How to Stay Safe and Have a Great Time in Brazil

South America’s largest country is full of hidden wonders, from the majesty of the Amazon rainforest, to the beaches of Rio de Janeiro. But as with any trip, if you plan on traveling to Brazil, you’ll want to take the proper safety precautions. Keep reading to learn how to stay safe while making the most of your Brazilian adventure.

Urban Environments

If you’re from a big city, then you’ll have all the skills you need to navigate a city like Rio de Janeiro. The basic rules are:

  • Walk with confidence and purpose.
  • Don’t make eye contact with hustlers and definitely don’t engage them in conversation.
  • Don’t leave your belongings unattended.
  • Be aware of pickpockets and where you place your things. Don’t hang your backpack on the back of your chair and don’t open your wallet in the middle of the street.
  • Don’t walk alone at night, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar neighborhood.
  • Do your research on taxis and the average cost of goods so you know when someone is trying to rip you off. 

Beach Safety

It’s not just the human pickpockets you need to be wary of. Mother Nature herself can be just as dangerous. Here are a few critters to watch out for when you head to a Brazilian beach. 

  • Beware of piranhas in Sao Paolo. Always look for signage at the beach before jumping into the water, as they may hold important safety warnings regarding these sharp-toothed fish.
  • Certain currents can transport Portuguese man-of-war jellyfish into the waters of Rio de Janeiro. Stings from these jellies aren’t deadly, but they’re extremely painful, and can leave red welts for hours after the initial encounter.
  • The waters of Recife appear beautiful, blue, and welcoming, but hardly anyone even steps foot in the ocean. Why? This beach has the highest shark attack rate in the world. While it’s perfectly safe to sit in the sand and get some sun, do as the locals do and steer clear of the water.

Rainforest Environment

The Amazon Rainforest is one of the most precious, regal beauties in the world. Be sure to follow these precautions so you can enjoy it for all its wonder.


First, make sure to dress appropriately. Wear long sleeves, cover your legs, ankles, and feet, and apply sunscreen and bug spray. Mosquitoes and other stinging insects are everywhere in this hot, humid forest and they can carry disease and even poison. The Amazon is also home to bullet ants and you definitely don’t want to be bitten by these nasty guys. Even if you’re sweaty and hot, keep exposed skin covered up!

Of course, it wouldn’t be a complete trip to the Amazon if you didn’t go into the river. If you’re on a guided tour, make sure to follow instructions carefully. Possible dangers that lurk under the surface include electric eels and piranhas. Always heed local regulations before jumping into an unknown body of water.


How to Stay Safe and Have a Great Time in Brazil
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