Top 20 places to travel in Brazil: the destinations you need to know!

Stroll through Brazil it's much more than visiting the best of each city on your itinerary. There are unusual places that are attraction of itineraries more specifics that, just because they are curious or picturesque, are worth considering. After all, places like Fernando de Noronha, Black gold and Florianopolis always have something different that can be discovered.

What is worth remembering in these cases is to try to find out as much as possible about the resources that each location has to offer. Even those not very publicized like Alter do Chão, in Pará, or even the Discovery Coast, have details that are interesting to know in advance.

Read too " Os 100 lugares mais lindos para viajar no Brasil

The curious thing is to know that each of the attractions below has attractions for different profiles of travelers and that are highlights for all types of people, from those who like a calm ride to those who only enjoy a trip with a group.

The country retains so many intriguing and surreal things that would leave any gringo open-mouthed. When planning your next trip, don't forget to research the city in your own "backyard" rather than thinking that your neighbor's grass is always greener.

Places to travel in Brazil

Discovery Coast

places to travel in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: J. Balla Photography / Unsplash

The Coast or, for some, the Discovery Route, is a tourist area located in the south of the State of Bahia and comprising the municipalities of Belmonte, Santo André, Santa Cruz Cabrália, Porto Seguro, Arraial d'Ajuda, Trancoso and Caraíva. It is located between Costa das Baleias and Costa do Cacau.

It has a wide variety of landscapes punctuated by beaches for water sports, rivers with very clear water and preserved mangroves. Explore the coast, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the cradle of Brazilian history and culture. A region surrounded by several natural attractions such as beaches, bays, coral reefs, mangroves and navigable rivers, the region is ideal for adventure tourism and ecotourism. Explore the coast, considered the cradle of Brazilian history and culture, declared a Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO. Several paradisiacal beaches fascinate local tourists.

Fernando de Noronha

places in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Ze Paulo Gasparotto / Unsplash

Designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001 due to its importance as a feeding place for tuna, sharks, turtles and marine mammals, Fernando de Noronha is an archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean, part of the State of Pernambuco. Made up of 21 islands and islets, only the main island of the same name is inhabited, with an estimated population of 3,101 in 2020.

The islands are administratively unique in Brazil. They form a “state district” that is directly administered by the Pernambuco state government, despite being closer to the state of Rio Grande do Norte. Most of the original large trees were cut down in the 19th century when the island was used as a prison, for firewood and to prevent prisoners from hiding and making rafts. In addition, exotic species were introduced, such as tegu lizards, introduced in the 1950s to control a rat infestation; the rock guinea pig, introduced by the military in the 1960s as a fighter for soldiers; and domestic cats, introduced as pets, now spread across the island and several have acquired feral status, surviving only by preying on native birds, cavies and rodents.

Serra Gaúcha

places to travel in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Filipe Sizilio / Unsplash

Cultural region that comprises the mountain range in the northeast portion of the state of Rio Grande do Sul. Most of its inhabitants are of German and Italian descent. Consequently, the cities of Serra Gaúcha reflect German and Italian influences through their architecture, gastronomy and culture. Geographically, it is part of Serra Geral.

Several tourist itineraries run through the most picturesque cities of Serra Gaúcha, mainly the Romantic Route, following the tracks of German colonization; the Caminhos da Colony with an Italian flavor; the Rota da Uva e o Vinho wine tasting; and the Region of Hydrangeas, landscaped with beautiful hydrangeas. The most important cities among the 75 municipalities of Serra Gaúcha are Caxias do Sul, Bento Gonçalves, Garibaldi, Farroupilha, Gramado, Canela, Veranópolis, Nova Prata, Vacaria, Nova Petrópolis and Carlos Barbosa.

Alter do Chão

places to travel in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: lubasi / Flickr

One of the administrative districts of the city of Santarém, in the state of Pará, located on the right bank of the Tapajós. It is the main tourist spot in Santarém, as it is home to the most beautiful freshwater beach in the world according to the British newspaper The Guardian, and is popularly known as the Brazilian Caribbean.

tourism in Alter do Chão it is most suitable from August to December. When the waters go down, you can visit the freshwater beaches. Among the most famous festivals is the Sairé, the most popular in the Amazon rainforest and mixes Catholic religious elements with expressions of local culture for residents and tourists. It takes place every September, with processions, groups of Caibó and dramatizations of Amazonian legends, such as the legend of the boto. There is also a fun contest between the Cor de Rosa and Tucuxi dolphins, groups with allegories, songs and costumes. The Botos Festival was incorporated into Sairé in the 1970s and resembles the Festival dos Bois de Parintins (from Amazonas.

Route of Emotions

places to visit in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Ricardo Avelar / Flickr

Route in the Northeast that passes through 14 municipalities and three states, namely: Ceará (Jijoca de Jericoacoara, Barroquinha, Camocim, Chaval and Cruz), Piauí (Parnaíba, Ilha Grande, Luís Correia and Cajueiro da Praia – Barra Grande; and Maranhão ( Barreirinhas, Paulino Neves, Araióses, Tutóia, Santo Amaro do Maranhão). Route of Emotions, remaining between eight and 15 days.

The attraction also presents a diversity of attractions that will please all tastes, ranging from ecotourism activities, sun and beach, and adventure, to gastronomic tourism. For those who prefer peace, it has a beach and plenty of beauty for contemplation, and for lovers of excitement, sports (with the practice of hiking and trekking, especially in Lençóis Maranhenses) and adventures along the entire route.

Black gold

Places to travel in Brazil

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Warley Dias / Unsplash

A city that was once the former capital of the state of Minas Gerais, located in Serra do Espinhaço and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO because of its remarkable Portuguese Baroque colonial architecture. It sits right in one of the main areas of the Gold Rush in Brazil. It was the capital of Minas Gerais from 1720 to 1897.

As tourist attractions, in addition to churches and museums, it also has several old gold mines in the city that offer tours to tourists. One of the best known is the Chico Rei Mine, close to the sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Conceição. In the early 19th century, Portugal gave the United Kingdom the exclusive use of this mine for 100 years to pay off Portugal's sovereign debts. This is the largest mine in the world open to the public. The municipality also contains about 10% of the 31,270 hectares of the Serra do Gandarela National Park, created in 2014.

jalapão

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Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Rodrigo José Fernandes / Wikimedia Commons

Semi-arid microregion of the state of Tocantins. Parts feature dramatic landscapes with large orange sand dunes, towering rock formations, and clear, fast-flowing rivers and streams. This attracts tourists. It is a destination for adventure tourism and ecotourism, with Mateiros, Novo Compro, Ponte Alta and São Félix as its main attractions. The fine orange sand dunes reach 40 meters in height. Cachoeira da Velha, a horseshoe-shaped waterfall 100 meters wide and 15 meters high. The villages of Mumbuca and Prata, formerly quilombola, allow tourists to experience the local culture.

The 18th season of the Survivor series, Survivor: Tocantins, was filmed there. Residents and local media complained about the closure of areas and environmental damage. The producers said the closures were temporary in the areas where filming was taking place and they were committed to restoring any damage.

Beautiful

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Ademir Alves / Unsplash

This municipality in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul has an area of 4,934 km2. There are more than 30 tours available in the region, most of which are based on exploring the ecology and natural environment of the area. Almost all tours need to be booked through an official city tour agency and require an accredited guide, although this will be arranged at the time of booking.

Some of these more popular tours include: Abismo Anhumas, rappelling 72 meters down into a cave and 80 meters deep, crystal clear underground lake; Snorkel in Rio da Prata, with crystal clear waters, abundant fish, walk through the forest and a delicious lunch; Natural Aquarium, including a 25-minute walk through the jungle, followed by a 900-meter dive, where you float with fish and enjoy the underwater vegetation; and Circuito Arvorismo, an adventure trail that allows you to walk through the treetops on a suspended steel walkway installed in native trees such as mastic and mahogany.

Rio de Janeiro

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Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Raphael Nogueira / Unsplash

Rio is the second most populous city in Brazil and the sixth most populous in the Americas, in addition to being the capital of the state of the same name, the third most populous state in Brazil, after São Paulo and Minas Gerais. Part of the city was declared a World Heritage Site, with the name “Rio de Janeiro: Cariocas Landscapes between the Mountains and the Sea”, on July 1, 2012 as Cultural Landscape. There is so much to see in Rio that we would need a lot more space just to list the options.

Rio de Janeiro is the main tourist attraction and resort in Brazil. It receives the most visitors per year of any city in South America, with 2.82 million international tourists per year. It is an international hub of highly active and diverse nightlife, with bars, clubs and nightclubs that stay open well after midnight. The city is a major global LGBT destination, with 1 million LGBT tourists visiting each year. Rua Farme de Amoedo is located in Ipanema, a famous neighborhood in the South Zone of Rio de Janeiro. The street and neighboring beach, famous tourist spots, are notable for their popularity with the LGBT community. Rio de Janeiro is the most awarded destination by the World Travel Awards in the South American category of “best destination”.

Chapada Diamantina

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Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Matheus Seiji Goto / Unsplash

This is a region of the state of Bahia, in the northeast. The mountain range is known as “Serra do Espinhaço”, in Minas Gerais. Due to the extension of its territory and the great distances between the main natural attractions and tourist cities, special attention is recommended when planning trips. The tourist infrastructure of the place is located in the municipalities of Lençóis, Mucugê, Andaraí, Ibicoara, Palmeiras, Rio de Contas and in the villages of Igatu and Vale do Capão. Choose one of these points to stay, and from there get organized to know the attractions.

The most popular attraction are the huge canyons with rivers of brownish water and several waterfalls. The altitude fields are known locally as Gerais. The trails were once used by miners in their search for diamonds. In Lençóis, one of the most important cities in the region, you can find some ecotourism agencies and independent guides. Among the main attractions are Morro do Pai Inácio, Cachoeira da Fumaça, Cachoeira do Mixila, Cachoeira do Sossego and Vale do Pati, which is considered the best trekking destination in the country.

maragogi

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Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Alex Braga / Unsplash

This Brazilian municipality of alagoas is on the northern coast of that state, which makes it the easternmost city in the state. As the main destination in Alagoas after its capital, it attracts visitors from Maceió. From Japaratinga beach, at the southern tip, a ferry crosses the Manguaba River to Porto das Pedras, where visitors find practically deserted beaches. Maragogi was initially a small village called Gamela. In 1887, Isabel was granted adopted status to honor the Brazilian princess who signed a law ending slavery in Brazil. Later, in 1892, it was named Maragogi in honor of the river that bathes the city.

Its main attraction is the “Galés”, a set of tropical pools formed at low tide about six kilometers from the city's beach. They are served by 15 large registered catamarans that depart from various parts of the municipality. Individual tours are also available. In 2015, the city started to host sporting events, with the launch of the first Trail Running competition in the region: the WINGSMAN Maragogi and later became the destination of adventure and outdoor tourism with the traditional tourist in search of the best beaches. from the country. The deserted beaches and other rural attractions can be accessed by renting beach buggies available at hotels and inns.

saw trimmings

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Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Germano Roberto Schüür / Wikimedia Commons

Indicated mainly for lovers of ecology, the Aparados da Serra National Park is located in the Serra Geral of the states of Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina, in the south. It is one of the first national parks in Brazil, created to protect the Itaimbezinho canyon, in an area of 10,250 hectares.

When created in 1959, the national park protected a larger area, reduced in 1972 through a presidential decree. In 1992, adjacent to the national park, the new Serra Geral National Park was created, covering over 17,300 hectares. One of the main obstacles to conservation efforts is that the state owns only 67.5% of the land, and even part of it is occupied by farmers. Cattle raising, the practice of using fire to “renovate” the fields, the establishment of banana plantations with associated use of pesticides and the presence of domestic animals all contribute to environmental degradation. Other threats are posed by invasive flora in the areas around the park and poaching.

Florianopolis

places to know

Places to travel in Brazil. Photo: Eduardo Zmievski / Unsplash

The capital and second largest city in the state of Santa Catarina, it encompasses Santa Catarina Island and small neighboring islands, as well as part of the mainland. It is known for having the third highest score on the country's Human Development Index among all Brazilian cities (0.847). It is one of the most visited places in Brazil for being an island with 42 beaches, lagoons and waterfalls. Outdoor sports including diving, hang gliding, rowing, paragliding and mountain biking, as well as surfing, are common on the island.

Santo Amaro da Imperatriz was the first thermal plant in Brazil. Hotels with thermal facilities are located in the neighborhood of Caldas da Imperatriz and in the city of Águas Mornas. The thermal springs of Fonte Caldas da Imperatriz are an additional source of thermal water, which can reach a temperature of 39 °C, where there are immersion baths and hydromassage.

Foz do Iguaçu

places to visit in Brazil

Photo: Guilherme Madaleno / Unsplash

The Brazilian city on the border of waterfalls of Iguaçu is the 7th largest in the state of Paraná. The Falls, located on the border of Argentina and Brazil, are made up of approximately 257 individual waterfalls over 2.7 km. They were chosen as one of the “New Seven Natural Wonders of the World”.

The city is characterized by tourism and cultural diversity. There are about 80 nationalities, the most representative of which are Italy, Portugal, Lebanon, China, Paraguay and Argentina. Foz do Iguaçu is part of a trinational region, bordering the Argentine city of Puerto Iguazú and the Paraguayan city of Ciudad del Este. The city's economy is based on tourism, with an emphasis on trade and services.

Praia da Pipa

places to know

Photo: Bjørn Christian Tørrissen / Wikimedia Commons

One of the most famous beaches in the country, located near the city of Natal, capital of the state of Rio Grande do Norte. The story behind the current name tells that when the Portuguese were sailing close to the beach, they spotted a large barrel-shaped rock and that's how the new name was adopted. It was a small fishing village until the 1970s. Then it was discovered by surfers and backpackers, attracted by a set of natural attributes rarely found even on other Brazilian beaches: crystal clear waters, fine white sand, Atlantic Forest preservation areas, 10 meter high vertical cliffs and locations. However, one must be very careful with the strong currents of the sea and the huge waves loved by surfers, but really dangerous for those who want to enjoy these warm waters.

Today, many businesses in Pipa are run by foreigners who have visited the city and decided to stay. Pipa, still small in area (expansion limited by law, with the creation of Environmental Protection Areas around the village), has a high density of hotels, restaurants, bars and other businesses aimed at tourism.

Veadeiros Plateau

places to know

Photo: J. Balla Photography / Unsplash

THE Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park is located in the state of Goiás, on top of an ancient plateau with an estimated age of 1.8 billion years. It was created on January 11, 1961 by President Juscelino Kubitschek and classified as a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 2001. It occupies an area of 2,405 km2 in the municipalities of Alto Paraíso de Goiás, Cavalcante and Colinas do Sul. The park is maintained by the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation.

Its rock formations are one of the oldest on the planet. There is quartz with crystal outcrops. These rocks are exported and appreciated in Japan and England, where for some decades they were used for industrial work. Nowadays, therapists and nature lovers seek energies and healing power in crystals and in places like Alto Paraíso. Rock crystals are present in the soil of the rich cerrado, or open grassland. Forest growth is also found in the region, where more than 25 species of orchids can be found, in addition to other Brazilian species such as pau d'arco roxa, copaíba, aroeira, clog tree), teriva (a variety of ), buritis (palm) and babassu.

manaus

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Photo: Maxwell de Souza Freitas / Unsplash

Capital and largest city in the Brazilian state of amazon. Located in the east-central part of the state, the city is the center of the metropolitan region of Manaus and the largest metropolitan region in the North of Brazil in terms of urban mass. It is located near the confluence of the Negro and Solimões rivers, two rivers that meet east of Manaus and unite to form the Amazon River. It was one of the twelve Brazilian host cities of the 2014 World Cup, as well as one of the five subsections of the 2016 Summer Olympics.

In the region is the Anavilhanas National Park, a national park that encompasses a huge river archipelago in the Rio Negro. It was originally created on February 6, 1981 as an integral protection unit covering 350,018 hectares and reclassified as a strictly protected ecological station to the status of the most open (but still protected) national park by law No. 11,799 of October 29, 2008. Also there is another natural attraction, the Jau National Park, one of the largest forest reserves in South America. Both are part of the World Heritage Site.

paraty

places to know

Photo: Gilberto Olimpio / Unsplash

Also spelled as paraty, is a preserved Portuguese colonial (1500–1822) and Brazilian imperial (1822–1889) municipality located on the Costa Verde, a verdant corridor that runs along the coast of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It has become a tourist destination, known for the historic center of the city and the coast and mountains of the region. The historic center of the city, as well as four areas of Atlantic Forest, were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2019 under the title “Paraty and Ilha Grande”.

There are many musical and cultural events, the most prominent being FLIP – International Literary Festival of Paraty. The city is also known for its local festivals on Catholic holy dates, such as the Feast of the Holy Spirit. Annually, the Bourbon Jazz Festival in Paraty takes place every May since 2009. The traditional music event has already brought together many of the great names of jazz, blues, soul and R&B from Brazil and the world. Casa da Cultura Paraty occupies a historic mansion originally built in 1754, opened to the public in 2004. It houses a permanent exhibition on local history and culture.

Sao Paulo

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Photo: Joao Tzanno / Unsplash

Listed by the GaWC as an alpha global city, the municipality of São Paulo is the most populous city in Brazil, the Americas, the Western Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere, as well as the 4th largest city in the world by population. In addition, São Paulo is the largest Portuguese-speaking city in the world. It serves as the capital of the state of São Paulo, the most populous and wealthiest state in Brazil. It exerts strong international influences in commerce, finance, arts and entertainment. Its name honors the Apostle, Saint Paul of Tarsus. The city's metropolitan region, Greater São Paulo, is the most populous in Brazil and the 12th most populous on the planet.

Large hotel chains that target the corporate traveler are in the city. São Paulo hosts 75% of the main trade fairs in the country. The city also promotes one of the most important fashion weeks in the world, São Paulo Fashion Week, created in 1996 under the name Morumbi Fashion Brasil, is the largest and most important fashion event in Latin America. Cultural tourism is also relevant to the city, especially when considering international events in the metropolis, such as the São Paulo Art Biennial, which attracted almost 1 million people in 2004. It has a nightlife that is considered one of the best in the world. country, and is an international hub of highly active and diverse nightlife with bars, clubs and nightclubs that stay open until midnight. Rua Oscar Freire was named one of the eight most luxurious streets in the world, according to Mystery Shopping International.

Port of Chickens

places in brazil

Photo: Cleber Nadalutti / Unsplash

Beach in the municipality of Ipojuca, in the state of Pernambuco. It is an important tourist destination famous for its beaches with clear waters and natural pools, located 60 kilometers south of the state capital, Recife. The municipality of Ipojuca, where it is located, was founded on November 12, 1895.

It was elected the “Best Brazilian Beach” for the eighth consecutive time by the readers of the Brazilian magazine Voyage & Tourism. According to the magazine, the main reasons given are the beauty of the natural pools (the closest to the coast of Brazil), the ecological trails, the hotel infrastructure and the proximity to a large city and the airport of Recife.






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