Brazil is one of the world’s most beautiful countries, filled with colourful carnivals, upbeat samba rhythms and long sandy beaches. Brazil is not only famous for its legendary football calibre but also its unique culture, incredible landscapes and numerous world heritage sites. This makes Brazil one of the best opinions to consider when choosing a wellness travel destination. After analysing numerous online sources, the following cities were identified to be the top 7 cities to visit in Brazil for wellness purposes. Let’s check them out!
7. Recife in Pernambuco
Bordering the beach in northeast Brazil is a lively and fun city called Recife! This city has a particular cultural scene and is recommended for those who enjoy the nightlife. There are a plethora of posh pubs, clubs and restaurants that you can visit here to get a taste of Brazil’s flavour.
Recife’s refreshing atmosphere also makes it a desirable destination for outdoor adventures. You can unwind by the beach and admire Brazil’s beauty or take on one of Recife’s five-star hiking trails. You can even go shopping for traditional Brazilian wellness products at one of the street markets in Recife.
If you are looking for a more indoor wellness experience, the exquisite spas available in Recife will tickle your fancy. Villa Bem Estar is one of the most popular spas in Recife so go check it out after your outdoor adventures. There are also numerous wellness centres available which provide various indoor wellness activities such as meditation and massages.
6. Manus in Amazonas
Behold, the Meeting of Waters. A place where the black waters of Rio Negro meet the sandy waters of the Amazon to form the Solimões River. If this is something you want to experience, then you have to get your passport and make your way down to Manus.
The first thing that you will want to do when you reach Manus is to explore a portion of the vast Amazon rainforest. There are so many wellness activities that you can do there. You can swim with pink river dolphins, take a walk in the jungle; or even learn about medicinal plants like Brazilian Ginseng which is good for your immune system.
When you return to the city, why not get a spa treatment or learn an exotic meditation course to rest your mind and body? That would be the perfect time to kick back and enjoy Amazonian cuisine; the piranha soup is a popular recommendation.
5. Brasília in Distrito Federal
Going to Brazil without visiting Brasilia is like going to the UK without visiting London. Brasilia is not only noteworthy for being the capital of Brazil but also for its modern architecture. In 1987, UNESCO named Brasilia a world heritage site, making it one of only 8 Brazilian cities with a world heritage city status.
There are many wellness activities that you can do when visiting Brasilia, spa treatments being the most popular. There are many five-star destinations that you can choose from when you are looking to have a luxurious and exotic spa treatment. Nuwa Spa is one of the highly recommended ones.
Other exciting wellness activities you should try while in Brasilia include qigong meditation, exotic massages, and Reiki.
4. Salvador in Bahia
Popularly known as Brazil’s first capital, Salvador is another highly recommended city that you must visit when you are in the country. Salvador is one of the oldest Brazilian cities and is highly rich in culture and politics. It encompasses the country’s biggest Afro-Brazilian community.
If you are a music lover then make sure you visit Pelourinho, Salvador’s tourism centre. Pelourinho is a world heritage site filled with African-Brazilian souvenir stores, historic landmarks, as well as street dancers and musicians. If you are staying nearby, why not take a walk around the centre to explore Salvador’s rich culture while sipping on a glass of Caipirinha?
Some examples of the outdoor wellness activities that you can do in Salvador include fishing, trekking and excursions. Most of these activities can be done at the Bahía de Todos Los Santos, another highly recommended area in Salvador. If you prefer indoor activities, you can book one of the city’s many high-quality resorts, spas and lodges.
3. Florianópolis in Santa Catarina
In the Southeastern region of Brazil lies the breathtaking city of Florianópolis (or Floripa as the locals call it). This city is filled with so much beauty that some international tourists have named it the most beautiful city in Brazil.
Floripa is a peninsula with over 42 beaches. This leaves you with many options to choose from for wellness activities and excursions. You can take a walk around one of the beaches, surf away from crowds or simply relax while sipping a couple of beers and caipirinhas under the Brazilian sky. If you would like to challenge yourself, why not go on a hiking trip?
All the popular indoor wellness leisure activities are also available in Floripa. From spas and resorts to meditation facilities, many excellent wellness centres await you with tons of services. Floripa Surf & Yoga House is an example of a quality wellness centre that offers hybrid packages and local activities such as kitesurfing, stand-up paddle (SUP), and windsurfing.
And do not worry, you do not need to be a pro to do these activities, an instructor will be provided!
2. São Paulo
Among Brazil’s top three must-visit locations is São Paulo, the country’s vibrant financial centre. São Paulo is the most populated city in Brazil, accommodating over 20 million people. The city is rich in architecture and has many cultural institutions.
Although the city is highly populated, it is still a highly recommended getaway destination for urban travellers. If you are a party animal then you will come alive at São Paulo’s nightclubs and botecos (Brazilian local bars that provide live music). If you are an outgoing person who loves to meet people, you will love São Paulo’s street parties.
There are also facilities available in São Paulo which offer a much quieter and more intimate wellness experience. You can book into any of the many 5-star spas and resorts around and get a classical massage, sports massage or a face re-energisation. You can even do crystal healing, a multi-sectoral wellness technique that uses aromatherapy, music therapy, and chromotherapy to cleanse the 7 chakras.
1. Rio de Janeiro
Out of all the online sources that were analysed as research for this article, Rio de Janeiro was the only city that was listed as number 1 in all the sources. Rio’s high ranking in the list of must-visit Brazilian cities could be attributed to its immense beauty. With many landmarks such as Copacabana beach, Sugarloaf Mountain, and the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue; it comes as no surprise that many consider Rio de Janeiro one of the most beautiful places on earth.
There are many wellness activities that you can do when visiting Rio. Spa treatments, massages and yoga are the three most common wellness activities throughout Brazil and this is the case in Rio as well. There are also some beautiful hiking trails that you can surmount if you are looking for a slightly more challenging wellness activity. Why not take a cooking class after your hike to have a taste of the amazing food the city has to offer? If you go at the right time of the year, you can even join the Carnival in Rio de Janeiro – the world’s biggest carnival!
So, there you have it, the top 7 cities to visit in Brazil for wellness activities. Number 7 is Recife: Brazil’s fun and lively city recommended for those who enjoy the nightlife. At number 6 is Manus: a gateway to the wonders of the Amazon rainforest. Number 5 is Brasilia: Brazil’s world heritage capital city renowned for its modern infrastructure and exotic spa treatments.
At number 4 is Salvador: one of Brazil’s oldest cities and home to the country’s biggest Afro-Brazilian community. Number 3 is Florianopolis, the Brazilian peninsula with over 42 beaches for you to choose from. Number 2 is Sao Paulo, the most populated city in Brazil and a highly recommended getaway destination for urban travellers. And number 1 is the one and only Rio de Janeiro, home to Copacabana beach, Sugarloaf Mountain, and the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue.
This is a highly contested list so take your time and choose the city that is best for you. If you have the time and means, you can even go on a mini tour of Brazil by visiting all the cities. Either way, you are guaranteed to have a great time no matter which city you decide to visit. Have a wonderful time!