There are some truly sensational countries littered across South America, but few are quite as intriguing and polarizing as Brazil. The locals themselves will probably tell you as much, with some being incredibly patriotic and others looking for a move away to pastures new.
Due to its overwhelming popularity, there's a good chance that some of these entries may not serve as universal viewpoints, but even with that being the case, we feel as if some of our thoughts are echoed amongst a large portion of travelers (both the good and the bad).
With that in mind, let's dive straight into the fifth biggest nation in the world.
10 SCARE US - The Violence
Just three short years ago in 2016, Brazil had a record number of 61,819 murders across the entirety of the country, which averages out to around 168 murders every single day. While these figures can be viewed as being fairly regular in that part of the country, in the minds of people from places with much lower crime rates, that can be intimidating.
Travelers of all shapes and sizes want to feel like they belong in a country whenever they decide to visit it, and that vibe just isn’t felt in Brazil whatsoever. It’s a shame, too.
9 WANT TO GO - Amazing Beaches
The famous song dictates that you must head on down to the Copacabana, and rightfully so.
This region exemplifies why Brazilian beaches are some of the best around the world, from the white sand to the crystal blue sea. With the kind of architectural backdrops that would be enough to even make the best of us cry, these beaches will take you to a place of relaxation that you’ve never felt before.
Europe and North America has a lot of things, but they almost certainly don’t have beaches this magical.
8 SCARE US - Soccer Fans
As the five-time champions of the famous FIFA World Cup, it goes without saying that Brazil is the greatest nation to ever play the game of soccer. You could make an argument for Argentina, Germany, England, and Italy, but in our mind, Brazil takes the crown.
One of the best parts of that culture isn’t just their success on the pitch, though: it’s the fans. They come out in their thousands regardless of whether or not they’re expected to pick up the win and that, in itself, is why they’re known for having such overwhelming levels of success on their home turf.
7 WANT TO GO - Christ the Redeemer
When construction began on this magnificent statue back in 1922, few could’ve anticipated just how iconic it would turn out to be. This Art Dec piece, in many ways, is known for being the symbol of Brazil (and certainly of Rio de Janeiro).
It stands at an incredible 38 meters high and is probably one of the most recognizable tourist destinations on the face of the planet.
Even if you aren’t religious you should go and check this out, because it is well and truly mind-boggling – and that’s just the size we’re talking about here.
6 SCARE US - Political Situation
Jair Bolsonaro is the 38th and current president of Brazil, having been sworn into that role at the start of 2019. By the time you’re reading this, that may have changed, but for the time being, this is the ongoing situation Brazilians have to deal with.
His far-right views have often created a great deal of controversy and tension for local residents, and while many will agree with his opinions, there’s no way of denying that it has split the country right down the middle.
That kind of divide isn’t something we want to be a part of.
5 WANT TO GO - Jiu-Jitsu Legacy
With the very first jiu-jitsu school opening in the early 1900s, it’s kind of staggering to us that BJJ didn’t take control of the combat sports world for a good few decades after that.
It’s well known for being one of the premier forms of martial arts in the world, and rightly so. It was based on the concept of smaller individuals being able to defend themselves against larger opponents, using the art of technique as opposed to just brute force.
It’s one of the most important forms of contact ever created, and that’s just a fact.
4 SCARE US - Income Inequality
A picture speaks a thousand words.
Income inequality is something that all countries have to deal with in one way or another, but few have to face the extremes quite as much as Brazilians do. There are many facts and figures that could adequately represent such a divide, but we’ll leave you with one of the most eye-opening.
If you’re earning the minimum monthly wage in the country, you would need to work 19 years in order to earn the same amount of money that the richest Brazilians earn in that space of time.
3 WANT TO GO - Fantastic Parties
If you’ve never been to, experienced or even thought about heading to a Brazilian party or carnival of any kind, then you need to buck up your ideas and try it out before it’s too late.
The best kinds of parties are the ones where you can just be free and enjoy yourself, and that’s the sort of vibe that Brazilians live for. There’s so much color, so much joy and so many things to see, that you’ll feel like you’re at a festival – even though you may just be out on any given high street.
2 SCARE US - Amazon Animals
There are some seriously beautiful animals to be found throughout the Amazon rainforest which, in itself, is one of the most special places you could ever hope to visit. With that being said, there’s always a danger lurking around the next corner.
Two of the more common dangers amongst the 427 mammal species and 400 amphibians are jaguars and anacondas. If you encounter one of these two creatures in the bushes, then it’s pretty much game, set and match.
You should definitely explore the area, but you’ve got so be so incredibly careful along the way.
1 WANT TO GO - The Music
While the genres may range in quality depending on your taste, the one thing that rings true for all forms of Brazilian music is this: you can feel it.
That sounds incredibly ‘out there’, but it’s true. Every single song has a purpose or a meaning, and every single song has the kind of beat that is enough to get you up and dancing – whether it be in the style of a first dance at a wedding, or as if you’ve just been told that you’ve won the national lottery