Reader Question From Kath:
I’d love to go to Brazil but I’m not sure if it’s a great (safe) place to visit at the moment, let alone, with a young family in tow.
I’d love to see the city of Rio de Janeiro, and the Amazon, but that’s all that’s on my radar.
Can you provide any advice re. itinerary?
I’m going by instinct here and my own experience.
When I was in my 20s and desperate to explore South America during my work holidays, I was advised by the tour organiser (keep in mind, I was on a tight budget) to, at that time, avoid travelling on my own there as a young, single, woman.
I listened to that advice, and respected the opinion of the locals. However, in the last 10 year I’ve travelled extensively through South America, albeit with a group and on a bigger budget, and I’d thoroughly recommend it. I’d even say that it’s possibly safer going with your family than it is solo.
Certainly, Brazilians love children, but do keep in mind, this is quite an expensive country simply to get to and this isn’t the sort of place you scrimp on hotels. BUT, I’ve never once really felt unsafe there, I just have to be honest with you on that. I’m from the heart of Sydney, I’ve moved to just outside of Melbourne, and I’ve had more hairy moments in those two cities than I’ve had right across South America.
So, here’s my advice from the heart. Go with a trusted tour company (I went with Scenic and you could follow their itinerary, but I do believe Responsible Travel is also very good) and don’t stay in cheap hotels.
Two hotels I have to recommend, that would be a treat for anyone to stay at, are: Hotel Belmondo in the middle of the National Park that accesses Iquazu Falls; and in Rio I loved the famous Copacabana Hotel. Dear Lord, it was wonderful. Right on the beach and I must add when I was there, so was Tom Cruise. So, hello, if it’s good enough for him, well…!
I did a Favela tour (loved it). I shopped up a storm; the malls are amazing and so is a store called The Farm. Check it out. I caught the cable car up to Christ The Redeemer; sailed the harbour; visited the museums…
I did all that’s on your wishlist and highly recommend it.
I didn’t walk the streets late at night. I always trusted my instincts. I had absolute faith in the company I kept.
I hope that’s ok to be so honest with you.
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