My Brazilian Experience...
Highs: Watching the capoiera dancers in the main square in Salvador; zip-lining into an ocean;
feeling like I was on holiday in Buzios; sunset on Ipanema Beach; sunset from Sugar Loaf; view from
Corcovado; Iguazú Falls.
Lows: My cluenessness when it comes to the Portuguese language; my debit card not working at
several of the machines; having to be on-guard when walking around the streets and beaches of Rio
de Janeiro and Salvador (after hearing of many robbed-at-knifepoint stories).
Best Moment: Seeing Rio from up above at Sugar Loaf while watching the sun go down; watching
the capoiera dancers in Salvador de Bahia.
Craziest Moment: Having the taxi driver from the Brazilian side of Iguazú Falls give me a
present of a little sample of perfume so that I could bring something home from Brazil.
Smells: Street food; post-rain smells.
Sounds: Drums (background music for the dancing); 'Girl from Ipanema' playing in 1,548 different
versions all over the place; the ocean; 'At the Copa' (though this was only heard when I was singing it
while walking along Copacabana Beach).
Sights: Bahia: Rio Valermho, Rio Barra and Pelourinho areas in Salvador; capoiera dancers in a
square (while sipping on a caipirinha); colored prayer ribbons; Morro de Sao Paulo - transportation
here being guys with wheel barrels (which are called their 'taxis'); Buzios and the surrounding areas;
Rio de Janeiro (Ipanema Beach); Sugar Loaf ($18 US); Corcovado ($18 US); Ipanema Beach;
Copacabana Beach; Iguazú Falls ($10 US).
Tastes: Caipirinhas; bananas in rodelo; marioc; fish and seafood in palm oil; tropical fruits; açai;
sushi; a candy that is a chocolate ball covered with chocolate sprinkles (sooo good!); aibam (a curry
soup); churrascuria; different raw fishes; filet mignon with an apricot sauce served with rice mixed
with a creamy brie cheese; grilled tuna.
Purchases: A sort-of dress thingy (very 'Brazilian' but I'm convinced I can pull it off while I am out
here); a jazz CD; a shirt.
Street Food: Caipirinhas; a bunch of fried stuff that I have no idea what it is; popcorn; fruits;
churrascuria; cashews; little balls of cheese bread.
Fun Food Finds: Hershey's cereal bars in banana flavor with chocolate coating; guarana soda.
Western Companies Out Here: McDonald's, Domino's; Sam's Club; Pizza Hut.
Other General Info...
Visa needed? Yes (for Americans). This needs to be obtained before entering the country. I got
this while I was in Santiago at the Brazilian Consulate.
Transportation: Flight from Salvador to Rio: ~$70US; Roundtrip ferry from Salvador to Morro
de Sao Paulo: ~$50US (also a 7 reial tourist tax upon getting to the island). Beware of taxi drivers who
will rip you off!
Type of currency? Brazilian Reials. About 2 reials is equal to $1 US.
Things Brazil Is Known For: Amazon Jungle; beaches; Carnevale.