Five Places Better Than Rio in Brazil!

Brazil Beyond Rio

The eyes of the world will be on Rio this summer, when the city hosts the Olympic Games. But there’s far more to Brazil than Rio!

Rio de Janeiro is gearing up to host thousands of tourists heading to the iconic city for the Olympic Games this summer. But there’s far more to Brazil than Rio! Why not head away from the crowds and see what else this beautiful country has to offer? Here are our top five alternative destinations in Brazil.



Salvador is the city where Brazil meets Africa. Here, the descendents of African slaves have preserved their culture with their colourful religious ceremonies, aromatic food and infectious music. The city was formerly the colonial capital of Portugal’s great New World, and still boasts a wealth of colonial architecture to explore. The infrastructure of the city got a boost leading up to the World Cup of 2014, which puts it in prime position to host some of the Olympic events that are taking place outside Rio this year. The perfect spot to watch the Olympics away from the crowds of Rio!


This is one of the best-preserved historic cities in the country. It’s situated on the Atlantic Coast, in the state of Pernambuco. Olinda boasts a wealth of candy-coloured colonial houses and pretty churches scattered throughout its winding, cobbled streets. Visit one of the many art studios in town, and be sure to pick up some of Olinda’s famous handmade crafts to take home. Come carnival season, Olinda puts on one of the best parties in the country. Uniquely, its celebrations take place during the day which makes them a memorable riot of colour!


If you want to get beat the crowds and get back to nature, then take a trip to Manaus. The ‘gateway to the Amazon’, Manaus is situated in the North West of the country. Here you can find a wide range of tours and excursions that will take you deep into the heart of the rainforest, allowing you to experience this unique ecosystem for yourself. But there’s a lot to see in Manus town too. Visit it’s world-famous Opera House, or go to see the ‘meeting of the waters’ – a natural phenomenon in which the water of two rivers flow alongside each other without mixing.

Iguazu Falls

The Iguazu Falls are one of the natural wonders of the world. Straddling the border between Brazil and Argentina, you can see this jaw-dropping phenomenon from either country. On the Brazilian side, the gateway to the Falls is the town of Foz do Iguazu. Take one of many hiking routes that surround the Falls, admiring the scale of the spectacle as well as the plethora of colourful flora and fauna which abound in this area.

iguazu falls



Sao Paulo

Sao Paolo is the largest city in Brazil, and one of the biggest in the world. It’s renowned for its bustling, eclectic cultural scene and its many skyscrapers. Hit the galleries, starting with the famous Museu de Arte de Sao Paulo which is well worth a visit. Sao Paulo is also foodie paradise, offering almost every conceivable type of cuisine. The city is home to the largest Japanese population outside of Japan, so you can’t go wrong with its Japanese food! The city will also be hosting some Olympic events this summer.

Brazil is a huge country with so much to offer beyond the lively Rio streets and beaches, so get out and explore it all!

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