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BRAZIL BY RAIL

BRAZIL BY RAIL

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14 nights

2ND November – 16th November 2015

Day 1: Monday 2nd November; Arrive to Rio de Janeiro transfer to hotel

On arrival once you have cleared any formalities; you will be met by you driver and guide for the private transfer directly to the very comfortable Hotel Windsor Copa where once checked into your room you will receive a short briefing on your tour and have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. The evening is free for you to explore and enjoy the city of Rio in this perfect location.


Day 2: Tuesday 3rd November; Rio de Janeiro to Vitoria

Today you have a relaxed start and time to explore the city further in the morning; this you can do independently or you may wish to book our morning tour to the beautiful botanical Gardens (Local payment to guide). At approximately 1:30pm you will be transferred from your hotel to GIG airport to fly from Rio to Vitoria. The flight is operated by GOL airlines departing Rio at 17:02 hrs arriving to Vitoria at 18:04 hrs. On arrival in Vitoria you will be met by your driver and guide for the transfer to the Hotel Ibis. As you have a late arrival we will arrange for dinner to be given in the hotel. Meals: breakfast, dinner


Day 3: Wednesday 4th November; Vitoria to Barão de Cocais

Today we will have an early departure at 6:15am after breakfast to go to the Train Stn for our 12 hours intercity journey from Vitoria to Barão de Cocais, near to Belo Horizonte, where we transfer to our comfortable bus to Santa Barbara where we will overnight. This train line is owned and managed by the second largest iron ore mining company in the world…..The Brazilian Company Vale. Iron ore is their business, but they continue to maintain this passenger train. Enjoy one of the most scenic journeys through a spectacular landscape, all in executive class. This train offers onboard services, air-conditioning, a restaurant where you can choose from a wide range of cuisine and comfortable seating to watch the world go by. On arrival in Barão de Cocais you will be transferred to the village of Santa Barbara where you check into the Hotel Quadrado. This is a more traditional hotel offering a warm welcome from your full day’s journey, dinner is included so you can relax and enjoy the facilities. Meals: breakfast and dinner railtour1



Day 4 Thursday 5th November; Santa Barbara to Ouro Preto

After breakfast you will travel by bus to Ouro Preto, a colonial town which was declared ‘Cultural Monument of Mankind’ by the UNESCO. One arrival you will be met and transferred to the Hotel Solar Do Rosario Again this is a very traditional building full of charm and history, from here you can explore the surrounding area and enjoy very comfortable rooms. Ouro Preto means ‘Black Gold’, a marvellously preserved historic city in the Brazilian highlands, renowned throughout the country for its art and colonial architecture. Once a gold mining town, Ouro Preto is today a World Heritage Site, fascinating to explore for its magnificent Baroque architecture, museums, quaint Ouro Preto hotels, historic churches and scenic views. After lunch we will have a walking tour exploring the small cobbled streets where you can admire the neat gables, magnificent baroque buildings and gold decorated churches. Meals: breakfast and lunch


Day 5; Friday 6th November; Ouro Preto to Mariana by train

This morning we will leave the hotel and enjoy a lovely train ride to Mariana. Kindly be advised that at the train station we will find The Coffee Railway Car where clients will have the option to have their breakfast with direct payment (breakfast is included at the hotel). The Coffee Car offers visitors a complete infrastructure for leisure and gastronomy, with a varied, high-quality menu. While we wait for our train you will have the opportunity to visit the railroad museum, which tells of how the railroad was built with great difficulty during the late 19th and early 20th century, due to challenges posed by the terrain.Afterwards we will board at 10am on a panoramic wagon (if available by the time the booking is made) with the historic narrow gauge steam railway from Ouro Preto to Mariana, set in the mountains of Minas Gerais. The beautiful rail journey will take about 1 hour giving you time for pictures on route. The small town of Mariana is considered the oldest of the colonial mining towns in Minas Gerais, it was founded by the bandeirantes just before Ouro Preto in July 1696. The town retain many fine colonial buildings, most of them built in the first half of the 18 century. Here we will visit the Art Sacred Museum and the Gold Mine called Passagem. After lunch we will return to to Ouro Preto by train and transfer back to the Hotel Solar Do Rosario.Meals: breakfast and lunchImportant note:The ride between Ouro Preto and Mariana is usually done in a Mary-Smoke train but if it is out of service at the moment for maintenance the service will be hauled by a diesel locomotive G8. It takes away some of the charm but not the fun and the wagons maintain the same design of the old trains, with wooden interiors. railtour2railtour3

Day 6; Saturday 7th November; Ouro Preto to Tiradentes After breakfast we will have a transfer by bus to the city of Tiradentes, taking about three hours it offers another scenic journey. On arrival in the small town of Tiradentes we will stay at the hotel Serravista. This has again been selected for its more traditional charm in keeping with the tour by rail and good location to explore the main places of interest. In the afternoon you will be taken on a “City Tour” of Tiradentes (approximately 3½hrs). This excursion provides an opportunity to learn a little about the colonial architecture.

Day 7; Sunday 8th November; Tiradentes full day

Today is a full day tour, boarding a steam train that runs on the 76 – cm gauge track between Tiradentes and São João del Rey (13 km). From the platform you can see the train getting ready for the journey back, turning on the old turntable before re-joining the train. This train has been in continuous operation since 1881 – a testament to the durability of the rolling stock and locomotives made by the Baldwin Company of Philadelphia. While in São Joao del Rey we will visit the railway museum with the largest collection of steam engines throughout Brazil. Our return to Tiradentes by train will be at 3pm where you will transfer back to the hotel Serravista for a further night. Meals: breakfast and lunch railtour47

Day 8; Monday 9th November; Tiradentes to Belo Horizonte

In timing with your flight times the group will be transferred to Belo Horizonte by bus (approx 3 hours) to Confins airport. The flight operated by GOL airlines leaves Confins airport at 13:25hs arriving in Curitiba at 18:58hs. On arrival in Curitiba you will be met by your driver and transfer to the Hotel Nikko which offers you a high level of comfort set in a great location.


Day 9; Tuesday 10th November; Curitiba to Morretes by train

After an early breakfast you will be met for your transfer from Hotel to Curitiba train station where we will board at 8am train to Morretes ‘Serra Verde Express’. This is a return journey on the Luxury Litorina train. This tourist train runs through the mountain region of Paraná, called Serra do Mar, affectionately called Serra Verde, going to the coast of the state, in a route full of beautiful nature and breathtaking views. The construction of the railway officially started on February 1880, and it was considered an impossible achievement by many European Engineers due to the soil condition. The project aimed social development enabling communication between the cities of the Paraná coastal region to the State capital city, Curitiba. Moreover, it became essential to connect the Paranaguá port to the Brazilian southern states, making possible the crops exportation, in order to ensure their economic growth. Along the way, visitors will be dazzled by lush landscapes through the 110km – 68.35 mi, environmental preservation, culture and historical heritage. Whoever is looking for an alternative and unforgettable tour program, this is the option. At Morretes station, visitors will make the official and mandatory stop including lunch (barreado is a typical local shrimp food). The city of Morretes is one of the most beautiful of Paraná and fundamental historical importance to the state. The region has one of the most beautiful scenery in the south of the country and its central landmark, Rio Nhundiaquara, which crosses the city and still allows the bravest, the practice of sports such as canoeing, tubing and fishing. The return to Curitiba will be made by road arriving in Curitiba at 6pm.

Meals: breakfast and lunch

 

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Day 10; Wednesday 11th November; Curitiba to Foz do Iguaçu

Early depart from hotel to the airport since our flight operated by GOL airlines depart Curitiba airport at 09:56hs arriving IGU at 11:10hs. On arrival in Iguaçu the group will be transferred to the Hotel Bella Italia. The hotel offers you a great place to relax in the sun, there is a large pool area and restaurant with an evening show to relax from travel and enjoy.


Day 11; Thursday 12th November; Full day visit the Brazilian and Argentinean side of the Falls

Your private tour will start in the morning after your breakfast where you are met by your guide at 8am and cross the Tancredo Neves Bridge with its lovely view of the Iguassu Canyon en route to the Iguazú National Park in Argentina. Visit the upper and lower walkways which allow a different perspective and more intimate contact with the falls adjoining rainforest filled with orchids, bromeliads, birds and other wildlife. The highlight of the trip is a visit to the suspended platform at the very brink of the abysmal Devil’s Throat – largest of the waterfalls. Stopping for lunch you will continue to the Brazilian side of the falls. This side of the falls is more crowded than the Argentinean side because there is only one path leading to the falls. The views offer a more panoramic view because it opposes the Argentinean side which has a greater number of falls. Returning to your hotel you have the evening free to explore the town and enjoy a restaurant of your choice. Meals: breakfast and lunch

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Day 12; Friday 13th November; Iguaçu Falls to Rio de Janeiro

Today you will be met at the appropriate time for your transfer to the airport for your flight to Rio de Janeiro. On arrival you will be met by your driver for the private transfer to the Hotel Windsor Copa in Copacabana which is located 1 block away from the famous Copacabana beach. Once settled in the rest of the day at leisure.


Day 13; Saturday 14th November; Full-day (8 hours) visiting Christ Statue + Santa Teresa

After breakfast we will leave the hotel to visit the symbol of the Brazilian culture Christ Redeemer. The most popular attraction of the City is the statue of Christ located atop of Corcovado-Hunchback peak at 710 meters-2.320 ft completed in 1931. From the peak’s platform the panoramic view includes downtown Rio, Sugarloaf Mountain, the Lagoa (lake ) Rodrigo de Freitas, Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon beaches, Estádio do Maracanã (Maracanã Stadium), and several of Rio’s favelas. The Corcovado Train (Portuguese: Trem do Corcovado) is a rack railway system that leaves from Cosme Velho Stn to the summit. The line is 3.8 km (2.4 mi) long, It is a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3⁄8 in) gauge rack railway using the Riggenbach rack system. The line was opened by Emperor Dom Pedro II on 9 October 1884. Initially steam hauled, the line was the first railway to be electrified in Brazil in 1910, and was re-equipped in 1980 with trains built by SLM of Winterthur in Switzerland. It is one of the few remaining railways using three-phase electric power with two overhead wires, at 800 V 60 Hz. There are four trains, each of two cars. Three of them are used simultaneously. The trip takes approximately 20 minutes and departs every 20 minutes, giving a capacity of 540 passengers per hour.

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The Santa Teresa Tram (Portuguese: Bonde de Santa Teresa), is a historic tram line in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, connecting the city centre with the primarily residential, inner-city neighborhood of Santa Teresa, in the hills immediately southwest of downtown. It is currently maintained mainly as a tourist attraction, and is nowadays considered a heritage tramway system, having been designated a national historic monument in 1988. The line has a very unusual gauge: 1,100 mm (3 ft 7 5⁄16 in). The main line is 6.0 kilometres (3.7 mi) long. It passes over the 45-metre (148 ft) high Carioca Aqueduct, a former aqueduct constructed in the 18th century[1] and beneath which standard-gauge electric trams used to run. Except for the aqueduct, the route is shared by motor vehicles. Before the 1960s, Rio de Janeiro trams served the entire downtown area and all near suburbs, but since 1967 only the Santa Teresa line remained. Lastly, it offered two regular services. Having run continuously since its opening in 1877, it is one of the oldest street railway lines in the world and, having been electrically powered since 1896; it is the oldest electric railway in all of Latin America. It is also the only remaining metropolitan tram system in Brazil. Meals: breakfast and lunch

 


Day 14; Sunday 15th November; Half day Sugar Loaf Mountain

After breakfast leaving the hotel at 8am with check out already done and the luggage in the bus, it’s time to visit the Sugar Loaf Mountain. Boarding your cable car the journey to the summit is 396 meters, the massive granite stone peak at the entrance to Guanabara Bay. This is a two stage cable car with magnificent views along its entire route but once at the summit the views towards the city curling around the mountains and shores overlooked by the statue of Christ the Redeemer is inspiring. Afterwards we will visit the Metropolitan Cathedral which is located down-town of Rio and stop for lunch at the Confeitaria-Bakery Colombo. The bakery was inaugurated in September 17th- 1894 by the Portuguese Joaquim Borges de Meirelles and José Manoel Lebrão, the Colombo Bakery is part of the Historical and Artistic Heritage of Rio de Janeiro as the ultimate symbol representing the belle epoque in the city. Its Art Nouveau decor is comparable to what is most typical and representative of that time in the salons of Europe. In his grand spaces shine like mirrors parts Belgian and prevail in the beautiful rosewood furniture and Italian marble countertops. Returning to the hotel you have the evening free to enjoy your last night in the city. Meals: breakfast and lunch

Day 15; Monday 16th November; Homeward bound

Your guide will be happy to assist you in any way should you care to take any additional excursions (local payment to guide). You can visit the many places of interest and enjoy the cuisine in the many restaurants to be found. Your adventure comes to an end today as you are transferred to the airport for your international departure flight. Meals: breakfast

 

Cost of the Tour

The price of your tour as described in the itinerary, based on one person in a double room with private bathroom = U$ 3.466,00 per person.


What’s included?

•All transport as stated in the itinerary – this includes internal flights, all train journeys and all transfers;

•All accommodation as stated;

•Breakfast & lunch as per the itinerary;

•The services of your local tour controller;

•Personal guides (unless stated local payment to guide);

•Tours and excursions included as stated (unless optional with a local payment);

•Museum and national park entrance fees.


What’s not included?

•International flights

•Personal Travel Insurance

•Evening meals (unless otherwise stated)

•Personal expenses, beverages, tips and laundry services


If you wish to extend your tour we offer four days and three nights on the beautiful paradise of Buzios for just and extra U$ 1950,00 per person based on a double occupancy. Accommodation in Buzios will be at the Pousada Abracadabra. Breakfast is included as well as shared transfer from Rio to Buzios and Buzios to Rio International airport.

www.abracadabrapousada.com.br/?&idioma=ing

Beautiful Búzios sits on a jutting peninsula scalloped by 23 beaches. A simple fishing village until the early ’60s, when it was ‘discovered’ by Brigitte Bardot and her Brazilian boyfriend, it’s now one of Brazil’s most upscale and animated seaside resorts, littered with boutiques, fine restaurants, villas, bars and posh pousadas. Buzios is washed by ocean currents from Antartica and Brazil which means…waters are clear with rich marine life.

The Mediterranean touch introduced by the Portuguese has not been lost – indeed, the narrow cobblestone streets and picturesque waterfront contribute to Búzios’ image as Brazil’s St Tropez.

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