We are in Brazil with fashion obsessed blogger, food & travel lover, Tala Farah of mysmallobsessions. Based in the U.A.E, she talks to us about her favorite travel destination and what inspired her! We are so in love with the hotel she stayed in too!! Find out more and grab her itinerary and fantastic tips!
Here is her diary
Destination Rio De Janeiro in Brazil, its unbelievable! Nothing like anywhere I have ever visited before.
I visited Brazil on my honeymoon with my husband and we decided on South America because you need a good amount of time to visit it as it is really far away. The only time you get to do that is on your honeymoon!
Stayed at We stayed at the FASANO on Ipanema Beach, which was a fantastic choice because the beach culture in RIO is unlike any we have ever seen, it’s a very modern, boutique hotel and we LOVED it! A lot of celebrities who visit RIO stay there and it has a fantastic rooftop pool and bar which is packed both day and night. The pool overlooks all of Ipanema Beach. The food is really good, especially breakfast, and the location is unrivaled.
In your suitcase Naturally, I over packed all the wrong clothes! All you need in Rio is a pair of Havianas and a beach dress or shorts. Every single person from the sellers of food in the streets to the tourists are in Havaianas and very casual clothes. Only pack one pair of heels for night, summer dresses and a light sweater. In every hotel in Brazil, you will find complimentary Havaianas in your room instead of hotel slippers.
Dined at My favourite restaurant was Sushi Leblon, which is where Madonna dines while in Rio. It is quite casual and not very big but the sushi is so fresh. I especially loved the salmon sashimi tartare- yum! Another MUST is Celeiro, an organic kilo restaurant where you pay based on the weight of your plate which you fill from a buffet.
Shopped Brazil has many local, amazing designers and brands that are very inexpensive. We shopped at the Leblon Shopping Center where I found stunning jewellery by a designer called Camila Klein, beach clothes and swimwear by Rosa Cha (beware when buying swimwear because Brazilians like the bottoms to be super skimpy!), and casual clothes at NK.
Diary There is TONS to do in Rio and it is one of those cities where if you look right, you see the sea. If you look left, you would see lush green mountains filled of rainforests and Favelas (Colorful slums) , and if you look straight you would see roads and pavements with cars. Quite fascinating really!
Day 1: SIGHTSEEING We went to Christ the Redeemer which has an incredible view of all of RIO and the famous Sugarloaf mountain. To get to it, you drive through the largest suburban national park within any city in the whole world. We then visited the location where the yearly Carnaval is held, saw many stunning churches, the largest library in the world, drove through all of the beaches (Copacabana, Ipanema, and leblon), and visited a large colourful staircase made up of tiles from all over the world by a Chilean guy. We found tiles from Jordan and Bahrain- it is so worth the visit!
Day 2: Rio has to be seen on foot and by air. We rented a helicopter and flew all the way up to the top of Christ the Redeemer, flew past SugarLoaf Mountain, and went as close as possible to the favelas which are so beautiful you wouldn’t believe that it houses the poorest people in the world. We also flew over all of RIO’s beaches.
Football is just as part of Brazilian culture as the beach, and we went to a football game between two local teams. So much fun! While waiting in line to enter, we found the spectators drinking in the many bars lined across the street and dancing in broad daylight to blaring music. The Brazilians are such fun-loving and friendly people filled with energy.
Day 3: Sundays are religious beach days. This is an experience not to be missed! They close the whole corniche from sunrise till sunset and it becomes a pedestrian zone for beach goers, people doing exercise, children play areas, and food sellers. It was amazing to be a part of it.
Tips Brazilians are very friendly but no-one speaks any English- they speak Portuguese. It is quite safe but don’t wear any valuable jewellery and carry a cross-body bag. We had English-speaking guides who explained all of the sites and showed us around. I think that is the safest way to visit Rio.