Brazil and Argentina - Awesome Experiences

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Brazil, Argentina, Iguazu, Pantanal and Rio


These itineraries are all based around an extended trip I took to South America, starting in Buenos Aires. It is surprisingly warm to British travellers, given the Falklands War. After a series of despotic dictators who "disappeared" many of their opponents, letting bygones be bygones is something of Argentine speciality. Like most cities, parts of it can feel unsafe for solo travellers, but most of it is fine, especially by day. One of the most colourful parts is La Boca which features tango and restaurants by day, but red lights by night. The latter may or may not give you a different kind of awesome experience, but we do not recommend it. AX also features a tango class, so when you go to a tango club you don't have to just watch, you can take part and learn. While Uruguay may covet Buenos Aires' red carnation as the world's tango capital, its spiritual home, and dancefloor, will always be Argentina. The best places to eat are near theatre-land and by the riverside, where steak and Malbec wine can be sampled in abundance.

Iguazu is a genuine wonder of the world. Featured in the film The Mission, it is best seen from the Argentinean side (though Brazilians fervently disagree!) and ideally early in the day. We also feature a speedboat ride underneath it which is great but you have to be prepared to receive the full experience, which means getting wet! Still, "I'm just washing the Iguazu falls out of my hair" is undoubtedly one of the greatest postcard-openers of all time.

The Pantanal is an amazing wetland roughly the size of France. There are two inhabitants you really want to see here, apart from the plentiful caimans: jaguars, the worlds biggest cat, who will happily eat you; and giant otters who would eat you if they could, but will give you a nasty nip! I saw neither, but subsequently found out where they are, so with a teeny bit of luck we'll introduce you at a suitable distance.

Rio is great. Amazing beaches. Samba and probably the world's definitive carnival. Our private guides and drivers ensured that I was safe and prevented any straying into the more "iffy" parts of the city. You can even visit the carnival on some of our experiences and also the Winners Parade.

Standing on Sugarloaf Mountain presented an incredible view and after driving in a 4X4 around the forest, I felt as though I'd participated in the city's life, rather than as a simple tourist.  As in Buenos Aires, we also teach you to Samba and take you to a Samba show to try it. One day we hope to explore the favelas on our experiences too, but currently the UK and Brazillian governments say it is too dangerous because of the local gangs.   Regardless, Rio is amazing place to visit - but much better and safer done with experienced guides and a great tour operator....