Brazil might have a reputation for being a tropical paradise with pulsating nightlife, but it’s also the ultimate family travel destination. Excellent boutique hotels, children-loving locals, and a low risk of receiving much-feared illnesses, such as malaria, in popular travel areas.
Brazil has a variety of destinations and activities to keep your kids entertained on vacation. There are an abundance of natural wonders to explore, such as beaches, national parks, caves, and the ocean, as well as exciting activities like snorkeling, cable car rides, zip-lining, and interactive museums.
A little bonus, as of June 2019 no visas are required to enter Brazil for US citizens.
Here’s why you should take your kids on a family-friendly trip to Brazil:
Ecotourism has become increasingly popular over the last few years, and Brazil is certainly no stranger to this current trend. Many hotels, activity companies, and service providers are waking up to the fact that ecotourism helps local communities to preserve the natural flora, fauna, and landscapes which Brazil is famous for, in particular, the Amazonian and Pantanal areas.
It’s not just natural areas which are embracing eco-tourism. Even cities like Rio have seen eco-friendly hotels and restaurants pop up in recent years, making many parts of the country a great choice if you want to make your family-friendly vacation to Brazil as green as possible.
Brazil is home to an abundance of wildlife, and there’s no place better to visit with your family than the Pantanal Reserve. This natural region, which encompasses the world’s largest tropical wetland area, is an animal spotter’s dream. There are well over 200 species of mammal, 80 species of reptile and a staggering 1,000 plus species of bird. The Pantanal is well-known for being the best place in the world to spot one of the most elusive animals – the jaguar. Other animals you’ll get the chance to see include tapir, capybara, macaws, giant anteaters, and caiman.
Because of the mix of cultures which have settled in Brazil, dining out shouldn’t be a problem for you and your family, even if they’re fussy eaters. There are plenty of Brazilian staples you should encourage your children to try, but if they’re not interested, you can find options which serve all manner of international fare, from pizza and burgers to sandwiches and tacos.
If you have small children, it’s good to keep in mind that portions tend to be on the larger side, so you may want to consider ordering for yourself and giving your kids some of your meal instead of ordering a meal each to save on waste.
Keep in mind it’s not advisable to drink the tap water or eat street food.
With the number of activities on offer for kids in Brazil, getting bored is not an option!
The main attraction for kids is the incredible natural landscapes, from the white, sandy beaches that stretch for miles to the exciting jungle. If you’re staying in Rio, the Tijuca urban forest has plenty of features your kids will enjoy, including the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue, the Cascatinha Waterfall, and riding the rail track of Corcovado. For those looking for safari experiences, the Amazon and the Pantanal deliver, with gorgeous eco-friendly accommodation options and tours which offer wildlife spotting and trekking.
The country is full of family-friendly swimming locations. Acajatuba Lake provides the unique experience of swimming with pink river dolphins, whereas Abismo Anhumas, a magnificent cave in the Anhumas Valley, offers boat trips and snorkeling in this spectacular abyss filled with stalactites and stalagmites.
There is every kind of accommodation option available, much of them cater to those traveling with children; from high-end beach resorts to eco-friendly hostels. For an impactful adventure experience your kids will love, you should consider staying at a jungle lodge. Highly recommended are the jungle lodges located near Manaus in Amazonas, especially during the high-water season as it’s an excellent area for kayaking. Most accommodation options also offer excursions, which can be tailored to your children’s needs.
If you’re planning to take your trip around a major holiday, think ahead as many hotels book out a year in advance and also require minimum night stays.
Health and Safety
Brazil is generally a safe country to travel to health-wise, although we recommend you check your government’s travel advice website for any issues before taking your trip as you’ll likely need vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Typhoid, and possibly Yellow Fever.
Travel to inner-city destinations shouldn’t require any anti-malarial medication; however, some rural and tropical areas, including the Amazon, are not malaria-free, so you’ll need to consider this when planning your trip. As we can’t give health advice, we suggest you talk to your doctor about any questions you may have.
If you’re planning on visiting the beachside, stay conscious of the Brazilian sun and mosquitoes; don’t forget the sunscreen and a decent insect repellent.
Brazil is a beautiful country to visit with children, whether they’re toddlers or teenagers. With a whole range of activities, accommodation, and food to choose from, now is a great time to consider planning that trip.