Travel Consultant Kathryn tells us all about her recent trip to Brazil.
What country did you visit?
How did you get there?
We flew directly from London Heathrow to São Paulo with LATAM. Guarulhos Airport has great connections to lots of other cities in Brazil and we made use of this by flying straight into Iguazú.
Where did you go?
Iguazú Falls, the Pantanal, Salvador and the beach town Praia do Forte, and finally a week spent between Rio de Janeiro, Paraty and Ilha Grande. Brazil is such a vast and varied country and on a trip like this you can feel like you’ve had about four different holidays in one!
Have you been before?
This was my first time!
Which was your favourite…
Place: It’s a close call, but I’ll have to say Ilha Grande with Salvador coming a close second. At the end of a busy few weeks Ilha Grande is the perfect place to relax for a few days. It’s the quintessential laid-back tropical island, with more secluded beaches than you can count, let alone visit. If you fancy being a bit more active, the crystal-clear waters are perfect for snorkelling, or you can explore the many hiking trails that criss-cross the island.
Hotel: Belmond Das Cataratas. The hotel is uniquely located in Iguazú National Park and just a stone’s throw away from the falls themselves. It’s pretty amazing to be able to stand up from your breakfast table to stroll over to one of the viewing platforms and have the Iguazú Falls right there in front of you!
Excursion: Horse-riding from our lodge Pousada do Rio Mutum in the Pantanal. All of the activities we did here – including an early morning hike, several different boat trips and a night-time vehicle safari – were geared towards spotting as much wildlife as possible and our guide was brilliant. There’s something very special and exhilarating about seeing it all on horseback, and the horses at this lodge are really well-trained for first-timers and experts alike.
What was your most memorable moment?
Sitting at the rooftop bar of the Sol Ipanema in Rio de Janeiro on my final night, sipping a caipirinha and watching the sun go down over Ipanema beach and the Dois Irmaos – beautiful!
Is there anything indispensible to pack or prepare for?
Pack light! A streamlined wardrobe is essential if you’re covering all of these places - everything from beachwear to city clothes for sightseeing, and some good sturdy shoes and waterproofs for the Pantanal. And don’t forget the mosquito spray!
Sum up your trip in a sentence?
A whirlwind of a trip showcasing Brazil’s diversity and unique allure – stunning beaches, charismatic cities, jaw-dropping scenery and the friendliest locals!