On your Rio de Janeiro Tour (South), see the highlights of one of the most spectacular cities in the world, a truly idyllic island paradise and an UNESCO world heritage site, in a week long Brazil trip . Starting in Rio de Janeiro take in the iconic Sugarloaf Mountain, Christ the Redeemer Statue, the world famous Ipanema/Copacabana beaches from the ground and then from the air on a thrilling Helicopter tour of the city. The city’s natural geography is something not to be missed with jungle covered peaks exploding right out of the metropolis and descending down to white, sandy beaches. After touring the city by day, dine at the best restaurants in the region, tasting the wonders of Brazilian cuisine and absorb the contagious Carioca (Rio dweller) culture by catching a performance during the evenings. Then wind down from the bustle of the city and head to the south of the state, to the tropical, car free island of Ilha Grande where you can enjoy the pristine Atlantic rainforest, kilometers upon kilometers of trails and the deserted beaches at your leisure. End your trip in the UNESCO World Heritage site of Paraty, walking the cobblestone streets, admiring the 16th century Portuguese architecture and taking a schooner cruise in the bay or a guided hiking trip to the region’s secluded waterfalls.
Situated between lush, Atlantic Rainforest-covered mountains and breathtaking beaches, the Cidade Maravilhosa (Marvelous City) has an allure like no other. Rio’s passion and zeal are instantly felt upon arrival as a result of the Carioca’s way of life, where every day seems like a celebration. While large-scale festivities such as Carnaval make Rio famous, there are countless occasions to enjoy all year long; Saturday at Ipanema Beach where some of the the bikini clad Brazilians bask in the tropical sun, a festa (party) in Lapa, football at Maracanã, or an impromptu roda de samba (samba circle) on the sidewalks of Leblon, Copacabana or Lagoa. The spectacular landscape is another of Rio’s virtues. Majestic peaks, golden beaches and deep blue sea offer a range of adventure. Christ the Redeemer Statue and Sugarloaf are just the beginning of Rio’s wonderful offerings, ride great surf breaks, trek through Tijuca’s rainforest or hike up Morro Dois Irmaos (Two Brothers Hill) for one of the most impressive views of the city
A true tropical paradise island filled with empty beaches, pristine/protected rain forest covered hills, kilometers and kilometers of hiking trails and a small, inviting town called Vila do Abraão which has b&bs, restaurants, bars and all the tourist infrastructure necessary to absorb the island’s beauty comfortably. Spend your days exploring the trails, snorkeling, surfing, basking in the sun on the white sand beaches and taking a boat tour to explore the entire perimeter of the island. No need to worry about traffic on this island since motor vehicles are prohibited, sit back and relax, you are in paradise! Check out a beautiful gallery of Ilha Grande photos.
Set amid jutting peninsulas and secluded beaches, with a backdrop of steep, jungle covered mountains plunging into an the island studded bay, Paraty is one of Brazil’s most appealing and exquisitely preserved historical gems. Paraty’s colonial center is designated as an UNESCO World Heritage site and is remarkable not only for its centuries-old architecture, but also for its lack of automobile traffic. The irregular cobblestone streets are closed to motor vehicles, making it a delightful place to stroll about. Elegant white buildings adorned with fanciful multihued borders and latticed windows blend harmoniously with the natural beauty that envelops the town. Dozens of pristine beaches are within 30 minutes of Paraty by boat or car, while inland, the Parque Nacional da Serra da Bocaina offers the lush Mata Atlântica (Atlantic rainforest) which holds numerous waterfalls. The town’s cosmopolitan flavor is further enhanced by the large number of artists, writers and chefs, both Brazilian and foreign, who have settled here and opened up shop.
Start your Rio de Janeiro Tour (South) at the Rio airport where our tour representative will be waiting for you to escort you to your accommodations by air conditioned coach . Embrace the lively carioca lifestyle by going for a stroll along the boardwalk, relaxing on the beach, going shopping, and people-watching. For dinner, enjoy a delicious Brazilian barbecue at one of the most highly touted churrascarias in the city, included in your tour.
After a fresh Brazilian breakfast at the hotel, your English speaking guide will pick you up by air conditioned coach for a full day tour of Rio de Janeiro. First head up to Sugar Loaf Mountain, a granite peak that towers over Guanabara Bay and is right in the midst of the city. Take the cable car ride to the top of Urca Mountain. The views of the city, the ocean, the islands in the bay, and the jungle covered peaks are truly amazing. Then ascend the most famous peak in Rio de Janeiro, Corcovado Mountain where the iconic “Christ the Redeemer” statue sits on top, gazing with outstretched arms over Rio. Enjoy panoramic views of the city’s incredible natural terrain as well as close-ups of the statue. Finish your trip in Tijuca National Forest, a protected national reserve that is situated right in the heart of the city. It a lush portion of Atlantic rain forest with a huge variety of wild animals. In terms of territory, the park represents 7% of the whole city and is considered to be the lungs of Rio. See the parks attractions like the Taunay`s waterfalls and with a bit of luck, monkeys as well as many species of birds can be spotted along the way. The evening is free to relax, stroll the promenade, go shopping, watch the Cariocas (Rio Dwellers) in their element and try one of several top notch restaurants nearby.
After yesterday’s ground tour, today see Rio in all its glory from the air by Helicopter. The 1 hour long flight will provide you unimpeded, spectacular views of: Jacarepaguá airport, Barra da Tijuca forest, São Conrado, Rocinha Slum, Vidigal Slum, Leblon, Ipanema, Arpoador, Copacabana Fort, Copacabana beach, Sugar Loaf, Niteroi city ( Mac Musem, Ferryboat Station and Icaraí beach), Rio – Niterói bridge, Santos Dumont airport, Downtown Rio, Sambadrome (where the largest carnival in the world takes place, Maracanã Stadium ( Brazil’s largest soccer stadium and home to the 2014 world cup final) Corcovado Mountain (the Statue of Christ), Alto da Boa Vista, Barra da Tijuca. Panamerican Games Village, 2016 Olimpic Games Village. After your Rio de Janeiro Tour by helicopter concludes, spend the afternoon at your leisure. Tonight, try one of our Rio nightlife tours. Just let us know that you are interested and we can provide you all of your options and arrange it in advance. Enjoy the best cuisine the city has to offer, a fascinating cultural event, a live Brazilian music/performance or dance samba late into the night at one of the city’s original samba houses in the Lapa neighborhood.
After another wonderful breakfast at your hotel, continue to the next leg of your Rio de Janeiro Tour (South), by transferring to the southern part of the state to Angra dos Reis by private air conditioned coach. Then take the ferry boat to Vila do Abraão on Ilha Grande. This tropical, mountainous island features federally protected Atlantic rain forest vegetation, 150 km of walking trails, waterfalls, tranquil villages, secluded beaches, and an absence of cars or roads. Check in to your beautiful bed and breakfast and enjoy the delightfully slow pace of this island paradise as well as a wonderful dinner included in our tour.
Have breakfast at the pousada and then enjoy a free day relaxing on the beaches, snorkeling, sailing, swimming, and hiking. There are an endless series of trails, including easy walks as well as more strenuous hikes. Lopes Mendes beach on the opposite side of the island from the main town, is consistently voted as on of Brazi’s best beaches and is a must see! If you prefer to spend the day scuba diving, doing a boat tour to see all the island’s beaches, or a guided walking tour we can arrange that for you as well. Just let us know.
After breakfast at the pousada, take the ferry back to Angra dos Reis. Our tour representative will be waiting for you to take you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Paraty by air conditioned coach. Set amongst jutting peninsulas and secluded beaches, with a backdrop of steep, jungle filled mountains plunging into an island studded bay, Paraty is one of Brazil’s most appealing and exquisitely preserved gems. In this tranquil and historic setting with cobblestone streets, relax and unwind in your pousada. In the evening you may want to walk along the waterfront, admiring the colonial-style houses, churches, and boats in the bay.
After breakfast, our bilingual guide will take you on a walking tour of Paraty. The town has a long interesting history which the guide will explain to you as you admire the architecture and the forested hills. A portion of the cobblestone streets are often flooded at high tide, since the port comes right up to the town which makes for great photo opportunities as the colonial buildings reflect off the water. In the afternoon, our bilingual tour representative will take you on a private boat tour of the bay, showing you the translucent waters and secluded islands/beaches. If you are more of a mountain/jungle lover, you may want to explore the surrounding Serra do Mar Mountains instead. There are several natural preserves, including Serra da Bocaina National Park, Serra do Mar State Park (of São Paulo), the Park Reserve of Joatinga and the Environmental Protection Area of Cairuçu. We can set you up an English speaking guide to show you these park’s majestic waterfalls and dense jungle. In the evening, return to Paraty and relax. There are often live music or dance presentations going on throughout the town, so make sure to get out and enjoy some Brazilian culture.
After your last Brazilian breakfast at the pousada, our tour representative will take you by air conditioned coach to either the Rio De Janeiro or Sao Paulo international airport for your flight home as Paraty is directly in between the two cities. Or, if you are not ready for your Rio de Janeiro Tour (South) to end, choose to extend this trip or combine it with any other of our 100% custom Brazil vacations.
The perfect, personalized Brazil vacation, tailor made to your unique preferences.