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It goes without saying that Brazil is one of the most fascinating countries in the Americas. Yes, it’s a popular destination for medical tourism, and almost every has heard of Rio de Janeiro, though its landscapes and biodiversity are legendary in scope, and it has all the scenic and cultural variety you would expect from such a vast country.

It’s a truly captivating experience to travel here, and explore attractions which range from “frozen-in-time colonial towns to otherworldly landscapes of red-rock canyons, thundering waterfalls and coral-fringed tropical islands.”

And with ecosystems more diverse than anywhere else on earth, there are countless opportunities to spot iconic species, including toucans, jaguars, anacondas, scarlet macaws, pink river dolphins, and sea turtles.

Granted, obtaining a visa can be a little involved depending on your citizenship, but it’s well worth the effort in making sure your Brazil visa requirements are met for the chance to visit this beautiful country.

Four Reasons You Should Book a Flight to Brazil

The Amazon Rainforest

More than 60% of the iconic Amazon Rainforest is found in Brazil. Famed for its biodiversity, this is the world’s largest tropical rainforest, and among one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Hot and humid, being here brings out the explorer in you. It is here in Brazil where you will get a taste of what true Amazonian jungle is like. Witness incredible wildlife like caiman, anacondas, numerous species of monkeys, vibrant butterflies, macaws, and much more.

While there are a number of ways you can explore the Amazon, one of the most immersive is to live there. There are many local communities who welcome travelers, and will act as your tour guide, and you will enjoy a completely different style of living and the most delicious traditional food during your time.

If you’re not used such a traditional setting, there are many luxurious hotels in bases like Manaus, and river cruises which are dedicated to achieving a balance of luxury and adventure.


Jaguar in the Amazon

Brazilian Cities

Brazil is home to some truly legendary cities, with Rio De Janeiro drawing the biggest crowds. The physical beauty of Rio’s beaches and mountains is unsurpassed, and it’s cinematic cityscape is the ultimate picture perfect postcard.

But Brazil is surprisingly urbanized, and there are many cities worth visiting after you’ve spent a few days in Rio. Sao Paulo is South America’s largest center of trade and industry, and in stark contrast with the Amazon, a concrete jungle with a great deal of shopping, art and culture.

Pelourinho is a city within the city of Salvador, and is a fascinating stop for history buffs.  “Centered around the old slave auction, Pelourinho has pastel-hued colonial buildings, churches, museums, shops, restaurants, and fantastic nightlife.”

And Recife is where you should head for beautiful beaches, a passionate soccer scene, and high intensity carnivals. 

Rio De Janeiro RF

Rio De Janeiro RF

Medical Tourism

It may not be the most traditional type of tourism, but medical tourism is booming, and people from all around the world have become accustomed to traveling overseas for medical care in another country. Around 8 million patients each year.

Medical tourism in Brazil is all about the cheap plastic surgery. There are more professional cosmetic-surgeons here than in any other country in the world, and hospitals are capable of handling just about any kind of surgical procedure that you can possibly imagine. There’s even plastic surgery available for your pet!

English is widely spoken, and most of the major hospitals have translators to help break the language barrier for non-English speaking patients. The most famous clinic is Ivo Pitanguy Clinic in Rio de Janeiro, which has performed more cosmetic surgeries than any other place in the world.

The Beaches

Brazil is a country of powdery white-sand beaches, and it’s not uncommon for people to travel solely for the beach! While everyone knows Ipanema, there are plenty of sand-and-surf combinations you should hit outside of Rio, and plenty of secret beaches within Rio if you’re looking to escape the crowded scene.

One you should definitely make a stop at is Barra da Tijuca. This is Rio’s longest beach, stretching a gigantic 11 miles (18 km) from the edge of Barra da Tijuca to the opposite edge of Recreio.

The surf is high and the tides are strong, making it the perfect area for extreme water sports. Long and short board surfing, body boarding, kite surfing and windsurfing are quite popular with championships in these sports being held here on a annual basis.

Rio De Janeiro Beaches RF


Brazil Amazon Book

Lonely Planet Brazil

Brazil Amazon Book

DK Eyewitness Brazil

Brazil Amazon Book

Fodor’s Brazil


Megan is an Australian Journalist and award-winning travel writer who has been blogging since 2007. Her husband Mike is the American naturalist and wildlife photographer behind Waking Up Wild; an online magazine dedicated to opening your eyes to the wonders of the wild & natural world.

Having visited 50+ countries across all seven continents, Megan’s travels focus on cultural immersion, authentic discovery and incredible journeys. She has a strong passion for ecotourism, and aims to promote responsible travel experiences.



  1. I’ve been to the Amazon in Peru and it was such a fabulous trip – is there a difference between Peru and Brazil?

    • Hi Mandy, glad to hear you enjoyed your time in the Peruvian Amazon! We’ve done the section of the Amazon in Bolivia too and it was incredible :)

      In terms of the difference between Brazil and Peru, you’ll find Peru is a bit more accessible than Brazil – your main entry point here is Manaus, which takes a bit more involved transit to get to, but then because it’s more difficult to access, it’s also a bit more authentic than Peru. For instance, Brazil trips are usually more traditional, where-as Peru offers more luxury options for things like eco-cruises.

      You have black water systems in Brazil vs white water systems in Peru, but in terms of opportunity to spot wildlife, the experience is very similar, and you’re not missing out by choosing one over the other.

      Hope that helps!

  2. So gutted that I missed the chance of visiting Brazil when they had free visas during the Rio Olympics. Still want to go though.

    • I remember that too – we were actually in South America at the time and considering taking advantage of it, but decided we would save our trip for a time when there were less crowds :D

  3. I WANT TO GO TO RIO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • One of the world’s most iconic cities – I hope you have the chance to visit soon :)

  4. A jaunt of the Amazon with a side of plastic surgery … why not :D

    • Haha it’s not your most traditional form of tourism (medical tourism), but I was surprised at how big the industry was in Brazil, it’s truly booming at the moment!

  5. Hi Meg

    Cool to see that you’ve covered other parts of Brazil beyond Rio. Pernambuco has a cool set of islands and islets called Fernando de Noronha too that I think you would enjoy since you’re into the wildlife. There’s sea turtles, rays, reef sharks and dolphins and it’s stunning – probably the best undeveloped beaches in the country for your part about beaches too.

    Obviously there’s also Iguaçu which I was surprised didn’t make your article since it’s one of the widest waterfalls in the world. I spent many months in Brazil though and I know it’s hard to see it all.

    Love your photos.

    Delta Coan

    • Hi Delta, thanks for the tips on Fernando de Noronha, and yes, I agree that Igazu should definitely be on the itinerary of our next trip!

      It sounds like the wildlife around Fernando de Noronha is incredible, I’m quite excited to plan another trip now!

      So glad you enjoyed the post, yes, you could probably spend a lifetime exploring this one country, there’s so much in Brazil!

      Thanks for your comment and tips :)

  6. It’s on my bucket list.

    • Awesome Gearoid – hope you have the chance to travel soon :)

  7. Yes!! I freaking love Brazil, it holds a very near and dear place in my heart ♡

    • Definitely a country that will steal your heart!

  8. There’s such a thing as a pink dolphin??!! OMG

    • There is indeed! We swam with them in the Amazon, and had a blast throwing a ball back and forth, it was incredible … though they had a habit of biting our toes lol!

  9. Well summarized reasons – & you mentioned several places where I’ve lived (Salvador, Rio), where I have most of my family (São Paulo) & where I`ve visited (Recife). But I still have to experience the Amazon.

    • It’s an incredible country isn’t it! We’re wildlife and nature obsessed, so may be a little bias lol but the Amazon was a definite highlight! Hope you have the opportunity to visit at some stage :)

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