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Travel in Latin America

Brazil Travel Tips: Visiting Recife and Olinda
By:Hortense Soulier

Beautiful but economically poor, the northern part of Brazil is a lesser known destination which is often kept off the tourist map. However, it is home to some historical and cultural treasures, as well as to some of the country most stunning beaches. Recife and Olinda are without as doubt fascinating destinations that deserve a stop.

One of the favorite destinations among travelers to Brazil, Recife is most famous for its proximity to gorgeous and deserted white sand beaches. Travelers looking for quiet, sea, sun, and breathtaking scenery will revel in the opportunity to dip their toes in the warm waters of the Recife region. The most attractive beaches, Gaibu, Itapuama, and Porto de Galinhas, are located about 30 kilometers from Recife.

Thanks to attention shifting towards promoting the area as a tourist destination, the city is dotted with a great airport, the most modern in Brazil. Located about 12 kilometers from the city center, the Gilberto Freyre international airport is filled with coffee shops, bookstores, and elegant souvenir and clothes shops. You can also reach Recife with long distance buses, with the terminal (rodoviaria) found about 12 kilometers away at Sao Lourenço da Mata. Buses operate daily to Salvador de Bahia (12 hrs), Rio de Janeiro (44 hrs), Sao Paulo (50 hrs), Foz de Iguassu (55 hrs), Brasilia (36hrs), and many other cities.

Only a few minutes ride away from Recife is the small town of Olinda, one of Brazil's colonial gems, which is definitely worth a visit on your Brazil vacation. Former capital of Brazil founded in 1537 and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1982, this charming town was fully restored thanks to a program partly financed by the government of the Netherlands. The city center forms a compact network of narrow, cobbled streets steeped in history, with countless magnificent buildings from the 16th and 17th century.

A day trip to Olinda can easily be arranged, but if you have more time and are willing to splurge, why not spend the night in one of the stuning converted mansions (pousadas) of the historic center. If not, you can return to spend the night in Recife. The best part of town to stay in Recife is the Boa Viagem, the city's main tourist district where most attractions are concentrated. The district is located right next to the beach where you can enjoy beautiful sunsets as you sip on a caipirinha. If you want to stay up till dawn, the city center, easily accessible and beautifully restored, is filled with lively bars and restaurants opened until the early hours of the morning.

This guide to visiting Recife and Olinda was written by a Brazil travel expert at Brazil For Less available to help you customize your exciting Brazil tours http://www.brazilforless.com/packages/tours.php.

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