Itinerary Highlights
  • A bohemian spirit in Rio, colonial architecture in Paraty, Metis culture in Salvador: three faces of Brazil
  • Former fazenda (farmhouse) in Santa Teresa, a Bahia home in the Pelourinho: charming places to see in the heart of the city
  • Play Robinson Crusoe on Boipeba Island: enjoy the gentle life and walking on fine white sand
  • Rio by night, percussion lessons, Salvador in the footsteps of Jorge Amado: all our usual additional services

Contact one of our Brazil specialists + 44 (0) 20 3958 6120

AN ENCHANTING BRAZIL

Rio is mythical. Think: the Sugarloaf Mountain, the statue of Christ the Redeemer with arms spread wide on the Corcovado promontory, facing the most beautiful bay in the world. Rio means beaches. Bikinis. The bossa nova, football. Carnival. And in the elevated Santa Teresa district, celebrated by directors, composers, writers, painters, Rio is also a refuge for artists - houses with decadent European splendour, terraces in the shade of the great banana trees, and a bohemian ethos. Paraty, in the shelter of a bay cut out of the landscape facing the Atlantic, this white port town is bathed in light, preserved Portuguese architecture - pousadas with whitewashed walls,
heavy wooden doors painted in bright colours, hiding patios of orchids, bougainvilleas and ferns, surrounded by transparent waters, interlacing islands, deserted white sandy beaches, accessible only by boat, and the tropical forest that stretches right down to the ocean edge. Salvador de Bahia or, to give it its full name, Sao Salvador de Bahia de Todos los Santos, the most African of the cities in Brazil, merges sub-Saharan and Portuguese cultures, even belief systems. This town is a sanctuary with its 365 churches, one for every day of the year: baroque cathedrals or blue and white basilicas, which host candomble religious masses in honour of deities known as orishas. Off Salvador, Boipeba is a pristine island with 12 miles of pristine beach, mangrove forests and coconut groves. Boipeba is an Eden that has been preserved by its inhabitants. The centre of gravity is Velha Boipeba, the largest of the island's four villages - home to around 1,000 inhabitants and a few houses under the glare of a heavy sun - there are no cars, only mules pulling carts loaded with coconuts or fishing nets.

YOUR TRIP

TO Rio, you will stay on an ancient fazenda, where coffee was grown in the 19th century, out of sight, in the heart of a lush garden, planted with mango and palm trees inhabited by little monkeys that come and go. It's enchanting accommodation where naive art rubs shoulders with traditional crafts. In Paraty, you stay in an 18th-century merchant's house, whose five rooms with exotic wood flooring are graced by antique Portuguese and Brazilian furniture. In Salvador, we welcome you to Villa Bahia, in the Pelourinho district: a stone's throw from the most beautiful of Salvador's Baroque churches, Sao Francisco and a haven of calm ideal for discovering the bustling city. And on the island of Boipeba, you stay, between sea and mangroves, in a wooden house painted in pastel hues and facing the sea. Not to be missed: breakfast is ordered by opening the shutters and is served in a large basket on the terrace. Logistics - In Rio, you have a tour with a local who takes you out to discover Rio at night: rooftops of Ipanema, electro bars in the alternative district of Botafogo – 'BotaSoho' - or the choro clubs of Lapa, to suit your musical taste. We have also included in your itinerary a private visit to the colonial village of Paraty, and a day of hiking to the indigenous village of Ponta Negra, where the local Caicaras still live by fishing. In Salvador, you are introduced to percussion, before exploring the city in the footsteps of the great writer Jorge Amado. And throughout your journey, you have the contact details of our local Concierge who can be reached at any time.

Route

Everything is 100% tailored to you
DAY 1

Flight to Rio De Janeiro

Upon arrival in Rio, private transfer to the Santa Teresa district, set on a hill overlooking the city. We love Santa Teresa's bohemian character, its terraces in the shade of banana trees, its houses with European splendour, its coveted restaurants... Accommodation for three nights in an old fazenda (farmstead), where coffee was grown in the 19th century, renovated to become one of the most luxurious hotels in the district. Safely hidden away out of sight, in a beautiful garden, spend time here between the swimming pool and the spa. The rooms, with their stylish tropical decor, are vast and very bright; concrete, lime, slate combine with contemporary Brazilian design furniture. From the hammock on your terrace, you overlook Rio and its bay. And in every corner there are traditional crafts and art, combining contemporary and naive art. The gourmet restaurant offers one of the best spots to eat in the entire city.

DAY 2

Rio de Janeiro

Things to see and do - Visit the Museu de Arte Moderna, built in 1960 by Alfonso Eduardo Reidy, for its perfect architecture - shop for a bikini at aptly named Bumbum - chill on Ipanema - observe trends in contemporary art at the Anita Schwartz gallery - see the Maracana Stadium and the huge concrete cone of Sao Sebastiao Cathedral, Rio twin temples - indulge in churrasco (grilled meat) and feijoada (black bean and meat stew) - go shopping in the bohemian district of Lapa: Portuguese colonial houses in bright colours reinvented as second-hand clothes shops, vintage shops, and antique galleries full of lovely mid-century Brazilian furniture - sip Amazonian fruit juice in the shade of a courtyard in Leblon, after an afternoon's shopping.
Included in the itinerary - You have an appointment with a local who will take you to discover his favourite bars, to experience Rio by night, and spend your remaining energy on Ipanema rooftops, trendy bars in Leblon, electro bars in Botafogo's alternative neighbourhood (nicknamed by some BotaSoho) or samba clubs, or Lapa choro, the bohemian heart of Rio.

DAYS 6 to 5

Paraty

Already included in the itinerary - A hike in Ponta Negra. One cannot imagine a stay in Paraty without exploring its coastline: a myriad of islands in a bay protected from the prevailing winds, and hundreds of deserted beaches as pristine as when the first Portuguese sailors discovered them. You will reach Ponta Negra, in Juantinga Reserve by boat. 300 indigenous Caicaras live in this small village on a cove, a few houses between the dense rainforest and golden sand. Everyone here lives by fishing. In the late afternoon, the fishermen can be seen off the creek as they lift up their huge fish-laden nets by the strength of their arms alone.

DAY 7

PARATY - RIO - SALVADOR

Transfer by private car, with driver, to Rio airport and flight to Salvador de Bahia. Private transfer to the heart of the Pelourinho district and three nights' accommodation at Villa Bahia , which combines two colonial-era houses to create a discreetly sophisticated hotel. The rooms' furniture and colour palette evoke colonial Portuguese culture, while remaining unmistakenly Brazilian. In the restaurant, the chef brilliantly produces a cuisine that combines the best of both France and Brazil. There are two cool patios where you can relax with a caipirinha. You can fully unwind in the pool, a luxury in this district. From the terrace, a delightful panorama of the rooftops and bell towers of the Old Town. In the morning, when you open the windows overlooking Sao Francisco and the colourful walls of the ancient houses bordering the square, and an Angolan samba melody reaches your ears, you know you're in the spiritual heart of Brazil.

DAY 8

SALVADOR DE BAHIA

Founded in 1549, Sao Salvador da Bahia de Todos os Santos (to give the city its full name) was Brazil's first capital. It is divided into two parts: the upper town and the lower town. The lower town runs along the gulf, incuding the harbour, the Mercado Modelo (the old customs building) and the Cathedral of the Transfiguration. And also the beautiful houses at the base of the mountain; narrow, steeply sloping streets with glazed painted tiled facades, narrow staircases, the small bars of the old quarter of Ribeira. Huge elevators - the Lacerda and the Tabuao - and funiculars connect the lower town to the upper town, where, on the hillside, the criss-crossing steep streets of the Pelourinho district are found. Here you'll find large two-storey houses, lined up with their pink, blue or ochre facades, with broad wooden jacaranda panelled floors, and some of the masterpieces of the Brazilian Baroque: the Cathedral, the Sao Francisco Church, the largest Jesuit church in the country, completed in 1723, adorned with sculptures illuminated with gold, its cloister softened with glazed painted tiles. And everywhere, candomble (religious rites) squares and casas-de-santo (informal shrines) where orishas (minor deities) are worshipped.
Things to do and experience- Stroll through the streets of Pelourinho to experience the rhythm of Bahia - try capoeira (a martial art/dance) - enjoy the pleasures of a tropical beach - visit the Vila Velha Theatre, one of the most beautiful places in Bahia, where Caetano Veloso, Maria Bethania, and Gilberto Gil started their careers in the 1960s - lunch on acaraje 'fireballs' - white bean and shrimp doughnuts fried in palm oil, classified as part of Brazil's intangible heritage, bought from a Bahia woman dressed in white lace - attend a candomble ceremony in a Catholic church - sip a cachaca, sugar cane brandy.
Not to be missed: the Pierre Verger Foundation. The French ethnologist and photographer, born in 1902, settled in Salvador de Bahia in 1946 and never left. He discovered a culture influenced by the heritage of the descendants of African slaves and undertook to document the various aspects of Afro-Brazilian culture, including the candomble, a religion that combines animist beliefs of African origin and indigenous, Catholic influences, worshipping orishas, deities linked to natural elements. The foundation has displays of Pierre Verger's photographs, in the house in which he lived until his death in 1996.
Already included in the itinerary - A private percussion course. Percussive rhythms are part of the everyday life of every Bahian inhabitant and are at the centre of social life. This course offers the opportunity to become immersed in the atmosphere.

DAYS 9 to 11

SALVADOR DE BAHIA

Included in the itinerary - a tour of Jorge Amado's Bahia. 35 novels and short stories, theatre, poetry, some 30 million copies sold in Brazil, and adaptations for cinema and TV series: Jorge Amado, 'Jorge', as everyone here calls him, is the most popular writer in the country. He was the first major Brazilian writer to have a black man as his hero (from his first book 'Bahia de Todos-os-Santos', written in 1935), throughout his works, going against the tide, he would describe the richness of Brazil's diverse population. 'You can go all around the world, but never will you find a city so rich in history, lyricism, picturesque and profound poetry,' he said of his city, Salvador. Included in the itinerary: an immersion in the world of the great writer, with a visit to the house where he lived with his second wife Zelia, and their family; then a visit to a house in Yemanja, orisha of the sea, fish and shipwrecks - Jorge Amado was one of the first to rehabilitate candomble religious beliefs so despised by the elite.

A la carte

Historic Salvador through the Pelourinho district

An urban walk for lovers of history, architecture and colonial churches, and to decipher the past in Brazil's first capital through discovery of the Pelourinho, the largest Baroque colonial architectural ensemble, but with a distinctly African soul. Each square bears an evocative name, each church has its particular influence, each street echoes a tradition. The tour takes you back to a distant era: that of sugar cane, of Portugal's heyday and its influence on the world.
Optional - Half-day, with a private guide

A Rough Idea of Price

Dependent on season, accommodation and activities
The estimated cost for this trip is from £4,400 to £5,500 per person. The final cost of the trip depends on how it is tailored for the individual. The final cost will vary according to several factors, including the level of service, length of trip and advance booking time. The exact price will be your personal quote. The average price for this trip is £4700 per person.
  • International flights with a scheduled airline
  • Domestic flight Rio/Salvador
  • Airline taxes and fuel surcharge
  • Private transport airports/hotels/airports
  • Rio/Paraty private car transfer with driver
  • Transfer Salvador/Boipeba/Salvador by private car and boat
  • Three-night stay in Rio in a superior double room, breakfast included
  • Three-night stay in Paraty in a double room, breakfast included
  • Three-night stay at Villa Bahia in Salvador in a superior double room, breakfast included
  • Four nights in Boipeba, in a double bungalow, breakfast included
  • The discovery of Rio by night accompanied by a local
  • Discovering the colonial village of Paraty, with a private guide
  • Day hiking in Ponta Negra, private car and boat transfers, with a private guide
  • Private percussion course in Salvador
  • Half-day visit to Salvador in the footsteps of Jorge Amado, with a private guide
  • Our local Concierge service
  • A few of the benefits of travelling with us
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    Contact one of our Brazil specialists