9 Tips for Traveling in Brazil

Souvenir Hunters – Souvenir hunters will find music, local crafts and musical instruments worthy mementos of their trip. Artisan fairs (feira de artesanato) are common weekend events in larger cities and offer a good range of souvenirs and martial arts gifts.

Samba Jamming – From the religious dances of Candomblé to the martial arts movement of capoeira, dancing finds its way into almost all aspects of the Brazilian lifestyle. No dance has achieved the same popularity as samba, a composite of diverse indigenous, African and European dancing styles. The origins of samba lie in a fusion between the indigenous lundu dance and the batuque, a circular dance practiced by African slaves. By the late-nineteenth century, these styles adopted European characteristics to become mesemba and eventually modern samba. The percussive music of samba is equally rich in its origins and influences.Spontaneous samba jam session called batucadas erupt in the streets on occasions of national celebration

A lot of Air – Everywhere you go, you’ll find places selling the famous pastel and caldo de cana, a must. The pastel is a deep fried pastry with chicken, mince or cheese filling. Do not be intimidated by their size (usually huge)- there’s a lot of air inside the pastry.

Musical Instruments – berimbau- a stringed instrument commonly used in capoeira performances. It consist of a bow with metal string attached to a dried gourd which acts as a resonating chamber. A rod and a ring or coin is struck against the string to produce sound. pandeiro-originally from East Africa, the tambourine is considered an essential part of Brazilian rhythm and is common throughout the country of Brazil. reco-reco- a grooved piece of bamboo or bamboo or iron also used in capoeira. A rod is scraped against the grooves to produce the rasping sound.

Gringo – Chances are high that when you are in Brazil, you’ll hear or be addressed as gringo (or gringa for women). In Brazilian Portuguese, the term refers to almost anyone who is not Brazilian (including people from other Latin countries). It’s generally not an insult (although if it’s modified by burro/burra m/f, ‘stupid’, then it probably is!), so there’s usually no need to take offence.

Brazilian Family Tree – Ancient Celtic myths refer to the mist-shrouded island of Hy Brazil – a storm less haven somewhere in the Atlantic. The island appeared on charts in the 14th century and was to remain on British maps as late as the 1870s. Some scholars have suggested the the Portuguese explorers were familiar with the Celtic stories and names South American country after Hy Brazil. A more accepted theory is that Brazil derived from the name of a dye-producing East Indian tree. When a similar tree was discovered in the new land, it became Brazil’s first successful export and lent the country its present name.

Greetings & Goodbyes – A greeting kiss on the cheek is quite common between women, and also between members of the opposite sex, even on first encounters. The number of kisses ranges from one to three, depending on the region. Shaking hands is normal greeting between men, though a hug between friends is not uncommon.Find out to say some lines in Portuguese in the Foreign Language Section

Kung Fu Dancing – Capoeira originated as and African art developed by slaves to fight their masters. It was disguised with introduction of musical accompaniment to make it seem like dance. In its modern form, it combines elements of dance and fighting and is known for its fluid and circular movements. Another form of Brazilian Martial Arts is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Which is probably one of the most deadliest forms of Fighting

Many Thanks – You’ll notice there are two words for ‘thank you’ in Brazilian Portuguese, obrigado and obrigada. Their use is determined by the gender of the person doing the thanking. Guys say obrigado and girls say obrigada. Learn a little Portuguese in the Language Section

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