After 2 weeks in Brazil, it’s now time for us to go back to Chile for a second experience volunteering. To be honest, we mainly stayed with our friends and family this time as we both know the country quite well already and we were trying to save money for the rest of the trip. However, we would like to share with you the amazing beauty of the country of Samba and Futebol (and Caïpirinhas :p). To give you ideas if you are planning a trip there, here is a list of the places we’ve enjoyed the most:
1 – Chapada Diamantina (state of Bahia)
Located 6 hours driving from Salvador, the “parque nacional da Chapada Diamantina” is a piece of heaven in the heart of latin America. If you enjoy trekking and beautiful landscapes, forests and waterfalls this place is for you and it would be a mistake not to go. We particularly recommend the trek of “cachoeira do buracão” (picture on the right) which is not too hard and will blow your mind.
2 – Jericoacoara (Ceara)
“Jeri” is such a special place. International meeting point of surfers and kiters, the spot is only accessible by crossing kilometers of dunes. The atmosphere of this little oasis totally worths the adventure to get there.
3 – Ilha Bela (São Paulo)
The island is easily accessible from São Paulo as you can reach it in 4 hours (car + boat shuttle) and remains 97% free of civilization. You may choose to do some Jeep excursion or simply trekking to discover some hidden beauties. We recommend you to know the feticera beach (see picture below) and Castelianos beach with its gigantic waterfall.
4 – Rio de Janeiro (Rio de Janeiro)
No need to present this one… The “Cidade Maravilhosa” will amaze you in so many ways!!
5 – Foz de Iguaçu (Parana)
Also very famous, the Iguaçu falls are so impressive. If you go there you should try to visit the hydroeletric plant of Itaipu, one of the biggest in the world.
6 – Ilha Grande (Rio de Janeiro)
Ilha Grande is a little harder to access than Ilha Bella as there are much fewer boats to get there and you need to leave your car on the coast, but it makes the place even more special. There you may enjoy so many savage and beautiful beaches, the boat being the easiest transportation on the Island.
7 – Natal (Rio Grande do Norte)
Natal is the capital of Rio Grande do Norte, in the North east coast. The city in itself is quite nice, but what is most enjoyable is the many dunes and beaches around, the most famous being praia da Pipa (cf. picture).
8 – Ouro Preto (Minas Gerais)
Probably one of the most interesting city of the country, culturally speaking, Ouro Preto and its numerous churches covered in gold will show you another aspect of Brazil.
9 – Trancoso (Bahia)
If you are looking for the most paradisiacal beach in Brazil, here it is! If you plan to go there, Porto Seguro would be a great place to stay.
10 – São Paulo (São Paulo)
With more than 20 million of inhabitants, São Paulo is so impressive. You might be stunned by the concrete jungle from the top of the Banespa Tower or the Edifiçio Italia (cf. picture). Otherwise Vila Madalena is the artistic neighborhood of the city and its bar with live Samba are really enjoyable.
11 – Buzios (Rio de Janeiro)
Buzios is a city located less than 200km east from Rio de Janeiro. There you’ll find so many beautiful beaches and a very charming and artistic city center.
12 – Fortaleza (Ceara)
The capital of Ceara is worth the visit mainly for what is arround it. First, as most of the places in the North coast of Brazil, the beaches around are simply amazing, but also, Fortaleza is internationally famous to host one of the biggest water theme park in the world.
13 – Paraty (Rio de Janeiro)
A very cute paved city center, some strong european cultural influence, a charming port, horse-drawn carriages, welcome to Paraty!! If you travel to São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, you can’t miss knowing the city. We recommend to do a boat excursion of 1 day to know the little islands arround (it’s quite cheap and so great).
14 – Salvador (Bahia)
The former capital of the country, now capital of the state of Bahia is full of historic legacy and is a cultural must in the country. Salvador is also famous for its traditional carnaval, one of the craziest of the country!! If you go there, you should also go to Morro de São Paulo (unfortunately we didn’t find the time to go when we were there…).
15 – Brazilia (Distrito Federal)
The current capital will amaze you in very different aspects than Salvador. As the city has been built from scratch, the atmosphere there is different from everything you know, but the architecture and organization are so interesting.
16 – Ubatuba (São Paulo)
Ubatuba is one of the biggest cities on the north coast of São Paulo. With its 70 beaches (some of them among the most beautiful of the country) and its crazy amount of waterfalls, you’ll spend your time there discovering new places and relaxing.
17 – Campos do Jordão (São Paulo)
Campos do Jordão is known as the “Brazilian Switzerland”. Due to a strong Swiss influence, the city is famous for its chocolate, fondue and wooden architecture. usually cold during winter, you can enjoy some ice-skating !!
18 – Blumenau (Santa Catarina)
If Campos do Jordão is the “Brazilian Switzerland”, Blumenau is clearly the “Brazilian Germany”!! The city has a clear german influence and even celebrates the annual Oktoberfest. And with a temperature of 30°C, you will want to avoid dehydration. Ein Prosit!
19 – Balneario Camboriu (Santa Catarina)
Balneario is a hotspot in the southern coast of the country. With its numerous bars and fancy nightclubs, the city offers great parties with international DJs. The beaches arround are also amazing!
20 – Chapada dos Veadeiros (Goias)
The parque nacional located few hours driving from Brazilia is a very nice spot for trekking and discovering some beauty of the nature. There we stayed in São Jorge, a tiny town known as a hippie meeting point.
And much more…
Those are the places we both know in Brasil, but there are much more places to be visited. You can be sure we will do our best toget to know soon the lençois maranhenses, maragoggi, Florianopolis, Fernando de Noronha, the Amazon forest, etc…
We hope you enjoyed this article and don’t hesitate to contact us if you want more information about those places. You may find more pictures of those places on our Instagram.
Upcoming, an article about our volunteering in Tal Tal, a tiny town located in the north of Chile.