As a result of the 2014 World Cup being held in Brazil, we've found ourselves bewitched by this South American gem. With typical temperatures of around 30⁰C and home to some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes there isn’t much to dislike. Although we may not be able to take you to Brazil this summer, let us bring Brazil to you with our inspired courses and show you why we've fallen in love with the country.
Wonders of the world
Brazil is the largest country in both South America and the Latin region and is the world’s fifth largest country by geographical area and by population. Home to 60% of the Amazon rainforest as well as 4,000 miles of the Amazon River (the second longest in the world), Brazil is a paradise ready to be explored. This paradise is also the homeland of the Igazu falls – one of the great natural wonders of the world, dividing the upper and lower parts of the Igazu River between Argentina and Brazil.
Life’s a beach
With more beaches than you can shake your flip flops at, Brazil has 8,000km of coastline for sun-seekers to choose from. Golden sand meets endless turquoise sea in the picture perfect spots, under palm trees in the tropics. The country’s renowned beaches include Ipanema and Copacabana - famous for its New Year’s Eve party, as well as being the chosen location for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. As the world’s most famous footballers arrive, who knows who you might see soaking up the sun on the sands if you are planning a visit over the next month.
It’s more than a game
Football is far more than a game in Brazil – it is a way of life. Brazil is the most successful world cup team in the world, winning five times in total. The birthplace of the likes of Pele, arguably the most famous footballer in the world and Rondaldinho, football is a very serious matter for many Brazilians. This year, even banks will shut during the team’s games so workers can go home and support.
Every girl has enviously watched the Victoria Secret show, silently sobbing into a tub of Ben and Jerry’s as the six foot goddesses stride up and down the catwalk. Very few countries have more top models than Brazil, the birthplace of the stunningly beautiful Giselle Bundchen, Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio (sigh).
Christ the Redeemer
One of Brazil’s hottest tourist spots, no trip is complete without a selfie by the famous statue of Christ overlooking Rio de Janeiro. Located on the peak of the 700m Corcovado Mountain, this is another one to celebrity spot at this summer.
Did you know that Brazil has been the world’s largest producer of coffee for the last 150 years? If you are a big coffee drinker, the chances are you will have already sampled Brazilian beans, with around a third of the world’s coffee coming from Brazil.
Now you know just why we love Brazil, have a look at the courses this amazing country has inspired us to take...
Portuguese is the official language of Brazil, spoken by more than 90% of the population. If you are inspired by the beautiful backdrops as you watch the World Cup, why not start learning the language now and book your flights for next summer?
Biggest party on earth
Forget Christmas, Carnival is the biggest festivity when you live in Brazil, the Rio carnival being described as ‘the biggest party on earth’. An annual festival held during the Friday to the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, during which huge public parades take place throughout Brazil. If you fancy bringing some of this atmosphere back home, why not take inspiration and start designing your own carnival costumes for a party nearer you?
Recognised around the world as a symbol of Brazil and the Brazilian carnival, the Samba is the national dance, driven by the rhythm of the music. Whether you are dancing in Rio or Notting Hill, Samba is also a great way to get in shape, giving a full body work out (and hopefully a Victoria Secret bikini body to prove it). If you fancy trying it for yourself, take a look at our samba courses and get dancing.
Slightly less terrifying than it sounds, capoeira is a Brazilian sport that combines elements of martial arts, dance, music and acrobats with a Brazil’s culture and history. If you are already involved in martial arts and fancy trying something new, or want to learn more about Brazil in this unique sport, a capoeira course could be the perfect addition to your summer.
Jane McGuire received her BA (English) from the University of Loughborough. A yoga enthusiast with a sweet tooth, in her spare time you will probably find Jane in the gym or online shopping.