Salvador – Praia do Forte – Foz do Iguaçu – Rio de Janeiro
Day 1 – Salvador:
Arrival at Salvador followed by transfer to Hotel
All the formalities have been completed in advance. During the check-in, welcome drink is served. Check-in takes place in a separate area.
Destination description Salvador
Situated in Brazil’s Tropical Northeast, the state of Bahia is a land where the volume of its history and civilization tinges reality with a magical air. A land where the influence of its earliest inhabitants, the Portuguese, the Negro and the Indian, left a rich inheritance. The splendor of the colonial architecture – churches, palaces, mansions and fortresses, the deep religious faith of its people and the deliciously spicey flavored cuisine. Salvador, the capital of the state, was founded in 1549 and constructed by soldiers, colonists, Jesuits, Portuguese, and Indians. The city was also the first capital of Brazil until 1763 and has today a population of about 2 million inhabitants. The city is divided into two levels. The lower city lies by the seaside. A market next to its ancient port, the “Mercado Modelo”, offers a large variety of exotic Brazilian artifacts. There are several ways to reach the upper city, but the most enjoyable access is by means of the famous Lacerda elevator, one of Salvador’s symbols. Upon arrival, there is much to see, old governmental buildings, museums and many churches. It is said that Salvador has 365 churches, but there are actually 166 and the most famous is the Sao Francisco Church, also called the “golden church”, located in the historical district and which was decreed a Patrimony of Humanity by Unesco. Walking through the “Pelourinho”, the now fully restored square named after the pillory that used to stand on it teaches you Brazilian history at every step. The carnival in Salvador is a major attraction for tourists. Thousands of people from every corner of Brazil join the city’s population in a fancy dress revelry that lasts for four days without interruption. Everyone dances in the streets to the sound of Electric Trios that play until dawn. The beaches in the state are beautiful, and just in Salvador alone, there are 50 kilometers of beaches to be explored. The same peaceful sea, lined with a wide belt of white sand and green coconut groves, can be discovered on the North Coast, by following the “Coconut Road”. Within the Todos os Santos Bay, are many islands of bucolic beauty and a trip to the islands can be made by schooner. Along with the state’s South Coast, which also boasts tranquil waters and a tropical climate, there are beaches as beautiful as those in the capital. Bahia offers other interesting attractions besides its beaches. The Chapada Diamantina is a good option for those interested in natural wonders. This highlands region is located in the state’s geographic center and was its richest region in the last century at the peak of the gold and diamond mining era. The region’s savanna landscape, broken by the highlands, as well as numerous caves and waterfalls are sure to delight any visitor. Another interesting point to visit is the Reconcavo region, with cities like Cachoeira, Santo Amaro, and Maragogipe, whose principal attractions are colonial architecture, handicraft, folklore and distinctive cuisine. In 1970, the city of Cachoeira was granted National Monument status.
Welcome dinner at local “boteco” in the Rio Vermelho neighborhood
It is to Rio Vermelho that Bahians head for on their night out. Referred to affectionately as the bohemian quarter, as it embraces the city’s of “bon vivant” with open arms, and in many cases, open doors, until the small hours. Rio Vermelho recently underwent a major urban refurbishment program bringing a renewed buzz to this traditional and much-loved neighborhood, attracting peoples from all walks of life. The neighborhood is home to a myriad of bars, restaurants and botecos, (think ‘bodega’), an institution that’s key to the district’s charm. The boteco tradition is synonymous with a bohemian lifestyle, offering an informal ambiance where friends meet and drink a daftly cold beer or their favorite cachaça, always accompanied by the all-important petiscos or snacks, always complemented by lively banter and conversation. The neighborhood is also home to three of the city’s most famous and treasured baianas de acarajé selling the best of Bahian street food. Music completes the attractions with a number of bars providing the best in local live music in its many forms, from traditional to contemporary.
Option: Caipirinha-making demonstration by the expert barman. Musical trio performing classics of Bahian/Brazillian music (from bossa nova to Bahian carnival hits)
Dinner at Casa de Tereza (awarded typical bahian cuisine chef)
Day 2 – Salvador: Full Day Salvador Tour
AM Salvador Pelourinho Tour
PM At the Beach with beach soccer championship featuring local sport NGO
Lunch at the best beach hut in town
Drive to the north of Salvador towards the beach area for a seafood lunch at the city’s best beach hut. After lunchtime for leisure. Group is then introduced to the leaders and kids of Canabrava Project, an NGO that assists kids and teens offering sports activities such as soccer, avoid them being on the streets. The leaders will introduce the project, their goals and struggles. After this briefing, we will be invited to a soccer match with the kids of the project (group vs kids or mixed teams, to be decided). Those wishing not to participate in the match will have other activities on the beach such as henna tattooers and hairstylists for braiding hairs. Refreshments and a fruit buffet will be able during this afternoon.
Suggestion: In order to contribute with the NGO group can donate training shirt, balls, or other soccer material.
– Option: Hair braiding professional
– Option: Henna tattoo professional
Bahia by Night: Dinner at Uauá Restaurant and Show at Miguel Santana Theater
Day 3 – Salvador
Option A) Full Day Praia do Forte w/ canoeing and nature walk at Sapiranga beach
The scenic Coconut Highway leads to Praia do Forte, a fishing village 80 kilometers north of Salvador, home to some of the best beaches in Bahia. The latter section of the drive north is flanked by the distinctive white sands of the sparse Restinga vegetation signaling that we are approaching Praia do Forte. First, we visit the ruins of the imposing Garcia D´Ávila castle (1556), once the home of the largest landowner in the New World, set on the lands of what was the first farm in Brazil. From here we have a panoramic view of the northern coastline. We then visit the headquarters of the TAMAR Project, the national sea turtle preservation project, and one of Brazil´s most successful ecological programs. The visitors´ center provides a unique up-close view of these majestic animals. Lunchtime sees us in one of the many fine restaurants in the village.
Lunch at Restaurant Sabor da Vila (or similar)
After lunch a short drive to Sapiranga Reserva where we make a brief visit to the Sapiranga sustainable forest project. From here we take to the forest trails for a hike under the canopy of the forest to the banks of the Pojuca River. Kayaks and Canadian style canoes will be waiting for us here, and after a short lesson in how to maneuver these crafts, we depart downstream, rowing for approximately 1 hour to the mouth of the river where the river meets the ocean. Refreshing coconut water will be served and, after time for a refreshing swim on an appropriated beach area, we take to another short trail to the awaiting coach and return to the hotel. Note: Due to the size of the group we may have to split the group in two, rotating activities and meeting broth sub-groups during lunch.
Option B) Full Day Private Schooner bay Cruise
Farewell dinner at Boi Preto Churrascaria (traditional gaucho Brazilian BBQ)
Day 4 – Salvador – Foz do Iguaçu.
Transfer from Hotel to the Airport and flight to Foz do Iguaçu. Arrival in Foz do Iguaçu and transfer to the hotel on the Argentinean side.
All the formalities have been completed in advance. During the check-in, a welcome drink is served. Check-in takes place in a separate area.
Destination description Foz do Iguaçu
The world-famous and most spectacular waterfalls, a huge National Park and the largest hydroelectric plant in the world make the population of around 270000 Foz do lguaçu rightly proud of its attractions. The waterfalls (in the three-country triangle between Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil) are a natural wonder of first quality. The more than 270 small and big waterfalls make their way along with a large rock and rain forests and fall with an incredible force of up to 85 meters in depth. Often the rainbow reflected in the water and it is interesting to observe that the water may have some different colors (because of varying lime and mineral values). The fauna and flora in the region are extremely varied.
Half Day Cataratas Falls Argentinean side
In contrast to the Brazilian side where you are even closer to the falls. There is a train that leads to the river beyond the platform. From here you have a spectacular view of the largest waterfall, the Devil’s Throat. In this experience, you see the cascading waters from above. Then we go to the “lower trail”, where you can see from below the natural spectacle.
Lunch at the national park on the Argentine side and Gran Aventura speed boat trip. The adventurous way to discover the waterfalls and the National Park. By jeep through the jungle and the Zodiac speed boat to the falls. Departure from the hotel via the Cataratas Highway to the “Macuco trail”. With old Willy jeep in the convoy, we go on a nature trail through the middle of the forest. It is held to explain the flora and fauna. After the jeep tour, we continue on foot, 600 yards through the woods to the Macuco waterfalls and then to the bank of Iguaçu River. Here begins the most spectacular part of the trip, a boat trip up the River. In safe, open Zodiac speed boats with outboard motors and with a capacity of 12 to 20 passengers. We drive up the river in the middle of the Iguaçu Canyon where we enjoy the breathtaking views in a short distance to the cascading Iguaçu Falls. If the water level of the river permits, we can approach the falls, which is an unforgettable experience. Then return to the jeeps and buses
By Night: La Aripuca. At the arrival of La Aripuca, a local guide will explain to the visitors the reason, motives and objectives of the place. Once inside the building, the Guaranian Indians will dance and sing and the guests will gain a souvenir. Entering the Aripuca will be served a welcome cocktail with background music played by an Arp. Still leaded by the local guide, he’ll keep on explaining about the corresponding places and products of the Dándoles area, about its structure and originality. The tour ends in the “Las Termitas” room, where the dinner will be served. Including Cocktails, Drinks, and background music.
The tables are presented in white tablecloths, roads, center tables, chairs with white covers, starter plate, main course, white cloth napkins, water glass, wine glass, champagne glass, all the tables will have a champagne cooler and ice tongs.
Day 5 – Foz do Iguaçu
Full-Day visit to the waterfalls Brazilian side and Bird Park and Itaipu-hydropower plant.
A natural phenomenon, which we can observe very closed. There are 275 small, isolated waterfalls, which form a common front at high tide. Furthermore, there are 19 major waterfalls.
A short walk of 200 meters. You enjoy a beautiful view of the falls and on the Argentine side. Here begins a 1-kilometer trail through the forest where you see more and more of the mighty waterfalls and perhaps even small animals, birds and butterflies. At the end of the trail, it takes you to a platform from which you are only a few meters down from the supporting water masses. Enjoy an unforgettable natural spectacle. Then we take the elevator up to the main road and walk back to the hotel.
Near the Iguaçu National Park is an exotic aviary. During the tour, most of the colorful native birds fly freely over your head. In addition, you can admire the colorful plant life in the ever so many exotic animals is seeing.
Optional helicopter flight (not included in the total price)
The regular flight by helicopter over the “Cataratas” – waterfalls takes 10 minutes. If pre-booked, 35-minute flights can be arranged. The longer flights are over the falls, the three-country triangle, over the cities Foz do Iguaçu (Brazil), Puerto Iguazú (Argentina), and Ciudad del Este (Paraguay), as well as the Itaipu Dam (the largest in the world).
Lunch at Restaurant Porto Canoas overlooking the falls
Itaipu (Guarani: Itá = “rock, stone,” i = “the one who” pu = “sounds” ugs “sings”), also called “Itaipu Binacional” because of the participation of two nations, is the name of the hydropower plant, the Itaipu Dam and the Itaipu lake on the border between Paraguay and Brazil. Until the conclusion of the Three Gorges dam in China in 2006, the Itaipu power plant was the largest on the earth in general. Due to the high utilization of the turbine, Itaipu remains in the first place of annual energy production even after 2006. We visit, on the Brazilian side, the information center where is shown a documentary film about the construction and operation of the plant. Then we take the regular bus tours to visit the power plant.
Option A) By Night: River Dinner on Katamaran
The tour is done on a yacht boat with a capacity for 40 people, leaving from the maringá fishing club, on the banks of the Paraná river. On the water tour, the explorer navigates the Iguassu River, passing by the three borders landmark, where the architecture of the space of the Americas draws attention. To complete the navigation through the Iguassu river, the boat goes to the Tancredo Neves bridge between Brazil and Argentina. Then the boat gets into the waters of the Parana river, “paranazão”, as it is known in this region. Its flow rate is twelve times greater than that of the Iguassu River, forming one of the largest river systems in the world, running through an impressive canyon of basalt. In the paraná river, we sail up to the friendship bridge between Brazil and Paraguay, and we approach the Acaray island. On the tour return ride, we offer a service board with a tropical fruit cocktail without alcohol. This Exclusive Tour includes a two hours yacht ride, Dinner, beverage package and live music.
Option B) By Night: Private dinner and party at a Gaucho-farm
Today is a great gaucho evening. Gauchos are the cowboys from southern Brazil and northern Argentina. We spend the evening on a farm a few miles outside the city. The farm is located in the middle of very green and lush vegetation. The total area of 100,000 m2 with lakes, rivers, and waterfalls. Gauchas (young ladies) welcome us in their traditional costumes with a caipirinha and a cup of hot black beans and we enjoy also a firework. The BBQ is for the Gauchos not just a meal, but a cultural and gastronomic event which is celebrated almost daily. A unique experience to see the pride and joy they cook the meat. A band is playing beautiful folk music and dance troupe performance traditional dances, including Argentine Tango, Paraguayan Polka and various Brazilian dance styles. Everyone is cordially invited to dance together.
Option C) By Night: Dinner and Show at a Rafain
Day 6 – Foz do Iguaçu – Rio de Janeiro
Transfer to the airport. Flight to Rio de Janeiro
Arrival in Rio de Janeiro and transfer to the Hotel. On the trip, a Mulata serves fruit juices and batidas
All the formalities have been completed in advance. During the check-in, welcome drink is served. Check-in takes place in a separate area.
Destination description Rio de Janeiro
Rio is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is idyllically situated between the mountains and the sea. Numerous bays, small islands, rocks and beautiful coastlines shape the fascinating landscape. The beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema are among the most beautiful beaches and are world-famous. The approximately 6.5 million inhabitants counting city also has many attractions and recreational spots. The best known are probably the 395-meter sugar loaf “Pão de Açúcar” with a wonderful view over Copacabana. Rio’s most famous mountain, Corcovado, is 709 meters high (Cristo Redentor / Christ statue). This was upgraded in early 2003 and is now accessible to wheelchair users. The city has spruced itself up in the last two years in many aspects and present a new lifestyle to the visitors. Rio offers a variety of entertainment and cultural events such as concerts, theater, shows, bars and restaurants
Dinner at Hotel or outside Restaurant
Late-night Activities: a lot of Bar’s and Clu“At View” Restaurants at Copacabana, Ipanema, Leblon, or Lapa till the early morning. Insider suggestions from our staff and guides
Day 6 – Rio de Janeiro
City Tour Rio de Janeiro
The bus will drive into the old town. The city was founded in 1565 and was 197 years long, the capital of Brazil. In the center, we find many traces of the past. A walking tour takes visitors to the arches of Lapa and the old Carioca Aqueduct from 1723. Another must is the Imperial Palace, where the declaration of independence was signed in Brazil. The visitor will enjoy the charm of the artworks that are exhibited in the museum.
Option A) Lunch at Restaurant Don Camillo, Copacabana
Option B) Restaurant Rayz, Ipanema
Option C) Confeitaria Colombo, Center (also possible for a short visit and a wonderful Brazilian Coffee)Beautiful 113 years old restaurant and cafeteria in the center of Rio. A visit is a must. In a split of seconds, you escape the hectic of Rio’s Center and get into a quiet place from the past.
We go to the Sugar Loaf in the Urca district and take a cable car. The ride is divided into two sectors. The first ride takes you to Urca Hill, 220 meters above sea level after a first look and short walk you can take the second cable car to the top, 396 meters above sea level from there you have magnificent panoramic views across the City.
Cocktail and Samba-Trio (Optional not included)
After returning from the top, a nice cocktail will be offered in Urca Hill. One of the world’s most beautiful panoramic views over the beaches of Copacabana, Botafogo, Flamengo, the city center, the Rio – Niteroi Bridge, and Corcovado (Christ Statue). While the group enjoys the sunset and the beautiful view, the national drink Caipirinha is served. A good start for the evening program. Include a cocktail caipirinhas, beer, soft drinks and mineral water. A “Samba Trio” will entertain the group
Rio by night. Dinner at Churrascaria
One of the best BBQ restaurants in Rio, which offers a huge selection of cold and hot dishes. The meat is brought on
skewers to the table.
Option A) Marius Degustare
Option B) Churrascaria Palace
Option C) Churrascaria Fogo de chão
Late night Activities: a lot of Bar’s and Clubs at Copacabana, Ipanema, Leblon or Lapa till the early morning. Insider suggestions from our staff and guides
Day 7 – Rio de Janeiro
Full day Schooner Tour Guanabara By, MAC Niteroi, Bicycle Tour and sunset cocktail at Ipanema Beach
20 minutes Bus ride to “Marina da Gloria” at Flamengo where we embark on a schooner (150 Pax Capacity). Wonderful tour (2 or 4 hours) through the Guanabara Bay enjoying Rio’s landscape from the sea. Visit to MAC Museum of Contemporary Art in Niteroi.
Open bar, snacks and fruits on board (included)
The group is served with tropical drinks a discretion. (Caipirinha / Caipiroska), soft drinks, beer, water, fruit juices, snacks and fruits
A great fun! Surprisingly appears a “Pirate Schooner” and attacks the ship and enters it. Approximately 12 pirates (male and female Mulatos) in pirates costumes make a huge spectacle with fireworks and “water bombs” and enable the participants in terror. The pirate ship is decorated accordingly. After terror and entering our schooner, they all begin dancing, singing and laughing with samba music.
Lunch at Restaurant Brasilerinho
After lunch Bicycle Tour Copacabana / Ipanema and Sunset Cocktail
Rio by Night. Dinner at Restaurant Aprazivel
One of the top Restaurants in Rio de Janeiro with a breathtaking view over Rio de Janeiro. A favorite place of Bono Fox and Madonna while staying in Rio de Janeiro
Dance show Ginga Tropical, Leblon
Late-night Activities: a lot of Bar’s and Clubs at Copacabana, Ipanema, Leblon, or Lapa till the early morning. Insider suggestions from our staff and guides
Day 8 – Rio de Janeiro
Full-Day St. Teresa Artists Quarter, Tropical Rain Forest, and Corcovado by Jeep
Visit the great, vibrant artists’ quarter of St. Teresa’s, the tropical rainforest and one of the most famous sights in the world: the Corcovado. Our tour takes us in open jeeps to 710 meters high Christ state. We ride through the world’s largest tropical rain forest within the city limits, the Tijuca Forest. The forest separates the south from the north. We enjoy the fresh air and beautiful views already on the way up, which takes about 45 minutes. The view is unique. Return to the hotel.
Lunch at Restaurant Mineira, Humaita or Restaurant Os Esquilo, Tijuca Forest
Rio by night. Dinner and Dancing at Rio Scenarium (reserved tables)
Then we then drive to Rio Scenarium, a music venue that is frequented by locals. The Rio Scenarium is a three-floor building in the neighborhood of Lapa, at the Centre. Previously antiques were sold in this building and even today it has the charm of the ancient institutions. It is the place to go as there is authentic live music with well-known and lesser-known performers. There is a floor for everyone. The more the group is down, the louder it gets. And the later it gets the more people are joining. Professional and beginner are dancing together and everybody has fun.
Day 9 – Rio de Janeiro
Morning at leisure.
Shopping, swimming pool, beach or relax.
Transfer to the Airport. Flight to Europe