There is no doubt that Brazil has been granted much more than its share of sultry beauty and incomparable music and surely, after the first glimpse and musical tune heard, you will undoubtedly agree!
Our first stop will be Salvador da Bahia, a town of revelry, steeped in a vibrant African culture and an endemic contagious joy!
During this leg, we will explore sites and activities that are most representative of the African influence, the country's customs, sounds and sights that will convey pride and a sense of identity uniquely Brazilian!
The Pelourinho neighborhood, the heart and soul of the city of Salvador, was called such after the pillory which stood in the main square, in front of the central slave market which in a typically Brazilian transformation it is turned into a venue for music shows, structured or impromptu. The beat of percussion bands and other musical attractions fill the streets and squares delight everyone present!
We will visit churches, museums and other venues representing Brazil's colonial past. We will be guests at a traditional Candomblé terreiro a place of worship of the ancestral spirits or Orixá's (or deities) where the faithful maintain the traditional religious values and social structure of African daily life
A Capoeira Angolan workshop will be offered to those interested in the history and philosophy of this ancient martial art with an opportunity to try the instruments and learn some of the basic movements.
Dia da Consciência Negra, (Black Consciousness Day) commemorating the death of the legendary leader Zumbi, the last leader of a quilombo, a runaway slave community, will be observed during our stay in Salvador. The commemorations for this day will feature soundstages throughout the historical center of Salvador with performances by leading musicians and artists.
The town of Cachoeira is a jewel of the Bahian hinterland nestled in the deep valley of the Paraguaçu River. A UNESCO World Heritage site and the town's architectural wealth is also home to a thriving cultural community deeply grounded in African cultural. The religious traditions are epitomized by the Sisterhood of the Boa Morte, a sorority which traces its origins back to the time of slavery
Salvador explorations continue with colorful folkloric shows, a percussion workshop and a jam session at Solar do Unhão, a former plantation home built in the 18th century. It is a magical and spiritual venue on the shores of the immense All Saints Bay. We will enjoy artists from all over the world playing jazz with a Bahian accent while improvising alongside the core JAM band, providing a mix of samba, frevo, salsa, blues, latin jazz and swing!
The second part of this amazing journey will be Rio de Janeiro, the Cidade Maravilhosa! (Marvelous City)!
Rio needs no introductions, and soaking in the infectious sounds of the Brazilian beat and the warmth of its people, we will all become honorary cariocas!
Enjoy breathtaking vistas from Corcovado Mountain and Sugar Loaf where we will enjoy cocktails at sunset.
A visit to Petropolis and the former emperor's palace will reveal the influence the Portuguese had and still command in this vast land.
We will stroll through Rio's downtown area where most of its business is held but also where the old colonial Rio still exists alongside its modern counterpart.
A visit to a local "comunidade", communities of disenfranchised previously referred to as favelas will further reinforce the amazing resiliency of their residents, who against all odds, have managed to reverse the trend of violence and stigma, thus resulting in neighborhoods now filled with educational centers providing for the youth and hope for a better future for future generations. As Rio gets ready for its Carnival we will have the unique opportunity to visit one of the main samba schools to see how its members, mostly volunteer based, design and create the exotic floats and costumes that will be paraded during the event. The music written to complement their chosen theme will further demonstrate how dedicated and committed the Brazilians are to this annual magnificent ritual.
When in Rio one cannot be a passive spectator-samba, bossa nova, choro or forro' will delight us with their infectious rhythms and sounds as every evening we will explore Rio's bustling night life with the cariocas as our gracious hosts!
*VERY IMPORTANT: When booking, please advise of any allergies or any other dietary restriction due to health or religious reasons so that we may make the appropriate substitutions to menus. No other substitutions allowed for any other reason at the time of the meals.
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