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Colonial Towns of Brazil

Overview

On this tour of the Colonial Towns of Brazil, visit the vibrant Rio de Janeiro as well as some of the country’s atmospheric colonial towns, learning about its fascinating history and its grand architecture as well as enjoying the wildlife on offer in this country!

The fifth largest country in the world, Brazil, with its abundance of land and resources, offered untold riches for those “discovering” the country in the 1500’s – and still does for those wishing to holiday here today! The influences of the European’s who settled in Brazil, fused together with the rich culture of the indigenous people, has created a lively holiday destination you can’t miss!

After exploring the history and culture of downtown Rio, you will spend the day in the nearby town of Petrópolis, also known as ‘The Imperial City of Brazil’. The summer retreat of the last ruler of the Empire of Brazil, Dom Pedro II, the picturesque city centre of cobbled streets and horse-drawn carriages is sure to charm!

Your next stop will be Paraty, a spectacularly situated town offering a backdrop of lush jungle and picture-perfect secluded beaches. Its well-preserved colonial center boasts 17th and 18th century buildings reflecting its important role as a port town during the Brazillian Gold Rush.

From here, your next town is Ouro Preto, another fascinating former colonial town and designated UNESCO World Heritage Site for its exceptional Baroque architecture. The tour continues with a visit to Recife, known as the “Venice of Brazil” due to its many rivers, bridges, islets and peninsulas and beautiful European architecture. This exciting city also offers a thriving cultural, entertainment and restaurant scene.

Your final stop will be Salvador de Bahia – and what better way to end this whirlwind tour of Brazil’s Colonial towns! Once the capital of Portugal’s vast New World colony, this energetic city offers almost unparalleled beauty and a sense of history.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival - Rio De Janeiro
Today you will arrive in Rio De Janeiro. You will be transferred from the airport to your hotel where you will have the rest of the day free to rest of explore.

Day 2: Rio De Janeiro
After breakfast you will enjoy a tour of the city, learning about Rio’s history and culture through its downtown attractions, where the most important and the richest symbols of Brazilian colonial art can be found. Afterwards you will be transferred back to your hotel to do some exploring of your own!

Day 3: Rio De Janeiro
Following breakfast, you will have a full day tour to Petrópolis, a small colonial town also known as ‘The Imperial City of Brazil’. This picturesque city of cobbled streets and horse-drawn carriages was once the summer retreat of the rich and powerful, and is still popular with the locals in Rio De Janeiro. Visit the old cathedral and the Summer Palace of Dom Pedro II, Brazil’s last Emperor. The palace is now a museum, housing a beautiful collection of crown jewels, furniture, paintings and tapestries from the days of the Empire. You will be transferred from here back to your hotel.

Day 4: Rio De Janeiro - Paraty
Following breakfast you will be transfer to Paraty, a superbly located town with a backdrop of lush jungle and secluded beaches. Take a stroll around its beautifully preserved colonial center stopping in the numerous art galleries and stores, or stepping back in time in the churches and museums. Indulge in the plethora of exquisite food, surrounded by this oasis of history and charm.

Day 5: Paraty
After breakfast, you will take a 5-hour schooner trip in Paraty's bay, where you will find over 65 tropical islands and dozens of beaches, each offering something different and all covered with vegetation that remains lush and colorful year round. The water of the bay is always the right temperature for swimming, diving and snorkeling.

Day 6: Rio De Janeiro - Ouro Preto
After breakfast, transfer back to Rio de Janeiro Airport for your short flight to Belo Horizonte. From here you will transfer to Ouro Preto, a masterpiece of Baroque Colonial Architecture in Brazil and also a Cultural Monument for Mankind, declared so by UNESCO. Spend the afternoon exploring this spectacular town at your leisure.

Day 7: Ouro Preto
After breakfast, begin your day by getting acquainted with the city of Ouro Preto. You will visit its major attractions including Saint Francis of Assisi’s Church, a masterpiece of the Brazilian religious architecture, with Aleijadinho wood and soapstone sculptures; Our Lady of Pilar, a church that marked the climax of the Golden Age of architecture, with carved works painted entirely in gold; The Museum of Mineralogy, part of the federal University of Minas Gerais; The Opera House and The Oratory Museum.

Day 8: Ouro Preto - Belo Horizonte - Recife
After breakfast, you will be transferred to Belo Horizonte Airport for your short flight to the spectacular seaside city of Recife. You will be met at the airport and taken to your hotel where the rest of your day will be at your leisure.

Day 9: Recife - Olinda
After breakfast, you will be taken out on a tour to the Boa Viagem beach, the longest stretch of urban seafront in Brazil. Renowned for its reefs and beautiful buildings, Recife ́s nickname is the ‘Venice of Brazil’. Stop for shopping at the Casa da Cultura, once a colonial prison. As if that’s not enough, you will also have the chance to visit Olinda, a remarkably well - preserved colonial city, founded in 1535. This city has been declared a World Heritage city by UNESCO in 1982 and you will enjoy a walking tour before being transferred back to your hotel.

Day 10: Olinda
Following breakfast, you will enjoy a full day at leisure to take in the sights. You may want to take an optional tour to relax on Porto de Galinhas beaches.

Day 11: Recife - Salvador
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Salvador. Salvador was the capital city of Brazil during Colonial times and is famous for its 365 churches, religious and historical treasures and also for its beaches. Upon arrival, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. The rest of your day will be at leisure.

Day 12: Salvador
Today is your final day, but what a way to finish off your tour! You will take a historical city tour to see the Upper and Lower Cities and the colonial remnants of their cobblestone paved streets and stucco buildings before having your final afternoon free for shopping and sighseeing.

Day 13: Departure
After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for your onward journey.

Map

Included:
  • Accommodation
  • Daily breakfast
  • Ground transport
  • Excursions/Activities mentioned in the itinerary (unless otherwise stated)
  • Bilingual guides
  • National Park, Natural reserves or museum entrance fees (Unless otherwise stated)
  • Not Included:
  • International flights
  • Internal flights (if applicable)
  • Airport taxes (if applicable)
  • Meals & drinks not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Tips & personal expenses
  • Essentials

    Are you wondering about flights, deposits and other bits and pieces? Here are a few items of essential information that could help with the planning of your trip with Tango Tours. If you have any questions please just contact us.

    International Flights
    Getting to Brazil is straightforward from most areas of the world, but you may find that the choice is bewildering, or you’re not sure about the easiest route. Tango Tours are experienced in planning flights and we are very happy to advise you on the different choices available. Because prices tend to increase closer to your departure date, we advise that you buy your international flight tickets as soon as you have made a decision about your tour. As an ATOL bonded tour operator, we can assist in your purchase of international flights. In fact, your entire tour can be protected under our ATOL licence by booking your international flight with us. Please note that flight tickets are non-refundable and 100% of your flight ticket price is payable on tour confirmation.

    Internal Flights
    As with international flights, Tango Tours' friendly and knowledgeable staff are on hand to book your internal flights for you if required. For some itineraries, you need to arrive at a particular destination at a required time/date therefore, it is vital that you book the correct flights and times of arrival. Our ATOL licence will protect your whole tour if your internal flights are purchased through us. Please note that flights are non-refundable and 100% of your flight ticket price is payable on tour confirmation.

    Payments
    To confirm your booking with Tango Tours, we require a payment of 20% of the ground-based arrangements and 100% of all flights. The remaining balance of your tour is then payable 10 weeks prior to departure. For any bookings made within these 10 weeks, the full amount is payable.

    Accommodation
    Let us know what standard of accommodation you require for your tour - we offer a range of standards to suit your requirements. These are subject to availability.

    Activities
    We provide brief activity/excursion information in the itinerary. If you would like more in-depth details regarding any included activity/excursion then contact us! Please note: itineraries may be subject to change.