Hello, fellow bloggers!
Today’s post is another one in my feature and I was debating a lot whether or not share this one. As much as I like sharing everything that Brazil has to offer, I love how this feature can open interesting discussions on the comments and I love to hear your feedback and personal stories regarding your own home countries. And I didn’t think this theme allowed much of that.
Therefore, I decided to change a bit the style of this post. Apart from introducing you all to these cities, I’ll also be sharing a random memory I have attached to it and asking for you to do the same in the comments: share a random, funny memory you have regarding a trip you’ve done in your own country! I’d love to hear all that!
I’ve been lucky enough to have the opportunity to do a ton of traveling in my own country. My mom also shares the feeling of wanderlust with me and so I’ve been taking trips to different parts of Brazil since I was a kid. Today, I’ll be sharing my top favorite places, but I’ve visited a lot more – those are just the most memorable ones.
ONE. RIO DE JANEIRO
Rio de Janeiro is probably the most well-known Brazilian city worldwide, and there’s definitely a reason for that. It is also one of the most stunning places I’ve ever been to.
When I first went to Rio, I imagined it would look a lot like Sao Paulo (where I live), but with a beach, but it’s absolutely nothing like it. There are so many lakes and rocks and hills, and it truly feels like a city in the middle of nature. It’s also incredibly hot – much hotter than any place I’ve ever been to – and most of the time I spend there was me sweating a bunch, lol.
I don’t know if I have any particular outstanding memory from my time in Rio. I’ve been to the city multiple times, with my parents, my grandma, family friends, and every single time I end up with a new beautiful memory. Out of my favorites, I have: walking around Museu do Amanhã (the massive building in the second picture) and watching the boats in the harbour; taking pictures by the lake; having ice cream for every meal, lol.
TWO. CAMPOS DO JORDÃO
This is a city in my own state, so it’s definitely the closest destination of all, and yet, I’ve only been there a couple times. Clearly, it was still remarkable enough, since it made it into the list.
Campos do Jordão is inspired off of European cities, due to its weather. Being located at the top of a mountain, it gets really cold during Winter, so it’s a really popular vacation spot during the months of July & August. I really love the fact that every time I’ve been there, it was cold but sunny – my #1 favorite weather.
On top of that, the European architecture is adorable. All the restaurants and stores are located in those tiny cabins and it’s so cute. The first time I’ve been there, my family stayed at a Canada-inspired hotel, and the decorations were all related to Canada’s culture, with bears, hockey sticks and jerseys and maple syrup for breakfast. Everything was just *so* adorable!
THREE. FOZ DO IGUAÇU
This is another really well-known city, since this is actually a natural waterfall located between Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. It’s truly a stunning location, though the weather is incredibly humid. One of the memories that stands out the most was walking out from the AC and having my sister’s glasses fog from the humidity. I’d never experienced such weather before!
Besides the beautiful waterfalls and being able to get really close from the water (
which is a little bit scary, not gonna lie), Foz do Iguaçu also has other really nice attractions. One of them is called ‘Parque das Aves’, which is this huge zoo with birds only, but they’re not in cages; in fact, you can touch them and play with them. I am terrified of all animals, so it wasn’t the best experience ever, but it was hilarious nonetheless.
FOUR. OURO PRETO & MARIANA
These two cities are located in the state of Minas Gerais, which is known for having a lot of old architecture from the Colonial days.
Brazil was colonized by Portugal and, therefore, a lot of our architecture is European inspired. These cities in particular were really important during that time, because they were located next to gold mines, so most of their habitants were also working in the mines.
Being such a Catholic country, there are also countless churches. They’re really interesting places, though, because they tell a lot about the local story. Plus, a lot of these churches were actually decorated with gold pieces, which just shows off the city’s status.
Recently, though, a really big tragedy happened in Mariana, one of the cities I’m mentioning. Maybe some of you heard of it, but a dam collapse pretty much flooded the entire city in mud. 19 people died and the consequences on the environment were even bigger, since the minerals in the water contaminated the river as well as the southern Atlantic Ocean. I was in the city years before the tragedy, so it’s crazy to think how much of the landscape I saw has changed after the accident.
Lastly, I have the city of Petrópolis, which is another historical location in Brazil. Brazil has a really interesting story related to the Portuguese Royal Family, since they actually lived here for a really long time. To be more specific, they lived in this pink house you see above.
The city of Petrópolis doesn’t have much apart from places that were once used by the Portuguese Royal Family, so it’s truly just for sight-seeing. But it’s really fascinating to visit places you’ve once heard about in History text books.
My favorite place, though, was Santos Dumont’s house. Santos Dumont is considered the inventor of the airplane and we get to see the place he lived most of his house, along with some of his original sketches. The architecture is super quirky and fun – there was a telescope at the roof of his house, which is super unique for any Brazilian house!
This is all I have to share for today. Now let me know in the comments any memories you have regarding trips you’ve done in your own country or your favorite place in your home town!