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Beach life and island-hopping in Brazil
Take a private boat around the turquoise lagoons of Paraty, learn to samba in Rio and hit Sugarloaf Mountain for sunset drinks
About your trip
Party animals and beach-lovers, look alive: our adventure to the sun-dappled mecca of Brazil is calling you with open arms.
Our getaway to this fabled land of palm trees and the warmest people on the planet really does live up to the hype. Join us as we escape to the UNESCO town of Paraty, with cobbled streets and a maze of hidden beaches. Hit our private boat to zip between jungle islands, exploring turquoise lagoons on stand-up paddleboards and snorkelling along the tropical coastline.
We’ll also spend time in iconic Rio, dancing with locals in a unique colonial townhouse and muddling up caipirinhas over the sunset skyline. Clamber aboard for sundowner cocktails on Sugarloaf Mountain and a mosey around the arty neighborhood of Santa Teresa. From seafood picnics to samba classes and lazy days on Ipanema beach, this escape has it all.
Dive right into the warming waters: Brazil is ready when you are.
- Local transport
- Most meals included
- Max 14 Flashpackers
- Atol protected
- Private airport transfers
Remember, flights aren't included. We're happy to help you find the best ones for you.
Day 01 CAIPIRINHAS AT SUNSET
Welcome to Rio de Janeiro! From the moment you set foot in this land of palm trees and sunshine, you can’t fail to be swept up by its swinging samba beat. Even the drive from the airport – by private transfer, naturally – is a delight, as you whisk along an Atlantic ocean avenue lined by rapturous beach crowds and hordes of sun lovers. This is a place where the people are as warm as the climate, and everywhere seems infused with an irresistible energy. Freshen up at your boutique hotel before a rooftop caipirinha lesson at sunset. Muddle up your own version of Brazil’s potent national cocktail, as you get to know your guide and fellow Flashpackers. Later on, we’ll head to a hip local neighborhood for dinner. If you still have energy afterward, it’s a Saturday night in Rio and the samba clubs will just be heating up – have your dancing shoes handy…
Day 02 SELFIES WITH JESUS AND A SANTA TERESA LUNCH
Have your bucket lists handy, because today we’re visiting a Wonder of the World. No trip to Rio would be complete without seeing Christ the Redeemer, so we’re heading up Corcovado Mountain to admire this epic statue, in all 125 feet of its towering splendor. It also happens to be a landmark in Flash Pack history, with our co-founder Lee’s “Selfie with Jesus” catapulting Flash Pack to fame back in 2014. Once you’ve snapped selfies of your own (at base level this time), we’ll head on over to the Bohemian district of Santa Teresa. Tuck into lunch at a buzzing local restaurant before an afternoon exploring the winding, tram-filled streets of this arty neighborhood. There are plenty of boutiques and old, tree-lined avenues to meander around, with glimpses of the ocean far below. We’ll then head back down to our hotel, where the party continues at beach level. This is Brazil; it’s rude not to…
Day 03 RAINFOREST TREKKING & SUNSET BEACHES
This morning, we’ll be off to an early start as we make for the rugged summits of Rio. We’ll follow a trail through the Tijuca Rainforest, a national park and one of the largest urban forests in the world. Learn all about the history of Rio as we walk, soaking up the rich flora and fauna surrounding us and gaining an insight into the unique ecology of the rainforest. If we’re blessed with good weather, you’ll enjoy sweeping panoramic views of the west coast of Rio, the lagoons of Barra and the powdery beaches of Ipanema and Leblon. Come afternoon, it’s time to unwind. You’ll have a few hours to take things at your own pace, before we gather again at evening at head to the beach. Marvel at a spectacular sunset over the open sea, as we toast to this beautiful city with cold drinks aplenty.
Day 04 COASTAL LIVING
This morning, we’re travelling south to Paraty, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After a five-hour drive through beautiful national parks, we’ll reach this picturesque town on the coast. Nestled amid tropical mountains and secluded beaches, Paraty is filled with colonial architecture and quaint cobbled streets. Traffic is not allowed in the town center due to the high tide, making it feel pleasantly, like stepping back in time. Settle into your hotel then spend the afternoon rambling around. A magnet for local artists, Paraty has a strong creative streak and you’ll find plenty of exhibitions and galleries tucked away in its colourful alleyways. After an amble around the shops and scenic waterfront with its white-wash buildings, settle at one of the pavement cafés for a glass of Portuguese rosé. In the evening, us Flashpackers will gather together for an al fresco feast before partying up a small town storm, Paraty-style.
Day 05 ISLAND-HOP A TROPICAL PARADISE
Grab your shades and swimming gear, a golden day of island-hopping awaits. Step aboard your private boat to cruise across the shimmering ocean in search of Paraty’s unspoiled beaches. With your local captain leading the way, zip between a labyrinth of hidden islands and lagoons. On board, you’ll find snorkelling gear and stand-up paddle boards, as well as an icebox brimming with cold drinks and a fresh seafood picnic. Keep a lookout for secluded spots, where we’ll dock up to stretch out on golden sands, bathe in tropical waters or hike through lush stretches of rainforest. The water is crystal-clear here, so a dash of snorkelling is a must, to paddle between schools of colourful fish. Alternatively, you can just soak in the rays under the gentle swish of palm trees. This is a day of pure escapism, so leave your cares behind on dry land and let your inner adventurer run free.
Day 06 A DAY OF SUN-SOAKED FREEDOM
Today is free to do whatever you please. For those who simply want to chill with a book, the serene hotel pool beckons. An ice-cold caipirinha amid a chorus of birdsong here is not to be missed, no matter what time of day it is. Or, take a closer look around the quirky streets of Paraty, and get to grips with its creative character – including museums, art pop-ups and local craft shops. Want to get that adrenaline pumping? Make a beeline for Tobogã waterfall, with its slippery stone surface, for the ultimate slide into the cool waters below. You can also join a sea kayaking exhibition to nearby mangroves or sign up to a Caçacha safari, to learn how this eye-watering Brazilian spirit is made.
Day 07 EMBRACE THE CITY OF SAMBA
Get set for Rio: Round Two today, as we drive back along the jungle coastline to your city hotel, where you can check in and chill by the pool. This afternoon we’ll take a wander along Rio’s Olympic Boulevard from the 2016 Games before limbering up for a late afternoon dance class in the samba-fuelled streets of Lapa. Known as the party district of Rio, Lapa is home to the historic Old Town and your toe-tapping samba session. The drinks will be flowing freely, so embrace the carnival atmosphere and shake your tail feather. After, we’ll head to Rio Scenarium, an antique colonial townhouse that happens to be one of the best nightclubs in town. Get those hips swinging amid a cacophony of curiosities, from ornate chandeliers to bikes on the ceiling and cabinets stacked with cocktail glasses. Work your new moves by a three-storey balcony that looks down on a live Samba band, below.
Day 08 COCKTAILS ON SUGARLOAF MOUNTAIN
A chilled start is in order this morning, after last night’s samba antics. Rest up and take it easy, reflecting on your past week of blazing Brazilian adventure. In the afternoon, we’ll head to one of Rio’s most famous landmarks; Sugarloaf Mountain. An iconic motif on the city skyline, you’ve already admired it from afar but today we’re heading to the top. To beat the queues, we’ll take a short but steep hike up Urca Hill before catching the cable car to Sugarloaf’s panoramic summit. In true Rio style, there’s a bar waiting at the top for farewell drinks at sunset. Grab an ice-cool apertif and drink in the spectacular view stretching from tropical peaks to skyscrapers, hillside favelas and the shimmering Atlantic coast. Here is Rio de Janiero, in all its magnetic diversity. Travel back down to beach level for your last night in this marvellous city – anyone for a caipirinha?
Day 09 BACK TO REALITY
All good things must come to an end, and today it’s time to sign off on our escape to a land of samba and sunshine. From the highs of Christ the Redeemer to the depths of snorkelling the Atlantic, you’ve seen Wonders of the World, embraced beach life on Copacabana and cruised between Paraty’s jungle islands by private boat. You’ve moseyed through colourful Bohemian neighborhoods, learned a few slick samba moves, partied with locals and sipped sundowners on Sugarloaf Mountain. From hunting down golden beaches to mastering the (crucial) art of caipirinha mixing, this has been a non-stop jaunt of delights – with boutique hotels and like-minded travellers in the mix. After one final breakfast with your adventuring pals, it’s time to book your taxi to the airport and return to reality. Not ready to go right yet? Grab an extra slice of adventure on our trip to Chile. Bucket lists at the ready…
Our Favourite Hotels
Browse a selection of our favourite hotels, for a flavour of where you may stay on this trip.
Pousada do Ouro, Paraty
Small and charming colonial hideaway
We hear Mick Jagger is a fan of this delightful retreat, tucked away in a whitewash facade of tropical gardens – but just moments from the center of Paraty town.
Why we stay here
This is a real neighborhood gem with endlessly friendly staff, a pool fringed by tropical foliage and an enchanting garden bar.
Arena Ipanema Hotel, Rio
Hip and contemporary hotel by ipanema beach
As far as locations go, you can’t do better than one of the world’s most iconic beaches, with all the thrills of the city in easy reach.
Why we stay here
Its setting is unbeatable and best enjoyed from the glistening rooftop pool, with panoramic views of the beach and ocean beyond.
Fly into and out of Rio de Janeiro Airport (GIG).
The plan is to meet at around 5pm on Day 1 in Rio, so please book a flight that arrives before 3pm if you can.
We’re happy to book you an extra night at our Rio hotel, if you want to arrive a day early.
Please note that hot water shortages and power outages can be fairly common in Latin America (even in upgraded hotels and private homes). We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control. During the rainy season the locations visited may change due to some routes being covered by water.
Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. These changes can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control. From time to time we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh.
We take safety very seriously on Flash Pack adventures, read more here.
Joining the Flash Pack community comes with a few special guarantees...
Our trips are for like-minded people in their 30s and 40s – and 98% of them join us solo. It’s almost a given you’ll make friends.
We know the world’s best bits, so your adventure will always be immersive and authentic, and your accommodation hand-picked.
Our guides on the ground know their destinations better than anyone, so expect unprecedented access to local living and cultural secrets.
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