Brazil Backpacking

9th December 2004 – 29th January 2005

When writing this chapter, I had been travelling nearly 5 years. When people ask me “what is your favourite country?” I answer without hesitation “Brazil”.  Why? Simple, the people. To me the people make a country, you can be in the most beautiful, idyllic paradise in the world, but if the people aren’t friendly your impression of the country is scarred. In a country where people don’t have much, they give so much, they give of themselves, weather it’s helping you when you are lost, or just giving you a smile.

Rio, one of the seven wonders of the world. Roadside bar, sampling the local fire water on the way to stay with Rodolfos Family

They love to party, what other country in the world shuts down for a couple of weeks for a national party -now that’s a country-. A couple of my fond memories was New Years spent on Copacabana Beach with 2 million Brazilians, and pre- carnival parties in Olinda. Theses moments were spent dancing in just my boardies and bare-feet in the sand at a live concert and in the streets with hoards of dancing frenzied Brazilians singing as loud as they could. But both of these memories have a grandmother beside me with a grandchild on their shoulders dancing and smiling at you, generations of good time people!

 The second reason Brazil was my favourite country was due to the time of my life I was there.  I was 23, was set for 6 weeks of backpacking with my companion Barney, unbeknown to us was the start of 2 years travelling together. Two young guys out to have a good time in summertime Brazil, not a worry in the world, no jobs, no girlfriends, no mortgages, no University, just enjoy and explore the wonderful country. The best part was my great Brazilian friend Roldolfo who I had met in Spain was our tour guide. For half of our trip we were taken into his family, treated like a couple of sons. We went and visited his cousins in the tiny hill villages of Mineas Gireas, spent Christmas with his extended family, partied and hung out with his friends whose warmth and friendliness was infectious. A place if I was to walk in there tomorrow after 5 years of not seeing them I would be welcomed as though I had been there just yesterday.

Barney and I with our Brazilian brothers. Pantanal - The biggest wetlands in the world and the most amazing sunsets I have ever seen.

As-well as its beautiful people, its a beautiful country! Beaches, lush forested rolling hills, wildlife, rivers, jungle, warm air, ocean, the biggest wetlands in the world, wildlife, bustling cities, and how can I forget, the bikinis (for the girls, the speedos)!

I’m not even going to go into the adventures that we had, you can read that in my book, go to Brazil and experience it yourself, you won’t be disappointed.

NEXT CHAPTER

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6 Responses to “Brazil Backpacking”

  1. Rodrigo April 7, 2010 at 3:07 am #

    Hi mate, I just saw you at breakfast. I,m from Brazil and agree with your opinion. I have been in NZ now for 4 years. I love here, but I miss so much what you discrabe. I used to guide NZ and AUS in Brazil and now what you felt there.
    I hope you enjot the rest of your jorney and if you go back to Brazil let me now if I can help.
    And with you come to Queenstown come over for a Brazilian BBQ.
    Cheers.

    • Hap April 7, 2010 at 4:18 am #

      Hi Rodrigo,
      I love your country, and amazing people, I was shown such a good time.
      I wish I had heard from you 2 weeks ago as I was passing through Queenstown, but next time.
      Cheers mate, Hap

  2. Doug April 7, 2010 at 8:38 pm #

    Yes Hap! Best country in the world, I’ve only seen Latin America and Europe so not a scratch on your list but you can’t help but love it. I lived with Barnz in Joao Pessoa just after the pre-carnaval parties in Olinda you talked about – madness for sure! Shame Paul never stayed longer but out of my year in Brazil, times with him were some of the best – gutted I never got to have a beer with you. He talked about your crazy times in Banff but we lost touch a while back, then he goes and shows me link to your tv interview – quality! What an awesome journey man. I’ve been reading your blogs for at least an hour! Loving the Torres del Paine stories, best hike ever, the pain of doing it mid-winter will stay with me forever! Seriously impressive time you spent on cruise ship dude, hectic crew cabin ordeal from the looks of your video tour. Anyway, all the best for final money saving stint and Africa adventure – I’ll be reading your blog with interest, really dig the way you tell it!
    I’m a pommie now living in Cape Town, agree totally with your take on all things travel. Always a place to kotch here if you happen to pass by the Cape.
    Happy travels man, take care, doug.

    • Hap April 8, 2010 at 7:29 am #

      Hey Doug,
      Nice comment mate, yep Pauls a good man. Torres Del Paine definitely a beautiful little place adn Brazil as well, well speaking of beautiful places everyone tells me Capetown is gold! no doub you be looking forward to the world cup. If we head through Capetown will catch up for that beer!

      Cheers Hap

  3. cheryl June 5, 2010 at 2:12 am #

    Hi Hap.

    Tiz paul’s mum and it is 2.08am here in Phuket. It is also Pauls 30th birthday. I was checking my emails and got your one about your last blog and I have been here ever since just reading chapters of your previous adventures and of course I had to start reading about you and my darling son. You are a great writer Hap and I have enjoyed reading about your adventures, with and without my son. I am so excited that Paul and Lindsay are coming to see me in Phuket. I am living out at Kata Beach at present. Not sure if I will stay here though. Might try China but after reading some of your story Brazil sounds awesome. Take care. Love from Pauls mum.

    • Hap June 5, 2010 at 7:57 am #

      G’DAY Cheryl!
      You’re quite the intrepid traveller yourself aren’t you? Working on cruise ships, Thailand, businesses, studying, a family, maybe you should start writting a blog!

      Firstly I think you wrote to me on Facebook agers ago, I don’t use the ol “book” too much therefore usually receive messages 2 months after they are sent, but I will endevour to check it more frequently. So my apologies for not replying.

      So your little boy is 30, what an old barstard (I’m talking about him of course)! haha, I gave him stick about that while I’m still in my 20’s, not long now though. I was able to give him a call and talk with him at his party in Auckland, he sounded very sober and as thought he was having a shitty time (Yes, there could be a hint of sarcasim in that).

      Was great times traveling with Barnz, best mates for life, and Brazil some of my most memorable travel moments. We shared alot together, there were times we could of killed each other which when you share that much time with one person that’s always going to happen, but it just strengthens what we had.

      And Barnz has helped me out soooooo much to get me where I am and i’m indebted to him for that.

      OK Cheryl, you enjoy barnz and the lovely Linds, you’ll have to fight the lady boys off him!

      Keep in contact and hope to see you at my new blog when it’s started.

      Nuthin But Love Hap

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