City Highlight: Rio de Janeiro; World Travel Guide

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea

Rio de Janeiro is fun and exciting. This Rio de Janeiro City Highlight includes must-see & off-beat attractions, food, nightlife, and other travel tips.

Vibrant, exciting and dazzling are words synonymous with Rio de Janeiro, one of the world’s favourite party cities.

With white sandy beaches hugging Guanabara Bay and part of the city designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, tourists flocking to Rio de Janeiro are in for a good time. Join the locals (Cariocas) and share their three obsessions: the beach, football and Carnival. And, if you want to get away from the crowds, leafy suburbs such as Santa Teresa offers bohemian cafés and art galleries, or take a cruise and visit one of the paradise islands that lie just offshore.

When to go

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Seven once-in-a-lifetime safaris outside of Africa; Laura Kiniry; USA Today

Brazil – Pantanal Conservation Area

Africa may have a lock on our collective imagination when it comes to safaris, but there are plenty of places outside of Africa where you can come face-to-face with wildlife in its natural habitat, too — think Canada’s “Kings of the Arctic,” Brazil’s big cats, the wolves of Romania, and so much more.

So, if Africa doesn’t figure into your travel plans this year, don’t despair. Here are seven trips that prove you don’t have to go all that way to have an authentic bucket-list safari.

Meet polar bears, ‘Kings of the Arctic,’ in Manitoba, Canada

What it doesn’t have in Big Five wildlife, Canada more than makes up for with its own impressive safari finds, including moose, grizzly bears and even reindeer. Still, it’s seeing polar bears in the wild that many people consider North America’s once-in-a-lifetime wildlife experience.

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10 Bucket List Trips Around the World You Probably Never Thought Of; Jenna Seyer; Ecophiles

Brazil – Pantanal Conservation Area

Looking for a travel destination that’s unique and underrated? These 10 lesser known natural wonders are perfect to add to your travel bucket list!

If you’re looking for a place where you’ll be inspired, where you’ll see some of the most beautiful sights in your lifetime, these 10 travel destinations around the world are perfect to add to your bucket lists. Not only are these natural wonders absolutely stunning, but this mix of known and  lesser-known trips will take you to unique spots of unspoiled beauty. Here are the world’s most gorgeous natural wonders you must visit:

Pink Lakes, Mexico

The pink lakes, or Las Coloradas, in Mexico are the hidden gems of the country, a magical wonder of color. These cotton-candy pink lakes, filled with salt, are home to protected wetlands rich in wildlife – flamingos, sea turtles, crocodiles, birds, and more.

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Mayor’s Proposed ‘Slavery and Freedom Museum’ Stokes Debate and Skepticism; Claire Jones & Lisa Hollenbach; RioOnWatch

Brazil – Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site

While Rio’s oldest favela, Providência, marks 120 years since its founding, the city has been undergoing a broader moment of historical reckoning, considering how best to utilize the past in order to construct identities and face the future. As the establishment of the Evictions Museum in Vila Autódromo and the struggle of the New Blacks Institute in the Port Zone show, collective engagements with history often occur through museums, as public spaces dedicated to the past. In particular, museums can serve as spaces for marginalized groups like favela residents and Afro-Brazilians to claim and share their stories, a crucial ability given those communities still face violence and societal obstacles today.

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Brazil – Pantanal Conservation Area

Jaguar, Panthera onca, El Jaguar (Spanish), Balam (Mayan), Onça (Brazilian Portuguese).

Living in the Yucatan jaguars seemed ever present whether visiting Maya ruins or the protected preserves of Pronatura Peninsula de Yucatan’s private El Zapotal Reserve, the private Kaxil Kiuic Biocultural Reserve and Calakmul Biosphere Reserve , and in architecture, literature, art and sculpture. To the Maya, the jaguar led the transition between the living world and underworld, a symbol of power, energy, fertility, a great hunter, and warrior. Friends even discussed their excitement of a jaguar crossing a road in Calakmul. I never saw one but was pleased protected areas exist.

However, did any of us ever “paw-nder” the daily life of a jaguar, this powerful, solitary, nocturnal creature of shadows and stealth?

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13 UNESCO World Heritage Sites Located in Brazil; Romullo Baratto; ArchDaily

Brazil – Historic Town of Ouro Preto

With more than five centuries of recorded history and many more years of pre-colonial traditions and customs, Brazil is listed in UNESCO’s World Heritage List with 13 historical sites.

The website Viagem Turismo compiled a list with images and detailed information about each of the 13 sites. The list ranges from the Serra da Capivara National Park, “full of rocky caves covered with rock paintings” made more than 25 thousand years ago, to the modern capital of Brazil, Brasília, founded in 1960.

The thirteen historical sites listed by UNESCO are:

  • Historic Center of Ouro Preto (MG)
  • Historic Center of Olinda (PE)
  • Ruins of São Miguel das Missões (RS)
  • Historic Center of Salvador (BA)
  • Sanctuary of Bom Jesus de Matosinhos in Congonhas (MG)
  • Brasília (DF)
  • Serra da Capivara National Park (PI)
  • Historic Center of São Luís (MA)
  • Historic Center of Diamantina (MG)
  • Historic Center of Goiás (GO)

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This Proposed Museum Would Celebrate Brazil’s African Heritage—Finally; Kiratiana Freelon; OkayAfrica

Brazil – Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site

These activists are fighting for the support of the Brazilian government to back a museum dedicated to Afro-Brazilian culture and history.

On a recent Saturday in Rio de Janeiro, the Filhos de Ghandi afoxé group congregated at the Cais do Valongo (Valongo Wharf) to celebrate the naming of the area as a UNESCO World Heritage center. Clad in blue and white robes, the group’s members danced to African drum rhythms. Many of the dances were dedicated to specific orixá gods. The public, many of whom learned about the event through a public Facebook event, watched or joined in on the celebration.

One hundred years ago, such public celebration so strongly connected to the Candomblé religion would have been prohibited.

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What Once Was the Main Slave Port in the Americas Is Now a World Heritage Site; Fernanda Canofre; The Wire

Brazil – Valongo Wharf Archaeological Site

Rio de Janeiro’s Valongo Port was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July.

The remains of what was once the largest slave trade port in the Americas came to the surface in 2011 after almost 200 years buried, when construction work on Rio de Janeiro’s port area began as part of the city’s preparations ahead of the Olympic Games it would host five years later.

In July 2017, UNESCO certified the place as a World Heritage Site, with the purpose of turning the long-lost stones of Cais do Valongo into a memorial site.

The recognition from the UN’s educational, scientific and cultural arm forces Brazil to recognise a period of its history that the country still struggles to fully confront. Brazil was the last country in the Americas to abolish slavery, doing so in 1888.

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Top tips to get the best out of the Iguazu Falls; Rose Palmer; Travelettes

Brazil – Iguaçu National Park

Wow. That was my first impression of the Iguazu falls and I assume probably of everyone else who has ever visited them.

Even with all the facts and figures to hand (it’s four times as tall and twice as wide as Niagara Falls, with 553 cubic feet of water pouring down 275 separate cascades per second), it’s hard to convey the immensity and impact of this UNESCO World Natural Heritage site.

It’s easy to see why mystical stories have cropped up to explain this natural phenomenon. According to legend, a serpent god planned to marry a beautiful woman from a local tribe, but she tried to escape with her human lover. In a wild rage, the serpent sliced the river in two, creating the waterfalls and separating the two lovers for eternity.

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10 exceptional wildlife experiences in Latin America; Simon Williams; A Luxury Travel Blog

Brazil – Brazilian Atlantic Islands: Fernando de Noronha and Atol das Rocas Reserves

It doesn’t matter what type of holiday or trip you are looking for; Latin America has something to offer everyone. There are idyllic beaches, fascinating historical sites, exciting adventurous activities, off-the-scale luxury hotels and award-winning restaurants to name but a few. However, if you are interested in wildlife, the options are endless. From sweeping mountainous valleys, to coral reefs and thick rainforests to some of the driest deserts in the world, this unique continent has an incredible array of habitats that support an even more astounding concentration of wildlife. Take a look at our recommendations for the best wildlife experiences;

1. Birdwatching in Colombia

With just under 2000 species of bird, there is no other country in the world which has as many bird species as Colombia.

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