Vanderlei Almeida, AFP/Getty Images
December 21, 2009
Distance from Baltimore: 4,030 miles, about a 12½ -hour flight (with stop)
Why it's hot: It's the site of the 2016 Summer Olympics, when it will be the first South American city to host the event. Iguazu Falls, at 269 feet, is taller than and twice as wide as Niagara Falls. Stop by Sao Paulo, Brazils largest city, to visit cultural treasures including the Metropolitan Se Cathedral, Ibirapuera Park and the São Paulo Museum of Art. Experience the native wildlife in Brazils varied ecosystems in the Pantanal, Brazils tropical wetlands. Hike, fish, or tour the area on boat or horseback. Take a glimpse into the countrys colonial past at Manaus, known as the gateway to the Amazon River. Explore the historical architecture as you soak in the citys charm before heading over to Ponta Negra Beach, an excellent beach for relaxing in the sun, frolicking in the water, or both.
Don't miss: Rio de Janeiro. Rio is well known for its gorgeous beaches. With choices from Copacabana to Ipanema, you can't go wrong. Dont forget to venture just outside the city to Christ the Redeemer, the 120-foot tall statue situated atop the Corcovado Mountain. The Sugar Loaf Mountain is also worth your time, reaching nearly 1,300 feet in the sky, the mountain provides an ideal vantage point to view the beautiful Guanabara Bay.
Information: To plan your trip to Brazil, visit http://www.visitbrasil.com.