World's greatest biodiversity and cultural melting pot
Photo © Tim Mossholder
Home to the AMAZON FOREST and many other important ecosystems, such as the ATLANTIC FOREST and the Pantanal, BRAZIL is a perfect destination for your green holidays. More than that, Brazil is also ethnically and culturally diverse, which is seen in its architecture, festivals, music, and food. Being the 5th largest country in the world, Brazil differs a lot from north to south, and east to west, so one visit will probably not be enough. Brazil is a place that captures you and makes you feel that there is still so much more to explore!
You should not miss
Diamantina’s carnival is a strong cultural reference for the people of Diamantina and popularly appropriated by the national tourism market. Carnival brought many important social, environmental, cultural and economic impacts to the municipality as a recreation of its characteristics from mass tourism to prioritizing family tourists and valuing the local community and culture.
A small Bombinhas municipality ensured the livelihood by agriculture and artisanal fishing of mullet for a long time. Several actions and public policies have been developed to safeguard the heritage of artisanal fishing and now it is in the identity of the people and the pride of belonging is present in the daily life of the community.
Started its constriction in 1997, The city Cidade Zigurats showcase sustainable city model and resilience to climate change. They have own economic system, produce their own food within the community and each unique buildings are designed based on research in architecture. Tourism in this city is based on what nature offers.
A story of small city that used tourism as a means to eliminating illegal activities and protect their restored environments. Capitólio is a small town where Quartzite was formerly extracted now known for the several tourist complexes with waterfalls and the boat rides on Furnas Lake.
The implementation of hydroelectric plant of Itá made residents completely relocate and demolite all existing historical buildings. The relocated historical buildings are now playing role as a cultural reference of Itá to tourists and promoting community integration and valuing the trajectory of their ancestors.
The Princess Isabel Outdoors Museum, located in the town of Orleans in Southern Brazil. It is the first open air museum in Latin America, presenting a traditional characteristics of small colonial industries while also encouraged cultural projects and actions involving the community.
Pedro Gomes, famous for its beautiful waterfall and trail, adapted a Mude 1 Hábito (change 1 habit) program to make environmental preservation part of their life. The program involved the entire population of Pedro Gomes with actions aimed at raising awareness and preserving the environment.
The city of Tibau located in the State of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil is famous for its 7 km of coastline that guarantees bathers safety and tranquility, Which is now under reinforcement by a joint effort at schools to strengthen the environmental awareness of the community and the actors involved in the tourism activity.
The Seringal Nova Esperanza Reserve, which straddles the cities of Epitaciolândia and Chapulí, is a sustainable use reserve created to protect the Brazil nut and rubber trees. Rubber is still an important activity today, not only because it supports many families, but also because it is a strategic activity for conservation and protection of forests.
Created by a group of 85 immigrants from Austria, Treze Tirias is now one of the main tourist cities in Brazil. It is the progress, development, and employment opportunities provided by the preservation of those cultures made it possible for the city to continue its orderly development without losing the city’s character of being clean, quiet, and safe.
Galinhos for tourists is a privileged places contemplated by the fauna and flora. Local schools host tourism and environmental awareness project which made it possible to provoke an awareness of the local community regarding the responsibility towards the cultural, natural, social and economic aspects of the destination.
Brazil has significant initiatives and programs for promoting green practices and is engaged in developing more sustainable tourism destinations.
The Ministry of Tourism and Braztoa (Brazilian Association of Tour Operators) are responsible for creating the Braztoa Sustainability Award, the country’s largest award on sustainable tourism and recognised by the UNWTO.
These organisations also developed the Map for Sustainable Tourism in Brazil. , in which the awarded initiatives are presented and promoted.
The map aims to give visibility to businesses and destinations committed to increasing sustainability in the country’s tourism industry.
Photo © Thiago Japyassu
Travel tips from our editors
Responsible Tourism Seal
In June 2020, the Ministry of Tourism launched the Responsible Tourism Seal – Clean and Safe for tourism businesses and destinations which are following the necessary safety and hygienic measures in the fight against Covid-19.
So far, over 23,000 tourism service providers have been granted the seal and thousands of others are in the process of getting it. This initiative was created to prepare the tourism sector for gradually resuming activities as well as to make tourists feel safer to travel again.
Try Local Food and Products
Brazilian cuisine is highly underrated! While Mexican food conquered the world (for good reasons!), most people are not familiar with Brazilian dishes and never had the chance to try.
So, if you are in Brazil, take this opportunity to explore the immense variety of local fruits, legumes and vegetables, many only found in South America! The cuisine changes drastically from region to region in Brazil, but some ingredients are loved and used daily by all Brazilians, such as rice, beans and mandioca (cassava).
Also, if you have a sweet tooth, our desserts will definitely not disappoint!
Enjoy the Rich Culture
Festivals, celebrations, crafts, music and dances in Brazil are diverse, authentic and just fascinating – and you are more than welcome to take part! We love sharing our culture, making new friends and having fun.
Supporting local artisans and artists, going to restaurants and bars with live music, visiting museums and galleries, taking walking tours, eating at local markets and participating in community-based tourism (such as in Araribá) are all very good ways to help us preserve our traditions and a key aspect of being a responsible traveler.
Depending on the location of the places you wish to visit, it is often more convenient to fly, after all Brazil is huge! All capital cities and major destinations are served with national (and sometimes international) airports. Renting a car or travelling by bus, nevertheless, are also very good options for a more slow-paced travel. Buses are affordable and comfortable, but renting your own vehicle is more suitable for reaching more secluded places and for having more freedom to enjoy the landscapes and cities. Travelling by train is not an option, as railways are used only for the transportation of goods. There are, however, a few exceptions of scenic train routes for tourists, such as the one in Rio Negrinho, one of our featured sustainable destinations.
Tourism & People
Tourism in Brazil is mostly domestic and regional (56% of international tourists are South Americans), but nevertheless of great importance for the country’s GDP.
Popular destinations – especially beach ones – may experience overtourism during summer holidays, New Year’s Eve and Carnival; however, given the size of the country, there are countless alternative destinations to choose from when trying to avoid these very touristic areas.
Brazilians are very open and friendly to foreign visitors, and if you know a few words in Portuguese, this will be very helpful, as English is not commonly spoken here.
Photo © Vinicius Pontes
Brazil has 9 destinations featured in the Top 100 Sustainable Destinations 2021.
"Brazil is a worldwide known hotspot for biodiversity as well as home to a multitude of cultural expressions. The natural and cultural heritage and immense variety of tourism experiences in the country are valuable assets for its competitiveness.
Yet, as we envision a post Covid-19 era, sustainability in tourism becomes crucial to build resilience and guarantee the long-lasting health of Brazil’s ecosystems and well-being of the hosting communities. This would also ensure an active contribution of the country’s tourism sector to the Sustainable Development Goals."