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Anyone ever been to Brazil or Argentina?

  1. Feb 15, 2009 #1
    I'm leaving on Thurs to go to Brazil for Carnival and then going to Argentina (Buenos Aires and wine country) after that. Anyone got any travel tips like places to eat, stay, or bad areas?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 15, 2009 #2

    Ivan Seeking

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    How exciting! I've always wanted to see that. Have a great time!!! Unfortunately the extent of my travels in SA is limited to Peru.
  4. Feb 15, 2009 #3
    Rio is nice. Make sure to drink some coconut milk on the beach. The people there are very poor though, so if you dress nice you will stick out and say 'rob me'. Or, 'kidnap me'.

    Enjoy all the boobies.
  5. Feb 15, 2009 #4

    Ivan Seeking

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    When I was in Peru, the hotel used all false information on the registry so as not to alert kidnappers. Each morning we were escorted from the hotel to the car by an armed guard, and we always took a different route to the factory. When you are there representing a large US company, the crooks figure you are good for ransom.
  6. Feb 15, 2009 #5
    We are going to stay away from the big cities in Brazil like Rio or Sao Paulo. We are going to Florianopolis since it is supposed to be much safer and was voted the best city in Brazil to live.
  7. Feb 15, 2009 #6
    I went to Rio de Janeiro the last week in January in 1976 on business. It was hot. I estimate the temperature was about 100 F. The bands were already practicing in the streets for Carnaval. The girls were the sexiest I've seen anywhere in the world. My interpreter warned me to stay in Copacabana, Ipanima and El Centro and not go anywhere else.
  8. Feb 15, 2009 #7
    Lol, my grandparents live in Rio. Trust me, you do not want to stray far. We drove through slums after slums after slums. I woke up one night to the sound of fireworks. No wait, that was gunfire. The drug dealers were shooting assault weapons at the police. Some shells landed in the neighboors yard. My grandparents live on the top of the hill. The gunfire was down the hill a ways. As we drove down, one of the appartments with a metal door to the garage area was full of bullet holes. They live about 40 mins away from Copacabana.
  9. Feb 16, 2009 #8


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    Driving there is an adventure. The traffic lane lines are apparently only advisory. It's not uncommon to see 5 cars abreast on a 3 lane street waiting at a stop light. Drive assertively, like you know where you are going, even if you make a mistake, don't hesitate. That will likely get you hit.

    Kids on the streets will work in packs as pick-pockets. I heard stories that some will take razors and slit your back pocket to get at your wallet.

    I walked from Corcovado to Copacabana during the daylight hours. And it seemed safe enough, though I walked briskly, and stopped briefly to shop, and said very little. A moving target as it were.

    Driving away from Rio down along the southern coast the beach on weekdays anyway things seemed safer, more because there was less crowd. But again it was daylight.

    Be assertive. Act decisively. Be polite. Walk briskly. Dress simply. Carry only what you can lose, and inside pockets at that. Probably the best recipe for staying safe.
  10. Feb 17, 2009 #9
    We had a great time in Argentina (San Carlos de Bariloche and Buenos Aires). I'd easily go back given the opportunity.

    Of course, I didn't dress like a tourist... I wore a nice top and a skirt, basic black shoes, and kept my camera in a normal-looking backpack, kept moving, and probably looked more like a local student. There were only a few occasions when I was known to be a tourist (looking for directions in my poor Spanish)... and I knew enough to keep these occasions to when I was not in the "sketchy" part of Buenos Aires (though dang it... I do still regret those "missed opportunities" of taking the pictures of a few people in those regions... especially a homeless guy who had a doll's head on a stake and a pinwheel stuck in the front of his shopping cart; there's something especially poignant about the mental state of many of the uncared-for poor... in every country).
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