The Beautiful Sights of Brazil
We entered Brazil from Argentina. What a sight. A true tropical paradise, thatched roof houses, palm trees blowing in the breeze, beautiful people everywhere.
The next day we visited Iguacu Falls. What a spectacular sight. Situated on the border of Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil, the falls are impressive, to say the least. The roar and shaking ground gave a clue that they were close. The power of the water was so great that I couldnīt see anything but mist as the falls crashed down, giving no conception of where the falls end. A zodiac ride into the Devils Throat, a section of the falls, allowed for a closer look. They are actually tons of different falls, which we hiked to different vantage points to admire. From Foz we headed east to the coast of Brazil. Every day of driving here is postcard perfect. Its so mind numbing that taking pictures seems almost pointless. We drove up the coast, camping along the way, stopping for a couple of days in the colonial town of Paraty, a cute fishing village. We were treated to free drum demonstrations as the whole town got ready for Carnaval. Fabulous samba music made it impossible not to be tempted to dance. The rhythm seemed to pervade the entire country, and the heat and languor mixed with drumbeats and exhilaration were intoxicating.
Next, we headed up to Rio de Janeiro, the day before Carnaval began, for a crazy week of music, lavish costumes, lights, parties, and the incomparable Cocacabana beach. The city is extremely picturesque as cities go, necessitating the tourist sights, such as Corcovado mountain where stands the famous statue of Christ, overlooking the city, arms outstretched, admiring this slice of heaven. Sugar Loaf Mountain was reached by cable car, Copacabana and Ipanema beaches were a must see , and of course, the sights of Carnaval. The Sambadrome was an entire nights event, with the best samba schools in the country competing all night, with spectacular floats and costumes, in a performance of 80 minutes each. It didnt end until 7 am!
From Rio we kept heading up the coast to get to Salvador, the capital of the state of Bahia. It has kept the African roots of Brazil alive better than any city in the country. Along the way up to Salvador we stopped in Serra dos Orgaos National Park for a wet day of hiking and camping, sloshing through the rain of the Brazilian jungle.