Explore the greatest rainforest on earth, soak up the atmosphere of lively Rio, marvel at the great Iguaçu Falls & discover Brazil’s unique colonial heritage
Day 1 & 2: Hotel Das Cataratas, Iguaçu Falls, Paraná, Brazil
Upon arrival into Iguaçu Falls Airport, you will be met and transferred to your accommodation for 2 nights, Hotel Das Cataratas.
On your first full day, you’ll be taken on a tour of the Brazilian side of the Falls, roughly a 45-minute walk through the forest to the various viewpoints. In the afternoon, you’ll be taken on a safari through the forest, spotting birds and other wild animals and learning about the flora and fauna of the forest. At the end of this 2-mile ride, you’ll be taken by speedboat to within a few metres of the thundering cascades coming over the falls.
Info: Hotel Das Cataratas & Iguaçu Falls
Iguaçu’s falls are one of the planet’s natural wonders and are surrounded by exceptional natural scenery. Formed on the Iguassu River, the falls are, on average, 60m tall and are 2700m in total. The number of falls varies from 275 to 150, depending on the river’s outflow. The major part of the falls is located in Argentina, but all its beauty can be admired on the Brazilian side as well. Trails through the subtropical forest of the Parque Nacional do Iguaçu (Parque Nacional de Iguazu in Spanish) to various viewpoints along the falls length allow you to enjoy the region’s wildlife, as you are likely to see at least some of the diverse birdlife, monkeys, small mammals and reptiles along the way.
The hotel provides luxury accommodation of the highest quality. The rooms are immaculately presented and tastefully decorated using a Portuguese style. There are two restaurants, an outdoor one alongside the pool and a lovely, open main restaurant that serves exquisite food with the mist from the falls visible out of the window, which are only a few minutes’ walk away.
Day 3-7: Pousada Vila D’Este, Búzios, Rio de Janeiro State, Brazil
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport, from where you will fly to Rio de Janeiro and be met and transferred by luxury minibus to Buzios (a 2-hour drive). Once you have checked into your accommodation, Pousada Vila D’este, you will have 3 days at leisure to relax by the beach and enjoy some of the activities on offer, such as snorkelling, diving and water-sports.
Info: Búzios & Pousada Vila D’Este
Búzios, a peninsula on the northern coastline of Rio, attracts many Brazilian and foreign visitors as a result of its natural beauty and laid-back sophistication. There are over 25 beaches, each very different, and most of them have charming inns and restaurants serving fresh fish and a wide range of Brazilian and international dishes. By night, Rua das Pedras, the main street, is full of people shopping, eating at one of the restaurants or drinking in one of the town’s bars.
Vila D’Este aims to provide guests an experience that will leave them completely relaxed and entirely satisfied with their stay. The rooms are light, open and luxurious, and some have a private balcony with a spectacular view over the bay. The large infinity pool is the perfect place to relax, as it is relatively secluded and quiet and overlooks the calming view of the bay below. The open-sided, candle-lit restaurant provides a romantic setting for dinner and serves excellent Brazilian and international food.
Day 7-11: Leme Othon Palace, Rio de Janiero, Brazil
After breakfast, you will be transferred to your accommodation in Rio de Janiero, Leme Othon Hotel, where you will stay for 3 nights. After lunch at the hotel, you will visit the world famous Sugar Loaf Mountain in the middle of Guanabara Bay, from where one of the most breath-taking views of the city of Rio can be enjoyed. The tour also offers a panoramic tour to downtown Rio. On the morning of your second day, you will enjoy a scenic drive to Corcovado, taking the train up the hill to the impressive statue of Christ the Redeemer, from where you will have an incredible view of the city. In the evening, you will be taken to one of Rio’s famous barbecue restaurants for dinner, with a samba dance show at Plataforma afterwards.
On your last full day in Rio, you will be taken by 4×4 on a tour of Tijuca Forest, the world’s largest urban forest, with the morning spent wandering leisurely along its paths and past its waterfalls, streams and verdant greenery. After lunch, you will return to the hotel and the rest of the day will be spent at leisure.
Info: Rio de Janeiro & Leme Othon Palace
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil’s capital from 1763 to 1961, is nestled between the mountains and the sea. Its magnificent shoreline includes charming bays and beautiful beaches, dotted with islands up and down the coast. Flying into Rio is a beautiful sight; whether it be at night or during the day, the visitor quickly finds out why Rio is known as the Wonderful City, with views of the famous favelas, the Cristo Redentor statue and of the stunning coast. It is also an important centre for art and fashion.
Leme Othon Palace is perfectly placed opposite the famous Copacabana Beach in the heart of the touristic Leme district, meaning that it is ideal for exploring the city and soak up Rio’s famous party atmosphere. The hotel offers tastefully decorated, large rooms with air conditioning, a TV and a minibar, with some enjoying a spectacular view of the Atlantic Ocean and the bay. Being on Avenida Atlantica, there is a huge choice of restaurants, shops and bars within walking distance of the hotel.
Day 11: Bahia Othon Palace, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil
Today you will fly to Salvador, where you will be met and transferred to your accommodation for 3 nights, Bahia Othon Palace. In the evening, you will be able to see Bahia by night, starting with a show at the Miguel de Santana Theatre, giving you a taste of the rich cultural history of Bahia, highlighted in the diversity of dances and musical performances on show. After the show, dinner will be enjoyed in one of the local restaurants.
Info: Salvador & Bahia Othon Palace
Salvador, Brazil’s capital until 1763, is divided in two parts. The “Lower City” is at sea level and contains the old port and the commercial area, where visitors will find a complete and varied assortment of Brazilian arts and crafts. It is also the best place to witness a demonstration of “capoeira”, a martial art developed by African slaves in Brazil, originally as a form of combat and later as a type of dance and folklore tradition. The “Upper City” can be reached by stone steps, alleyways or the famous Lacerda Elevator. This part of the city contains the old government buildings, the residential districts, museums, churches and much of the newer architecture.
Bahia Othon Palace is a lovely beach resort hotel with comfortable rooms overlooking the beautiful bay and decorated in a Salvadoran, Caribbean-esque style. The hotel has two restaurants overlooking the ocean, serving a wide range of international and Brazilian dishes, a large pool, a pool bar and the beach on its doorstep.
Day 12-18: Vila Gala Mares, Praia do Forte, Praia, Brazil
Before departing for Praia do Forte in the afternoon, you will be taken on a historical city tour of Salvador, winding your way through the old town, the Pelourinho area, with the largest and the best preserved complex of colonial architecture in the Americas. Over the next few days, unwind and relax or enjoy a plethora of different activities, including beach volleyball, tennis, water-sports and day-trips from the hotel.
Info: Vila Gala Mares & Praia do Forte
Just one hour north of Salvador, Praia do Forte is located in a preservation area with 12 km of semi-deserted beaches surrounded by lush coconut trees. Located near nature reserves of the Atlantic Rain Forest, this area features beaches where sea turtles lay their eggs, coral reefs, and humpback whale-watching areas. The area also holds the ruins of the only medieval-style building of the country, the Garcia D’Ávila Castle. In the small town centre, there are charming bars and restaurants, craft shops and jewellery stores in and around the streets and quaint alleys.
The 5-star Vila Gala Mares offers luxury, air-conditioned rooms as part of an all-inclusive package, allowing you to dine at a choice of 3 restaurants, offering the best of Brazilian cuisine. There are also a couple of bars, complete with live music, and the lively Molhado Pool Bar. In terms of activities, there is direct access to the beach, a gym, walking routes, water sports, tennis courts, beach volleyball, a games room, a Jacuzzi and the Satsanga Spa.