The largest country in South America, Brazil is so large that it occupies almost half the continent. The tropical paradise has everything to offer, from the Amazon rain-forest in the North to the vibrant metropolises of the South, from the jaw-dropping tropical beaches along the Atlantic to the beautiful colonial architecture, there are plenty of amazing places to see in Brazil. You’ll be surprised to know how diverse Brazil is as there is something amazing to do in every corner of the country. With strong Portuguese influence, the place has a vibe of its own. If the size of the massive map is worrying you on how to go about planning an itinerary to this exciting world travel destination, then you are at the right place. Read on to know more about this most appealing and exciting destination, BRAZIL!

Famous Places In Brazil To Add To Your Bucket List 

There is something so special about Brazil that it gives you a positive energy the moment you step your feet. No matter what your style or budget is, you’ll find it all here. Let’s take a look at some of the top rated attractions that you simply cannot miss.

Rio de Janeiro

places in brazil
Aerial panorama of Botafogo Bay and Sugar Loaf Mountain, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

Remarkable Rio de Janeiro is one of the best places to visit in Brazil. Located in southeastern Brazil, Rio de Janeiro is famous for its mountains, beautiful beaches and Carnivals. As a tribute to Rio’s natural beauty, it was nicknamed Cidade Maravilhosa (Marvelous City). The city is surrounded by lush forests and mountains circling the city. The world famous beaches, Copacabana and Ipanema act as the city’s backyard. One of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World ‘Christ the Redeemer Statue’ is right here in Rio city. The outstretched arms by the colossal Art Deco statue of Christ is sure to get under your skin and remain with you for a long time. 

With music being everywhere in the city, how can one ever miss the world’s largest Brazil carnival celebrations. Parades, costumes, dancing, live music, fireworks, street parties, abundance of bars and dance clubs makes the city buzz with life. Apart from the wonder of the world, the Tijuca National Park and world’s largest urban forest is what makes Rio so special.


places to visit
Pelourinho, Historic Center of the city of Salvador Bahia Brazil

Brazil’s third-largest city Salvador was its capital until 1763 and also the principal port for slaves arriving from Africa for three centuries. Hence you can see the culture here is a mix of Afro-Brazilian and this is evident in their food, religious ceremonies, rituals, and dance. Of all the tourist places in Brazil, Salvador will make you feel like you have stepped back in time. Its colonial architecture, historic center, cobblestone alleys, multi-colored buildings, churches and monasteries are its major tourist attractions. The 17th and 18th-century architecture and historic centers have earned it a place in the UNESCO World Heritage site list. 

The small beautiful cobbler streets are filled with drummers, Capoeira martial artists, and crazy festivities that bring out the phenomenal energy of this place. The annual Carnival celebration is a lively mix of both culture and style. Music, dancing, parades, costumes and street parties all form a part of the extravagant celebrations. As Salvador is situated on the coast of the Bay of All Saints, amazing beaches in Brazil like Porto de Barra, Flamengo and Stella Maris are ideal for sunbathing, swimming and surfing. You have to come here to experience the endless vibrancy of Salvador.

Amazon Rainforest

tourist places in brazil
Wonderful aerial shot of the Amazon rainforest

The world’s largest tropical rainforest can be experienced not just from Brazil but also from Colombia, Peru and other South American countries as it is extended to the other countries as well. Much of the northwestern part of Brazil is covered by the Amazon rainforest. For those who like to explore and take risks, nothing can beat the Amazon rainforest experience as it is one of the top tourist attractions in Brazil. With over three million species living in the rainforest, it is one of the most bio-diverse areas in the world. The big question is, can one visit the Amazon Rainforest? The answer is yes, in fact this is the first thing people think of on a Brazilian tour. 

There are many Amazon tours with local guides who will help you experience the Rainforest to its fullest potential without damaging the area or the wildlife. There are boat trips that will take you into the heart of the rainforests where you will encounter the wildlife and also explore the different ecosystems along its narrow waterways. On an outing to the Amazon, you’ll come across extraordinary creatures and indigenous tribes who still call this place home.

Suggested Reads: Wildfires Have Been Raging In The Amazon RainForest Because Of Human Intervention

Sao Paulo

famous places in brazil
Suspension bridge. Cable-stayed bridge in the world. Sao Paulo city, Brazil, South America.

Brazil’s largest city, Sao Paulo is located in the southeastern side of Brazil. From museums to galleries, theaters to restaurants, there’s plenty to experience in this bustling cosmopolitan city. Art lovers will find themselves being pulled in as there are multiple art museums throughout the city. To get a true feel for Brazil’s art scene one should definitely stop at the Museu de Arte de São Paulo, Pinacoteca do Estado and Museu Afro Brasil. Immigrants from Portugal, Spain, Germany, African, Jewish, Arab, and Japan has left an influence on the life and culture of Sao Paulo. There are many museums that are devoted to Japanese immigration and contributions of Africans in Brazil. 

Sao Paulo is divided into old and new districts, of which the newer side is more of a concrete jungle. The best way to see the city is from the observation deck of the 46-story Itália Building on Avenida Ipiranga. Whether it’s a great nightlife, theater, musical performance or international events there is always something happening. Sao Paulo is also famous for its skyscrapers, culinary delights and robust culture scene. It is a great place to explore while on your holiday in Brazil.


best places to visit in brazil
Brasilia, Federal District, Brazil – May 27, 2007: Brazil’s Bicameral National Congress is part of the city’s main monuments and was projected by the brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Since the 1960s, the National Congress has been located in Brasília. The semi-sphere on the left represents the Senate, and the semi-sphere on the right is the Chamber of the Deputies.

Brasilia which was established as the capital of Brazil in 1960 is a thoroughly planned and intricately organized city. It was Brazil’s former President Juscelino Kubitschek who ordered the city to be planned and developed into a utopian vision of organized urban design. Its landmark infrastructure is laid out in the form of an airplane where each section of the plane is a different district. Eixo Monumental forming the central body and the two wings representing the residential and commercial sectors. Brasilia’s new and creative architecture, the Three Powers Square: the Supreme Court, Congress, and the Presidential Palace attracts many tourists and professional architects alike. As Brasília was planned and constructed with extraordinary work by Lúcio Costa and Oscar Niemeyer, it doesn’t have the mix of commercial, residential, and government functions but they are strictly divided.

The other architectural highlights include the Palácio da Alvorada, the President’s official residence, the Brasilia Cathedral that resembles hands reaching up to heaven and is worth a visit. Besides these great architectural wonders, Brasilia also features an artificial lake and several beautiful parks that are prime tourist attractions.


brazil tourist attractions
Street of historical center in Paraty, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Paraty is a preserved Portuguese colonial and Brazilian Imperial municipality

Located on the lush Costa Verde, is the small coastal town of Paraty which is one of the most popular stops for tourists. Once a Portuguese colony, the historic town is known for its multicolored colonial buildings and cobbled streets which were built in the 17th century. If you’re looking to unwind and enjoy nature, then Paraty is the place to be as it is a gem of a destination. Paraty is bursting with striking forts, architectural hallmarks, waterfalls, emerald green sea, giant coastal mountains, tropical forests and beautiful cobblestone streets. The entire cobblestone streets are closed to car traffic making it great for strolling in the winding lanes. 

Fill out your day by exploring its many serene eco-friendly beaches and watching beautiful sunsets while enjoying the local cuisine. Don’t forget to check out the colonial forts, Capela de Santa Rita-a lovely 18th century church, charming placid plaza, and the phenomenal puppet theater. Spending two or three nights in Paraty will be dreamlike as there are amazing boutique hotels and romantic private cottages to make your stay cozy and comfortable. Undoubtedly one of the best Brazil tourist attractions to look out for.

Iguazu Falls

holiday in brazil
The Iguazu Falls on the Argentine side. Photographed from the Brazilian side.

Iguaza Falls is easily among the most beautiful places to visit in Brazil. Sitting right at the border of Brazil and Argentina, it’s the Brazilian side that provides more stunning panoramic views of the falls. The 275 separate cascades that plunge down amidst a scenic rainforest is the largest (9,000 feet in width) broken waterfall in the world. While 80% of the falls are located in Argentina, the best views are from the Brazilian side with Devil’s Throat canyon being the main highlight. Take a tour of this impressive natural phenomenon in one of the tourist rubber boats. For alternative views take a cab into Argentina. One can also enjoy the majestic falls by going on a walking tour along the catwalks. The combination of luscious green forest, dramatic water curtain and exotic wildlife is very impressive. 


tourist attractions in brazil
Blue Spring in the city of Bonito/MS

The small city of Bonito lies in the southwest corner of Mato Grosso do Sul. The area is surrounded by waterfalls, gushing rivers, huge sinkholes and lake-filled caves where you can indulge in activities like swimming, snorkeling and hiking. If you are looking for some outdoor adventure, then this is the place for you. Bonito is the sustainable ecotourism capital of Brazil where its fauna and flora can be explored within the Serra da Bodoquena National Park. Most popular of them all is snorkeling in the crystal clear waters of Rio da Prata, diving in Abismo Anhumas, a gigantic cavern covered in stalactite and exploring the Blue Lake Cave which is one of the largest flooded caves in the world. If you’re a bird lover, go bird watching in the macaws that are nested deep in the Buraco das Araras.

With so much to do here, Bonito could be the place to tick off most of the ‘to do things’ from your bucket list. 

Highly Recommended Things To Do In Brazil

Because of the immense size there are more than enough things to do that will keep one occupied for a lifetime. Let’s take a look at the highly recommended ones. 

Cruising Through The Amazon Rainforest

Cruising Through The Amazon Rainforest
Aerial View of Rainforest in Brazil

One of the most unique things to do in Brazil is to set out on a wild and energizing pontoon trip to explore the largest tropical rainforests in the world. Travel deep into the forest through the twisted Amazonian conduits for unmatched adventures.

Admire The Modern Design And Structure Of Brasilia

brazil best places
Brasilia, Brazil – May 17 2013: Church and Cathedral of Brasilia made it by Oscar Niemeyer

Concrete arms supporting a glass roof in Brasilia Cathedral are both modern in design and structure. The uniquely bold architecture is sure to make you stop and admire. For those who enjoy architectural marvel, this cathedral is a great stop.

Step Back In Time At Ouro Preto

brazil UNESCO site
Top view of the center of the historic Ouro Preto city in Minas Gerais, Brazil with its famous churches and old buildings with hills in background

Ouro Preto is a 17th-century colonial city which is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Ouro Preto, meaning “Black Gold” is the former site of the Brazilian Gold Rush which is a well-preserved colonial town in the country. There are 23 churches here that are still adorned with gold. The colorful homes, baroque churches, and traditional plazas have put this town at the top of the lists of things to do in Brazil.

Walk Through Cobbled Stone Streets

Brazil famous places
Narrow street of Old town with Night illumination. Czech Krumlov. Czech Republic. Shining lanterns at walls of medieval houses and road of paving stones.

The historic cobbled streets are lined with pastel-colored buildings, magnificent churches and rich colonial architecture. You will also find hip restaurants, and lively bars on either side. The music and dance performances on the square keeps the streets buzzing with activities. It is a delight to walk through these streets.

Ride The Lacerda Elevator In Salvador

beaches in brazil
Sunset with golden lights in the elevator Lacerda famous tourist spot of the city of Salvador Bahia Brazil

The Lacerda Elevator is a public urban elevator located in Salvador which connects the lower city to the upper city. Built by designer Augusto Frederico de Lacerda, this urban lift transports people from Cairu Square to Tome de Sousa Square. The view as you go up is breathtaking!

Explore Chapada Diamantina National Park

Chapada Diamantina National Park
Landscape of the Vale do Capao from the Morro do Pai Inacio, Chapada Diamantina, Bahia, Brazil

Brazil’s lesser-known gem is the Chapada Diamantina National Park which is in the east of the city of Salvador. From exotic mountains to giant caves, deserts to crystal blue lagoons, the park is an oasis of natural wonders. There are several tours that will take you through popular places like Morro Do Pai Inacio, Pratinha, Gruta Lapa Doce, Poco Azul, and Cachoeira da Fumaca for you to explore.

Cable Car Ride To Sugarloaf Mountain

Sugarloaf Mountain
Sugar Loaf bondinho – cable car travelling between stations over Urca.

While in Rio de Janeiro it is an absolute must to visit the Sugarloaf Mountain (Pão de Açúcar in Portuguese). This tall, steep mountain right next to Copacabana beach can be reached by taking a cable car. Start by taking a cable car from the base of the mountain to Urca Hill. And then another cable car from Urca Hill to SugarLoaf. The place is so unique that it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Experience The Carnivals And Festivals

carnival and festivals
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – February 9, 2016: Beautiful Brazilian woman of African descent wearing colourful costume and smiling during Carnaval 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Carnivals are huge celebrations held every year towards the end of February. During this time the entire country has crazy parties and parades which are completely free for all. These carnivals are held on the streets of the cities and attract people from all over the world. An approximate of two million people fill the streets with dance, colorful costumes, and lively music.

Whatever you want from your holiday, Brazil guarantees to deliver it. There is a wealth of experience to explore here. Our list here has a good mix of both natural and metropolitan wonders. Go-ahead and choose what fits you the best and do share your experience with us in our comment section below.

Where is the most beautiful city in Brazil?

Rio de Janeiro is the most beautiful city in Brazil.

Where can we see the best beaches in Brazil?

Trancoso in Bahia, Jericoacoara in Ceara, Itacare in Bahia and Praia da Pipa in Rio Grande do Norte are the best places to enjoy the beach.

What is Brazil famous for?

Brazil is famous for the great Amazon Rainforest, wonder of the world, carnivals and soccer. 

Is Brazil safe for LGBTQ travelers?

Yes, Brazil is safe for LGBTQ travelers as the tourism board has certified several cities as gay-friendly destinations. 

What is the currency of Brazil?

Brazilian Real is the present day currency of Brazil.

When is the best time to visit Brazil?

The best time to visit Brazil are the warmest months from November to March.


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