7 days from £1710pp plus international flights.
This holiday takes you to the south coast of Brazil, where you travel by road, rail and sea, allowing you to experience the scenery, culture and heritage of the region. You have a chance to enjoy laidback days on the beach, take a train ride through the Atlantic forest and explore coastal towns. It's the perfect mix of activity and relaxation.
You start in Curitiba, a buzzing city combining striking architecture, large parks and bold urban planning. Your hotel is a good example of the stylish design that characterises the city. From here you go back in time as you board the Serra Verde Express which travels along a track that dates back to 1885, and passes through a large area of Atlantic rainforest. Sit back and enjoy the ride! Morretes, your destination, is a charming colonial town and you explore with a guide who also takes you to the coast for views of Antonina Bay.
The delightfully named Ilha do Mel, Honey Island, is your next stop, Blissfully free of cars and motorbikes this picture postcard island is a gorgeous place to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Your pousada faces a pretty beach and is owned by a professional chef. Explore on foot, by bike or boat, laze on a beach, try out your surfing skills and dine on fresh seafood.
That's pretty hard to top, but Praia do Rosa succeeds. The curved stretch of sand extends for 3kms and is flanked by low sand dunes and forest, and is often used as a back drop for photo shoots. There's time to top up your tan, go surfing, swim the lagoon, go hiking and horse riding, or you can enjoy some relaxed downtime by the hotel's infinity pool.
This holiday makes a great add-on to a longer Brazil trip and can be a holiday in its own right. It starts in Curtiiba and ends in Florianopolis, both with airports with good connections to other parts of Brazil, making it easy to link with another holiday itinerary.
You arrive at the airport in Curitiba, where you are met by a representative of our partner company in Brazil and drive to Nomaa Hotel. This is a stylish, modern hotel with an attractive terrace where you can unwind after your flight, and a spa where you can enjoy therapeutic treatments.
This morning you are transferred to the train station for the journey to Morretes aboard the Serra Verde Express. This travels 110kms along one of the oldest railways in Brazil, constructed in 1885, through lush Atlantic rainforest, a scenic journey that takes about 3 hours. You arrive around lunchtime and are invited to try the local speciality, Barreado, a meat stew slow cooked in a clay pot, at a nearby restaurant. This is followed by a guided walking tour of the compact town centre with its pretty main street the Rua das Flores, and river. You are then driven to Antonina, a journey of about 30 minutes, to enjoy views of the bay. Later you return to Morretes and your guest house Casa da Estacao. Breakfast, lunch
You are on the move again, this time to Pontal do Sol on the coast. From here you board a boat for the half hour crossing to Ilha do Mel. Arriving on this lovely island feels like stepping back in time, with no motor vehicles permitted and only sporadic mobile coverage. You stay at Pousada Casa da Ilha do Mel, a small lodge owned and run by a professional chef, overlooking Parai do Fora, a popular beach. This is your own island paradise! Breakfast
After breakfast at the Pousada, your thoughts run to how you want to spend the day. The beach is on your doorstep if you want to soak up some sun and ocean views, and you can walk to the nearby lighthouse for some fine views. A little further afield but accessible on foot or by bike, the Fortaleza Nossa Senhora dos Prazeres is an impressive sight commanding the approach to the island, complete with cannons that date back to the late 18th and 19th centuries. Encantada grotto is another popular attraction, best reached by boat or via a walking trail. There are opportunities for swimming and surfing among the 24kms of beaches, and plenty of cafes and restaurants for refreshments. Breakfast
It's time to leave Ilha do Mel, taking the boat back to the mainland and returning to Curitiba from where you catch a plane to Florianopolis, a flight of about 3 hours. A driver is waiting to meet you and take you to Praia do Rosa. The drive takes less than 2 hours and your destination is Quinta do Bucanero, set just back from the beach. Relax on the sundeck, admire the views and settle in. There's an inviting infinity pool, a sauna and indoor and outdoor jacuzzis. If you don't want to venture far for dinner tonight you can eat at the hotel, which specialises in fish and seafood. Breakfast
With nothing planned you are free to choose how you spend the day. The hotel provides beach loungers and towels if you fancy spending a day on Praia do Rosa. This is a large, crescent-shaped sandy beach, perfect for sunbathing, and is also a renowned surfing spot. The lagoon between the north and south beaches is good for swimming. There are walking trails behind the beach if you want to stretch your legs, and a choice of places to eat. All in all, this a great place to spend a day, unwinding at the end of your holiday. Breakfast
After breakfast at the hotel you are collected for the drive to the airport in Florianopolis where the holiday concludes. Breakfast
Guide price from (pp sharing): £1710 (ex. international flights)
Accommodation on a twin share basis, private transfers, flight from Curitiba to Florianopolis, meals shown as included, the Serra Verde Express from Curitiba to Morretes, services of a guide in Morretes, return public boat transfers from Pontal do Sol to Ilha do Mel.
International flights, departure taxes, travel insurance, visas, meals not shown as included, drinks, optional excursions and activities, tips, personal spending.
Getting there: This holiday begins in Curitiba and concludes in Florianapolis from where you can connect to other regions of Brazil to continue your holiday, or fly back to Rio or Sao Paulo and thence back to the UK. We recommend international flights into either Sao Paulo or Rio de Janerio. Return flights from the UK cost from around £750 per person, depending on availability and season. We can book the international and domestic flights for you.
Departure dates: This is a private tailor made holiday that operates all year. The train does not always run a daily service so we will plan the start day to fit with your itinerary, subject to availability
Linked to the mainland by 3 bridges, Santa Catarina is the historic centre of Florianopolis. It has some famous beaches and is a well-known surfing destination.
A small guesthouse within walking distance of town and set in pretty gardens with a pool.
Onwer run pousada offering warm hospitality and tasty homemade food in a beachfront setting.
A modern boutique hotel with a choice of rooms and a well regarded restaurant in the centre of Curitiba.
Beautifully sited above Praia de Rosa, this small and stylish hotel is a real gem, with its cosy accommodation and inviting infinity pool
5/5 from 52 reviews
Find the best time to visit Brazil
Time: GMT -3 hours
Flight time: Most flights go to Sao Paulo but some airlines have direct flights to Rio de Janeiro, and to North-eastern Brazil. British Airways and TAM have direct flights from London and many European carriers also offer flights to Brazil.
Language: Portuguese is the official language. Spanish and English are understood quite widely.
Visas: Not required for British nationals.
Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations, except yellow fever if you are coming from an infected area. Malaria prophylactics are recommended in the rainforest.