Enth­ra­lled by Nature

RURAL TOURISM IN BRAZIL IS ONE OF THO­SE PEAK EX­PE­RIEN­CES WHE­RE BODY AND SOUL ARE HARMONIZED WITH THE BOUNTIES MOTHER EARTH HAS TO OF­FER

Excelencias Turísticas del caribe y las Américas - - Destino / Destiny -

Brazil is a land bles­sed by nature. It is per se a te­rri­tory tee­ming with mys­te­ries dyed in green and blue, a pla­ce whe­re light ac­qui­res mi­racu­lous sha­des. Its daunting lands­ca­pes, com­bi­ned with the hos­pi­ta­lity of its peo­ple, ma­ke the South Ame­ri­can giant one of the most sought-af­ter des­ti­na­tions for the prac­ti­ce of rural tourism.

Alt­hough ur­ban de­ve­lop­ment has trig­ge­red a dra­ma­tic exo­dus from the country­si­de to the city, thus broa­de­ning the gap bet­ween rural and ur­ban areas, the­re is now an in­ver­se pro­cess prom­pted by the gro­wing num­ber of peo­ple who seek to get away from the big city stress and set out on a quest for un­ruf­fled and quiet pla­ces whe­re nature pre­vails.

This “re­turn” to the country­si­de has ope­ned up a win­dow of op­por­tu­ni­ties for the tra­vel industry, es­pe­cially as far as out­doors to­dos are con­cer­ned, pri­ma­rily lin­ked to such con­cepts as sus­tai­na­ble tourism, eco­tou­rism, agro-tourism and ethno-tourism.

No won­der then that the up­co­ming Gra­ma­do Tourism Fes­ti­val –an event in which pro­fes­sio­nals from Brazil and ot­her coun­tries gat­her to pro­mo­te tra­vel des­ti­na­tions and pro­ducts, to dis­cuss mar­ket trendsetters, sha­re know­led­ge and unearth new bu­si­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties- pro­mo­te the po­ten­tial of rural tourism as a ri­sing mo­da­lity.

So­me of the most im­por­tant des­ti­na­tions in this ni­che are nestled in such well-known sta­tes as Rio de Ja­nei­ro, Sao Pau­lo or Mi­nas Ge­rais. In tho­se lo­ca­tions, the in­ter­ac­tion with nature and gas­tro­nomy are key ele­ments when it co­mes to ran­king the qua­lity of the lo­cal ac­com­mo­da­tions.

A very po­pu­lar kind of lod­ging in tho­se areas is the ha­cien­da ho­tel. The­se ac­com­mo­da­tions gi­ve vi­si­tors the chan­ce to fully melt in­to the en­vi­ron­ment, learn about the pro­duc­ti­ve ac­ti­vi­ties and plun­ge them­sel­ves in­to the his­tory and culture of the various en­cla­ves, whi­le per­for­ming great al­fres­co ac­ti­vi­ties, such as hor­se­back ri­ding, cy­cling and hi­king.

THE BEST KEPT SECRETS

Brazil is much mo­re than sam­ba, soc­cer, car­ni­vals and bea­ches; a who­le lot mo­re than The Re­dee­ming Ch­rist, the bea­ches of Ipa­ne­ma and Co­pa­ca­ba­na, or the Igua­zu Wa­ter­falls. It boasts a vi­brant in­land pa­ra­di­se that goads vi­si­tors to ven­tu­re out in­to the heart of the country as long as they are wi­lling to un­ra­vel so­me of the vast country's best-kept secrets of nature.

As far as ha­cien­da ho­tels are con­cer­ned, Mon­te Ver­de in Mi­nas Ge­rais is one of the most em­ble­ma­tic lod­ges. Right the­re, nature re­veals it­self in its most pris­ti­ne sta­te –it is said that the air that you breat­he up the­re is over 90% pu­re- and allows peo­ple of all ages to en­joy a wel­co­ming and cha­llen­ging experience in the sa­me breath. As it's per­ched on a lo­ca­tion that stands over 1,500 me­ters high, many see it as a pla­ce to deal with ex­tre­me sports, li­ke the zi­pli­ne and bun­gee jum­ping.

Anot­her pla­ce that packs a wa­llop is Ati­baia, in Sao Pau­lo, whe­re vi­si­tors can spend va­lua­ble ti­me wor­king in farms that har­vest or­ga­nic pro­ducts or drop by an­cient es­ta­tes that look un­ri­va­led for ama­zing hor­se­back ri­des. The vi­sit sche­du­le is ex­ten­si­ve and co­vers the most unex­pec­ted pla­ces, li­ke the dis­ti­lle­ries of hand­ma­de ca­chaça or the flo­wer plan­ta­tions.

Fi­lled up with moun­tains, fo­rests, ca­ves, un­der­ground la­kes and wa­ter­falls, the Cha­pa­da Dia­man­ti­na Na­tio­nal Park, in the sta­te of Bahia, al­so stands tall. Its list of countless at­trac­tions is top­ped by Fu­maça wa­ter­falls or the dazz­ling En­chan­ted Well. The­re are op­por­tu­ni­ties for all li­kings and pre­fe­ren­ces. You can go hi­king down the old paths of pre­cious me­tal see­kers or just do so­me hor­se­back ri­ding, spe­lun­king, di­ving and raf­ting.

For cof­fee lo­vers, the­re is a man­da­tory stop in Vas­sou­ras, lo­ca­ted in a re­gion known as the Cof­fee Va­lley in Rio de Ja­nei­ro. The area reached its grea­test splen­dor in the 19th cen­tury when it be­ca­me known as the “city of cof­fee ba­rons.” The­re is no bet­ter pla­ce to get in touch with a sig­ni­fi­cant part of Bra­zi­lian his­tory and un­ders­tand the way in which tho­se po­wer­ful men li­ved. For exam­ple, in Ca­sa de la He­ra, tou­rists will see what the hou­sing and li­festy­le of cof­fee fa­mi­lies was ac­tually li­ke; and they can even ad­mi­re the sa­me fur­ni­tu­re and or­ga­ni­za­tion that the re­si­den­ce had in its splen­do­rous past. Al­so, the rural area has in­nu­me­ra­ble farms open for vi­sits. A good ca­se in point is Ca­choei­ra Gran­de, which har­kens back to 1820.

Stan­ding so­me 35 ki­lo­me­ters away from bustling Sao Pau­lo, the Pa­ral­hei­ros re­gion enth­ralls vi­si­tors with its trails in areas of well-pre­ser­ved nature, his­to­ri­cal and cul­tu­ral heritage, wa­ter ri­des cros­sing dams, as well as in­di­ge­nous tri­bes and or­ga­nic-crop farms, which as a mat­ter of fact, are com­ple­tely avai­la­ble for tou­rists. One of the most im­por­tant points on the pre­mi­ses is the cra­ter of Co­log­ne. The geo­lo­gi­cal for­ma­tion was car­ved by the fall of a me­teo­ri­te over 20 mi­llion years ago. Not far from the­re, the li­ke-na­me neigh­bor­hood, foun­ded by Ger­mans and whe­re the first Pro­tes­tant ce­me­tery in Brazil was ins­ta­lled, is just anot­her must-see.

São Ro­que, Am­pa­ro, São Pe­dro, Mon­te Ale­gre do Sul, Joa­nó­po­lis, São Jo­sé dos Cam­pos, Pin­da­mon­han­ga­ba, San­to Antonio do Pin­hal, Itú or São Ben­to do Sa­pu­caí are ot­her ci­ties which are si­mi­larly re­com­men­ded for vi­sits, pla­ces that can se­du­ce tou­rists ea­ger to feast eyes on the many won­ders that rural tourism in Brazil has to of­fer.

Bra­sil es un des­tino ideal pa­ra los aman­tes de las ru­tas a caballo, ci­clis­mo y sen­de­ris­mo. Brazil is an ideal des­ti­na­tion for lo­vers of hor­se ri­ding, cy­cling and hi­king.

Al­gu­nos de los des­ti­nos más des­ta­ca­dos en es­ta mo­da­li­dad se en­cuen­tran en Río de Ja­nei­ro, Sao Pau­lo y Mi­nas Ge­rais. So­me of the most outs­tan­ding des­ti­na­tions in this mo­da­lity are in Rio de Ja­nei­ro, Sao Pau­lo and Mi­nas Ge­rais.

Bra­sil es un pa­raí­so que in­ci­ta al vi­si­tan­te a aden­trar­se en el in­te­rior de su na­tu­ra­le­za. Brazil is a pa­ra­di­se that en­cou­ra­ges vi­si­tors to get in­si­de their nature.

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