Journey from rowdy Rio to beautiful Salvador

SALE - Up to 25% OFF trips worldwide

SALE - Up to 25% OFF trips worldwide. Limited Availability!


Start
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Finish
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Country
Brazil
Style
Basix
Theme
Overland
Code
GDVA
Physical rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 4, Max 22

Why we love this trip

  • Experience the rhythm and colour of Rio de Janeiro

  • Explore two of the lesser known Brazil gems: Chapada Dos Veadeiros and Chapada Diamantina.

  • Finish this trip off to the rhythm of drum in Salvador

Itinerary

Welcome to Rio de Janeiro! Today there will be a group meeting day at 18:00hrs, please meet in the hotel reception. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy Rio. If you would like to book additional nights of accommodation to really explore the city, please contact your Sales agent.

Border information: If you are arriving in Rio, enter Brazil at Rio Galeão International Airport International (IATA code: GIG) Airport. In Rio we will stay in a comfortable hotel
Hotel for the night: Hotel Argentina

Hotel Argentina
Rua Cruz Lima No. 30
Flamengo
Rio de Janeiro
Brazil
Tel - +55 21 2558 7233

Activity Approximate Cost
Take a cable car up Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain) BRL 80
Discover the Colonial Gems of Rio on a city tour GBP 30
Visit the world famous statue Christ the Redeemer BRL 74

About Rio De Janeiro:
Rio de Janeiro has to be one of the most beautifully situated cities in the world. The stunning Pão de Açucar (Sugarloaf) Mountain rises up out of Guanabara Bay and the sandy beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana cut beautiful curves in the shoreline, all under the watchful gaze of the iconic Art Deco statue of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. This is a city with something for everyone - beaches, history, shopping, culture, fantastic food and amazing nightlife. For amazing views of this spectacular city, take the cable car up to the top of Pão de Açucar, ride the train to
Corcovado or jump on the tram to the historic hillside neighbourhood of Santa Teresa. If you're interested in learning more about Rio and Brazil, there are several fascinating museums in the city and you'll see some fantastic architecture by wandering around the older parts of the city.

Kick back and relax on the famous urban beaches, enjoy a beer or caipirinha at one of the many street-side cafes and then when evening comes you can party the night away - Rio has some unbelievable bars and clubs in the buzzing areas of Lapa and Ipanema. If you need a bit of quiet time to recover, take a walk in the city's wonderful botanical gardens, or escape the city for the day on an excursion to the lush forests of nearby Tijuca National Park. Rio is particularly famous for its huge annual party - the incredible Rio Carnival. The celebration of Mardi Gras (6 weeks before Easter) is a great Brazilian tradition - the whole city goes wild for a full 7 days in a whirlwind of music and colour. Samba schools compete with ever more awe-inspiring dance displays, floats and costumes, putting on marathon perfomances in the Sambadrome,
and street parties are held all over the city. 
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we will drive to the beautiful old colonial mining town of Ouro Preto. Along the way we will stop at Petropolis, the cool hill-side hideaway for local Cariocas escaping the heat of Rio. We will have 2 hours to explore the Museu Imperial, the former Imperial Palace, wander the town or visit the Palacio de Cristal, the site where the last slaves of Petropolis were released. Approximate Drive Time: 450km / 8hrs In Ouro Preto we stay at a comfortable hostel

About Ouro Preto:
Ouro Preto (meaning 'Black Gold') was founded in the 17th Century by Portuguese colonialists, and became the largest and most important city of the Brazilian Gold Rush of the 18th Century when gold was found in the surrounding area. Mines were built to extract the precious metal, and the tremendous wealth that resulted attracted Europe's intelligentsia and sparked a Baroque revival in the city - a heritage still very much evident in Ouro Preto's preserved colonial buildings and churches, art and sculptures (particularly the sculptures of Aleijadinho, one of Brazil's most famous artists). In 1789, Ouro Preto became the birthplace of the Inconfidência Mineira, a failed attempt to gain independence from Portugal. The leading figure, Tiradentes, was hanged as a threat to any future revolutionaries. Ouro Preto is a fascinating place to explore - the surviving colonial buildings are fantastically preserved and the city is refreshingly free from modern development (any new buildings must be constructed in line with the town's historical aesthetic). There are several old mines that are open for visitors, providing a glimpse of how life was for the miners all those years ago.
Included Activities
  • Boat trip
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we will enjoy a half day guided tour of Ouro Preto, well known for its colonial architecture and the first Brazilian town to be considered a UNESCO world heritage site. In the afternoon enjoy some free time to explore the town, visit the museum or some of the stunning baroque churches. There are some fantastic cafes and restaurants in Ouro Preto. Don't forget your camera today, Ouro Preto one of the most picturesque towns on our itinerary! We will stay at a local hostel.


Activity Approximate Cost
Head underground into the gold mines of Ouro Preto BRL 60
Time to explore unique colonial Ouro Preto and its architectural heritage Included in Kitty
Learn all about the failed uprising against the Portuguese in 1789 at the Museum of the Inconfidencia, or visit the Mineralogy Museum to see some of the gems mined in the area BRL 30
Visit the village of Congonhas near Ouro Preto and see the remarkable statues of the Twelve Prophets by Aleijadinho, an accomplished sculptor who worked depsite losing his hands to leprosy Free
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
We have a full day drive through the Brazilian countryside. We will find a nice spot and camp for the night near Tres Marias. Approximate driving Time - 400km / 8hrs
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we arrive in the futuristic capital of Brasilia. In the morning we will enjoy a guided tour of this fascinating city, which was designed and built to be the Brazilian Government's headquarters in 1960. The city is designed to resemble a plane, and is a UNESCO heritage site, housing some incredible, futuristic style Cathedrals and Monuments. Approximate driving time - 550km / 10hrs In Brasilia we will camp in a campsite on the edge of town

Activity Approximate Cost
Full day guided tour of Brasilia Included in Kitty

About Brasília:
Brasília is the capital city of Brazil, founded in 1960 by the President Juscelino Kubitschek in order to move the capital from Rio de Janeiro to a more geographically-central location in the country. The city is one of the major examples of the 20th Century's modern movement in architecture and urban planning - with Oscar Niemeyer and Lúcio Costa as was the chief architects, the construction of Brasília was incredible feat that turned unpopulated swampland into a purpose-built city in just 41 months between 1956 and 1960. The city's unique style and history have earned it UNESCO World Heritage status, and exploring the city really does envelop you in the feeling of being time-warped into a 1960s vision of the future!

To really appreciate the plan of the city with its aeroplane-like shape, try a trip up the television tower for a panoramic view of the city. The Metropolitan Cathedral, shaped like a crown of thorns with angel statues suspended from the ceiling, should not be missed, neither should the incredible blue stained glass of Dom Bosco Cathedral. Other fascinating buildings include the National Congress and Senate, the Juscelino Kubitschek Memorial and the incredible JK Bridge.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
After our morning tour of the city, we will drive to the chilled out town of Alto Paraiso, which will be our base for exploring the Chapada dos Veadeiros. Alto Paraiso is crossed by Parallel 14 (in the same way as Machu Picchu) and is at the centre of some fantastic stories of space ships and aliens! Drive time approx 3hrs, 150km We will camp in a well equipped camp site.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
We have two full days to explore the National Park. The Chapada dos Veadieros is one of Brazil's hidden gems, one of the oldest and most beautiful tropical ecosystems in South America and home to incredible waterfalls, rock formations, caves and grottoes. This morning we will have an included visit to the Vale da Lua or the Valley of the Moon, so called due to the rock formations giving it an appearance similar to the moon. This area is perfect for hiking, horse and bike riding and of course swimming in natural pools and soaking up the parks atmosphere. It is said that due to the high amount of quartz in the ground, that this Chapada is glows from space!

About Chapada Dos Veadeiros National Park:
Located in the State of Goiás, about 250 km from Brasília, the Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park is, according to NASA, the most luminous point seen from the Earth's orbit. This is due to the quantity of quartz crystals present in the soil, besides several other metals and minerals. The main river that flows in Veadeiros National Park is Rio Preto. Along its course, there are many spectacular waterfalls, including Rio Preto Falls (120 metres high, 80 metres at the base) and the Cariocas. The canyons are just as beautiful, with walls of up to 40 metres high and valleys of up to 300 metres. Forests are also present in the region, and are well worth exploring primarily because of the rich variety of flora, more than 25 species of orchids can be found for example. The rich fauna of the region includes species threatened with extinction such as the Pantanal deer, the Jaguar, the Maned Wolf. More common are the Rhea (Brazilian ostrich), Seriema, Tapeti, Armadillo (Tatu
Canastra), Anteater, Capybara (Capivara), Tapir (Anta), Green-Beek Toucan, Black Vulture, King Vulture. While the forests are home to this amazing wildlife it can be quite difficult to see, nonetheless this is a great place for us to explore for the amazing flora and landscape alone.
Included Activities
  • Two night Pantanal adventure
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Over the next two days we will travel overland across the central Brazilian countryside, towards the town of Lencois and the stunning Chapada Diamantina, bush camping en route. On Day 9 we will aim to travel approximately 500km / 9hrs and find a nice bush camp along the way. On Day 10 we will aim to travel 400km / 8hrs, we stay in an eco-tourism campsite in the laid back town of Lencois.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
We will spend 2 full days in Lencois, the gateway to Chapada da Diamantina National Park. A former diamond-mining town in Bahia. Lencois's friendly inhabitants, great restaurants, cobbled streets and brightly coloured buildings make it a great town to explore.

The Chapada Diamantina could be one of the most striking national parks in South America and Lencois is the perfect base for our adventures. Here we have the opportunity to hike, ride, kayak, relax by awesome waterfalls, take a dip in the rivers and explore intriguing cave systems. We will camp in Lencois for two nights.

Activity Approximate Cost
Head into the beautiful Chapada Diamantina National Park Included in Kitty


About Chapada Da Diamantina National Park:
In the hinterland of Salvador, just outside of the town of Lençóis, lies the Chapada Diamantina, or Diamond Highlands. Valleys of lush green dotted with bright tropical flowers surround a mountain range of twisted red-rock formations reminiscent of the American Southwest. Numerous small rivers carve their way through the highlands, splashing over waterfalls and natural slides. There are also numerous caves, some many kilometers long. Many are quite popular, some just being discovered, some restricted yet to geologists who are trying to figure out just how they and the rock formations they contain were formed.


The gateway community of Lençóis is an old colonial town of stone streets and little churches, with little signs of the modern world. The attractions here are entirely natural. We have the chance to walk the highlands, explore caves, mountain bike old miners' tracks, and swim in natural pools and waterfalls. This
is the Brazil that so many travellers miss. It is the other Brazil, away from the crowds of Rio and from the beaches or famous sites. This is the sort of place that you can visit so easily on an overland trip but that is so often inaccessible to the normal tourist or traveller. Here you will have the opportunity to trek to many of the locations within the park, depending on your fitness and sense of adventure but either way is a wonderful place to spend a few days.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
We head to the coast today, to the beautiful beach town of Itacare, with it's stunning Atlantic rainforest, laid back eco-friendly cafes and bars, and the opportunity to surf, relax and explore. Approximate Driving Time - 515km / 9hrs Tonight we will camp in a Campsite with facilities

About Itacare:
Itacare is a small eco-friendly town just south of Salvador, located in the cocoa region of Bahia state. White sandy beaches, great food, friendly locals, wild nature and fantastic surf make this town a popular place to spend a day or two. Itacare offers 20 miles of picture perfect beach, warm oceans, lots of cool bars and cafes.
Included Activities
  • Visit Argentinian side of Iguazu Falls (entrance fee included)
  • Visit Brazilian side of Iguazu Falls (entrance fee included)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we have a free day to explore the area, enjoy the beach, take part in some of the many adventure activities available here, or visit the stunning Peninsula de Marau, stopping off at Praia Taipus de Fora and Lagoa Azul. We will camp this evening at a campsite with facilities.

Activity Approximate Cost
Take part in a range of adventure activities from horses riding, rafting, canyoning, mountain biking, kayaking and even off road adventures USD 50-100
Head to the southern beaches for some surfing or chill out on the beach and relax Free

Take a day trip to explore the Peninsula de Marau, with it's gorgeous beaches, Camambu bay's nature reserve and relaxed viallges. USD 75

Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today we drive to the beautiful town of Salvador da Bahia. Salvador is a vibrant and exciting place to visit, with its bright colonial architecture, tasty street food scene, great music and impressive Capoeira, there's plenty to keep us busy for 2 days. We stay just by the old centre of Pelourinho in a lovely hotel. Approximate driving time - 250km / 7hrs


Activity Approximate Cost
Watch a candomblé ceremony in Salvador USD 40

About Salvador Da Bahia:
Situated on a peninsular jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean, Salvador da Bahia was the capital of Brazil when it was first colonised, but now it can only claim to be the capital of the state of Bahia. Bahia is strongly influenced by its links with Africa, both in its language, religion, food, dance and music, and this certainly dominates the atmosphere in Salvador. If time allows we will take in a night at the Bale Folclorico da Bahia or the Oludum drummers for a taste of local traditions.

Apart from the historic interest of the town, there are some excellent beaches to visit nearby, but you should definitely try to get to a 'Candomble' evening while you are here. Candomble is a popular religious cult in the region, and the ceremonies offer a fascinating insight into the culture of this area. Salvador is also well known for its spectacular Carnival and other festivities, but the nightlife is good here at any time of the year.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Free time to explore the energetic and vibrant city of Salvador, known around the world for its Carnaval festivities. Salvador is home to over 300 churches, the historic centre is recognised by UNESCO and full of interesting architecture, brightly coloured buildings and cobblestone streets. It's an excellent place to witness the African culture in music and dance and enjoy some delicious street food.


Activity Approximate Cost
Visit the Forte Santo Antonioa da Barra, Brazil's oldest lighthouse, for panoramic views of the city. USD 10
Visit a Capoeira school, to watch the Brazilian martial art, combining elements of dance, acrobatics and music. Free
Included Activities
  • Jesuit Mission ruins and museum, San Ignacio de Mini
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today is the final day for passengers finishing their trip in Salvador. Please note there is no accommodation included on the trip tonight - please contact your Sales agent if you would like to book an extra night of accommodation or to continue the journey north. Border information: If you are leaving in Salvador, exit Brazil at Deputado Luís Eduardo Magalhães International Airport (IATA: SSA)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.

Meals

No meals are included on this tour

Transport

Overland expedition vehicle, 4x4, Public bus, Boat, Canoe

Accommodation

Camping ( 13 nights ), hotel /hostel / lodge / cabin ( 5 nights )

Included activities

  • Boat trip
  • Two night Pantanal adventure
  • Visit Argentinian side of Iguazu Falls (entrance fee included)
  • Visit Brazilian side of Iguazu Falls (entrance fee included)
  • Jesuit Mission ruins and museum, San Ignacio de Mini

Dates & availability

Trip search is unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Rio to Salvador trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

Jump to a departure month
Travel lightly with Intrepid. We’ve offset the main sources of carbon emissions from this trip on your behalf, including transport, accommodation & waste. Read more

Important notes

1. This trip is run by our experienced overland partner Dragoman.
2. Please note that this trip requires minimum numbers to depart, and may be cancelled up until 56 days prior to departure. The places showing on the dates and availability page are an indication only so please contact Intrepid to check if your preferred date will depart before making any final arrangements, such as booking non-changeable flights.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.