Planning for my Brazilian vacation next year has been rather slow. Partly because I’ve been busy with work and trying to keep up with blogging, and also because I am the world’s biggest procrastinator.
The thing is, I just don’t even know where to start.
Brazil is such a large country and there’s so much that I want to do and see while I’m there. However, I know that realistically I’ll need more than a week or two to cover a fraction of the area. Plus, there are so many things I have to get done before I even settle on an itinerary (such as, submitting my passport application, maybe?).
So in an effort to get things in motion and to point myself in some direction, I’ve decided to post the top 10 things I want to do while in Brazil.
1. Sit on Jesus’ shoulder (see also, “visit Christ the Redeemer”): I know this is a lofty checkmark on my bucket list, but anybody can buy a ticket and SEE the Cristo Redentor. I want a further experience. I’ve seen videos where people have crawled inside the giant Jesus and sat on his shoulder admiring the views of Rio and I want to do the same. It’s one thing to admire the statue of Christ itself, but to admire the creation surrounding the city with Jesus… that would be a whole other experience.
2. Count every step of Escadaria Selarón: Okay, I know Wikipedia cites that there are 215 steps but I just want an excuse to really take my time and admire the work of Jorge Selarón. I’ve always had a love for the arts and I’m so fascinated by the creativity and effort behind the Chilean artists’ “tribute to the Brazilian people.” Plus, who doesn’t want to sit on the same steps where Snoop Dogg sat?
3. Participate in Rio’s Carnival parade: Or any major Carnival parade in Brazil. I’ve been told that you have to try out for the parades and seeing photos and videos of how serious Brazilians take this celebration, I’m under no impression that it’ll be a walk in the park. To be honest, I’d be happy walking next to the floats.
4. Make eye contact with Neymar: I’m no soccer buff, but I do enjoy the sport and really want to catch a game at the Maracanã. Sure, it’s a bit touristy, but how do you go to Brazil and NOT watch a
soccer— sorry, futebol game?
5. Safely wander around a favela: I probably sound like an ignorant tourist, but I think the favelas are so fascinating and so full of culture. I don’t feel like I can truly experience the Brazilian culture and get to know the local people without spending some time in a favela. I heard that these can be dangerous, but I’ve also heard that they’re much safer now. I believe in common sense so I don’t plan to wander around aimlessly advertising my “wealth” and foreign-ness, but if I could get to know people who live in these areas that would make my trip worth it.
6. Hike Sugarloaf and re-enact the Moonraker scene: Not exactly, but I do want to hike up Sugarloaf and maybe replay the James Bond scene in my head while riding the cable cars on the way down.
7. Play hopscotch on the giant water lilies in the Amazon River: I could spend an entire trip exploring the Amazon alone. The giant water lilies are just an excuse.
8. Samba with a native: Take note: I am not a dancer. I have as much rhythm as a plank. But I’m sure learning to samba with a native will be a good laugh for everyone.
9. Get a tan: Brazil has over 4,500 miles of coastline. If I come back pale, we have a problem.
10. EAT: If you know me, you know I love food almost more than life itself. I’m not a food connoisseur, just a lover of all things delicious and I hear that Brazilian food is to die for. I need to try the fresh seafood, the variety of fruits, and all the local comfort foods found on the streets. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
For the most part, I’m sure this is a very typical tourists’ list, but I don’t care. If I’m going to see Brazil, I’ll need to see it as a foreigner first. Then I want to see it as a native when I visit again. But first, I’m going to apply for my passport tomorrow.
Any other suggestions on what I MUST do while in Brazil? Leave a comment below!
(Note: None of these images belong to myself or this blog and were found using Google Images. I know it’s pathetic and incorrect to just plug in photos from the search engine and say “Photo credit: Google Images” so if any of these photos are your and you would like them removed from my blog, please let me know. Thanks.)