The name alone is enough to evoke snapshots of a tropical paradise with tanned and toned bodies frolicking on the sand in teeny-weeny bikinis, mountains full of wildlife and a tantalising mix of African and colonial Portuguese heritage, all set to an infectious samba beat. Having bagged two of the world’s top sporting events – the football World Cup this June and the Olympics in 2016 – it’s the country everyone’s talking about.

Brazil was in the headlines last year because there were street demonstrations against the expense of hosting these international sporting events. But this year, Brazilians are gearing up to party big time. So it all makes for an unbeatable atmosphere if you are planning to visit. Here’s how to get your slice of the action...

The two beaches to flop on...

Ponta dos Ganchos:

The Brazilian expression for ‘just my cup of tea’ is ‘é minha praia’ – ‘that’s my beach’ – and it’s easy to see why. Some of the world’s most beautiful stretches of sand are found here. Definitely head to Brazil’s, most exclusive beachside escape, Ponta dos Ganchos near the city of Florianópolis, an hour and a half’s flight from Rio. Beyoncé liked it so much she wanted to come back. Set on its own peninsula, fringed by forests, you stay in chic designer bungalows, many complete with plunge pools and saunas. Food is excellent; there’s even a tiny island book for the ultimate romantic dinner for two.

Boipeba Island:

It’s not particularly easy to get to Boipeba, but it’s worth it! It’s a paradise island with no cars, palm-fringed beaches and a chilled –out vibe. Stay at the Pousada Santa Clara (, simple but tasteful cottages that are thoughtfully kitted out in a lush tropical garden next to the beach. Run by New York brothers Charles and Mark, this is the kind of place to watch the sun set with a passion fruit caipirinha and lose track of the outside world completely.

By Nicholas Kynaston, freelance journalist writing for Grazia magazine.

To read the full article, view on the Grazia website.

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