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Cabo Frio, Brazil

Cabo Frio is a city in the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It was founded by the Portuguese on November 13, 1615. As of 2016, its population is 212,289, and its area is 401 km²

Understand

Cabo Frio is a popular beach destination which draws a lot of beachgoers and surfers from around the state, as well as the neighboring landlocked state of Minas Gerais. It was founded in the 16th Century, after the Portuguese chased the French away from the area, and remained small for most of its history. In recent years, with the income from the growing tourism industry and the influx of retired folks from Rio de Janeiro, it has grown to a city of over 185,000, with a wide range of amenities for the traveler.

Cabo Frio, Brazil

Destination:

Cabo Frio is a city in the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It was founded by the Portuguese on November 13, 1615. As of 2016, its population is 212,289, and its area is 401 km²

Understand

Cabo Frio is a popular beach destination which draws a lot of beachgoers and surfers from around the state, as well as the neighboring landlocked state of Minas Gerais. It was founded in the 16th Century, after the Portuguese chased the French away from the area, and remained small for most of its history. In recent years, with the income from the growing tourism industry and the influx of retired folks from Rio de Janeiro, it has grown to a city of over 185,000, with a wide range of amenities for the traveler.


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Cabo Frio, Brazil: Port Information


Cruise ships drop the anchor, and tourists are tendered close to the town.

Get around Cabo Frio, Brazil


The town itself, surrounded by hills and resembling a fishing village, has white dunes, sandbanks, lagoons, unspoiled beaches and beautiful headlands.
You can get around by bus, by taxi, by car, by bicycle, or take a boat trip.

What to see in Cabo Frio, Brazil


  • Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Guia (Capela Nossa Senhora da Guia). Constructed by the Franciscans around 1740.
  • Church of Saint Benedict (Igreja de São Benedito), Passagem. Built in 1701 to hold mass for the slaves.
  • Sào Mateus Fort (Forte de São Mateus do Cabo Frio). Built by the Portuguese between 1616 and 1620.

What to do in Cabo Frio, Brazil


Beaches

  • Fort Beach (Praia do Forte) - With 7.5 kilometers of sand and a 16th-century Portuguese fort at its north end, this is the main beach in town.
  • Peró Beach (Praia do Peró) - Good for surfing.
  • São Bento Beach (Praia São Bento)
  • Siqueira Beach (Praia do Siqueira) - 4km-long beach with kiosks that sometimes have live music.
  • Sudoeste Beach (Praia do Sudoeste)
  • Dune Beach (Praia das Dunas) - The best surfing beach around, with strong waves. Take care if you swim, as there is an undercurrent.
  • Foguete Beach (Praia do Foguete)
  • Palmeiras Beach (Praia das Palmeiras)
  • Unamar Beach (Praia de Unamar)

Scuba diving

Cabo Frio and Arraial do Cabo are great locations for scuba diving. The southerly cold and northerly warm current meet and marine life are abundant. Visibility is between 8 and 20 meters. Best time of year is in April.

  • Over Sea Dive Center, Rua José Augusto Saraiva, nº 2 Ilha da Draga, ☎ +55 22 2647-5375. Dive center with good equipment and bilingual instructor (Santiago). Offers a one day tour for certified divers including two immersions and some snacks. 

What to eat and drink in Cabo Frio, Brazil


Eat

Cuisine

Brazil's cuisine is as varied as its geography and culture. On the other hand, some may find it an unrefined melange, and everyday fare can be bland and monotonous. While there are some unique dishes of regional origin, many dishes were brought by overseas immigrants and had been adapted to local tastes through the generations. Italian and Chinese food in Brazil can often be as baffling as Amazonian fare.

The standard Brazilian set lunch is called prato feito, with its siblings commercial and executive. Rice and brown beans in sauce, with a small steak. Sometimes farofa, spaghetti, vegetables and French fries will come along. Beef may be substituted for chicken, fish or others.

Dishes

  • Brazil's national dish is feijoada, a hearty stew made of black beans, pork (ears, knuckles, chops, sausage) and beef (usually dried). It's served with rice, garnished with collard greens and sliced oranges. It's not served in every restaurant; the ones that serve it typically offer it on Wednesdays and Saturdays. A typical mistake made by tourists is to eat too much feijoada upon the first encounter. This is a heavy dish — even Brazilians usually eat it parsimoniously.
  • Brazilian snacks lanches (sandwiches) and salgadinhos (most anything else), including a wide variety of pastries. Look for coxinha (deep-fried, batter-coated chicken), empada (a tiny pie, not to be confused with the empanada - empadas and empanadas are entirely different items), and pastel (fried turnovers). Another common snack is a misto quente, a pressed, toasted ham-and-cheese sandwich. Pão-de-queijo, a roll made of manioc flour and cheese, is very popular, especially in Minas Gerais state - pão-de-queijo and a cup of fresh Brazilian coffee is a classic combination.
  • Farofa: cassava flour stir-fried with bacon and onion bits; the standard carbo side dish at restaurants, along with white rice
  • Feijão verde: green beans with cheese gratin
  • Paçoca: beef jerky mixed with cassava flour in a pilão (big mortar with a big pestle). Traditional cowboy fare
  • Pastel: deep-fried pastry filled with cheese, minced meat or ham
  • Tapioca (or more precisely, "beiju de tapioca"): made with the cassava starch, also known as tapioca starch. When heated in a pan, it coagulates and becomes a type of pancake or dry crepe, shaped like a disk. Some will serve it folded in half; others will roll it rocambole-style. The filling varies, but it can be done sweet or savory, with the most traditional flavors being: grated coconut/condensed milk (sweet), beef jerky/coalho cheese, plain cheese, and butter (savory). However, it has become a "gourmetized" food item, to be treated with creativity; nutella, chocolate, napolitano (pizza cheese/ham/tomato/oregano) and shredded chicken breast/catupiry cheese being almost standard options nowadays.

Brazilian "fusion" cuisines

  • Pizza is very popular in Brazil. In Sāo Paulo, travelers will find the highest rate of pizza parlours per inhabitant in the country. The variety of flavors is extremely vast, with some restaurants offering more than 100 types of pizza. It is worth noting the difference between the European "mozzarella" and the Brazilian "mussarela." They differ in flavor, appearance, and origin but buffalo mozzarella ("mussarela de búfala") is also often available. The Brazilian "mussarela," which tops most pizzas, is yellow and has a stronger taste. In some restaurants, particularly in the South, pizza has no tomato sauce. Other dishes of Italian origin, such as macarrão (macaroni), lasanha and others are also very popular.
  • Middle-eastern and Arab (actually Lebanese) food is widely available. Most options offer high quality and a wide variety. Some types of middle-eastern food, such as  quite and esfiha have been adapted and are available at snack stands and fast food joints nation-wide. You can also find shawarma (kebabs) stands, which Brazilians calls "churrasco grego" (Greek Barbecue)
  • São Paulo's Japanese restaurants serve up lots of tempura, yakisoba, sushi, and sashimi. The variety is good, and mostly the prices are very attractive when compared to Europe, USA, and Japan. Most Japanese restaurants also offer the rodizio or buffet option, with the same quality as if you ordered from the menu. Sometimes, however, it can be quite a departure from the real thing. In particular, Brazilian-made sushis often employ copious amounts of cream cheese and mayonnaise, and breaded sushi with tare sauce ("hot rolls") are as popular as "raw fish" sushi. The same can be said of Chinese food, again with some variations from the traditional. Cheese-filled spring rolls, anyone.Japanese restaurants (or those that offer Japanese food) are much commoner than Chinese and can be found in many Brazilian cities, especially in the state of São Paulo.

Restaurants

  • ALL restaurants will add a 10% service charge on the bill, and this is all the tip a Brazilian will ever pay. It is also what most waiters survive on, but it is not mandatory, and you may choose to ignore it, although is considered extremely rude to do it. In some tourist areas, you might be tried for extra tip. Remember that you will look like a complete sucker if you exaggerate, and stingy and disrespectful if you don't tip. R$5-10 are considered good tips.
  • There are two types of self-service restaurants, sometimes with both options available in one place: all-you-can-eat buffets with a barbecue served at the tables, called rodízio, or a price per weight (por quilo), very common during lunchtime throughout Brazil. Load up at the buffet and get your plate on the scales before eating any. In the South, there's also the traditional Italian "galeto," where you're served different types of pasta, salads, soups, and meat (mostly chicken) at your table.
  • Customers are allowed by law to visit the kitchen and see how the food is being handled, although this is extremely uncommon and doing so will probably be considered odd and impolite.
  • Some Brazilian restaurants serve only meals for two. The size of the portions might not say in the menu, -ask the waiter. Most restaurants of this category allow for a "half-serving" of such plates (meia-porção), at 60-70% of the price. Also, couples at restaurants often sit side-by-side rather than across from each other; observe your waiter's cues or express your preference when being seated.
  • Fast food is also very popular, and the local takes on hamburgers and hot-dogs ("cachorro-quente," translated literally) are well worth trying. Brazilian sandwiches come in many varieties, with ingredients like mayonnaise, bacon, ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato, corn, peas, raisins, French fries, ketchup, eggs, pickles, etc. Brave eaters may want to try the traditional complete hot dog (just ask for a completo), which, aside from the bun and the sausage will include everything on display. The ubiquitous X-Burger (and its varieties X-Salad, X-Tudo, etc.) is not as mysterious as it sounds: the pronunciation of the letter "X" in Portuguese sounds like "cheese," hence the name.
  • Large chains: The fast-food burger chain Bob's is found nationwide and has been around in the country for almost as long as McDonald's. There is also a national fast-food chain called Habib's which despite the name serves pizza in addition to Arabian food (and the founder is Portuguese, by the way). Although not as widespread, are Burger King and Subway, also have a presence.

Drink

Alcohol

Brazil's national booze is cachaça (cah-shah-sah, also known as aguardente ("burning water") and pinga), a 40% sugar-cane liquor known to knock the unwary out quite quickly. It can be tried in virtually every bar in the country. Famous producing regions include Minas Gerais, where there are tours of distilleries, and the city of Paraty. Pirassununga is home to Caninha 51, Brazil's best-selling brand. Outside Fortaleza, there is a cachaça museum (Museu da Cachaça) where you can learn about the history of the Ypioca brand.

Drinking cachaça straight, or stirring in only a dollop of honey or a bit of lime juice, is a common habit on the Northeast region of the country, but the strength of cachaça can be hidden in cocktails like the famous caipirinha, where it is mixed with sugar, lime juice, and ice. Using vodka instead of cachaça is nicknamed caipiroska or caipivodka; with white rum, it's a caipiríssima; and with sake, it's a caipisaque (not in every region). Another interesting concoction is called capeta ("devil"), made with cachaça, condensed milk, cinnamon, guarana powder (a mild stimulant), and other ingredients, varying by region. If you enjoy fine brandy or grappa, try an aged cachaça. Deep and complex, this golden-colored spirit is nothing like the ubiquitous clear liquor more commonly seen. A fun trip is to an "alambique" - a local distillery, of which there are thousands throughout the country - not only will you be able to see how the spirit is made from the raw cane sugar, you will probably also get a better price.

Well worth a try is Brazilian whiskey! It's 50% imported scotch - the malt component -and approximately 50% Brazilian grain spirit. Don't be misled by American sounding names like "Wall Street." It is not bourbon. Good value for money and indistinguishable from common British blends.

While imported alcohol is very expensive, many international brands are produced under license in Brazil, making them widely available, and fairly cheap. You can buy booze in the tax-free after landing at Brazilian airports, but it is more expensive than buying it outside the airports.

Beer

Beer in Brazil has a respectable history because of the German immigrants. Most Brazilian beer brands tend to be way less thick and bitter than German, Danish or English beer. More than 90% of all beer consumed in Brazil is Pilsner, and it is usually drunk very cold (at a temperature close to 0°C). The most popular domestic brands are Brahma, Antarctica, and Skol. Traditional brands include Bohemia, Caracu (a stout), Original and Serra Malte (another stout). They are easily found in bars and are worth trying but are usually more expensive than the popular beers. There are also some national premium beers that are found only in some specific bars and supermarkets; if you want to taste a good Brazilian beer, search for Baden Baden, Colorado, Eisenbahn, Petra, Theresopolis, and others. There are also some international beers produced by national breweries like Heineken and Stella Artois and have a slightly different taste if compared with the original beers.

There are two ways of drinking beer in bars: draft or bottled beer. Draft lager beer is called chope or chopp ('SHOH-pee') and is commonly served with one inch of foam, but you can make a complaint to the withbartender if the foam is consistently thicker than that. In bars, the waiter will usually collect the empty glasses and bottles on a table and replace them with full ones, until you ask him to stop, in a "tap" charging system. In the case of bottled beer, bottles (600ml or 1l) are shared among everyone at the table and poured in small glasses, rather than drunk straight from the bottle. Brazilians like their beer nearly ice-cold - hence, to keep the temperature down, bottles of beer are often kept in an insulated polystyrene container on the table.

Wine

The Rio Grande do Sul is the leading wine production region. There are a number of wine-producing farms that are open to visitors and wine tasting, and wine cellars selling wine and fermented grape juice. One of these farms open to visitors is Salton Winery, located in the city of Bento Gonçalves. The São Francisco Valley, along with the border of the states of Pernambuco and Bahia, is the country's newest wine-producing region. Brazilian wines are usually fresher, fruitier and less alcoholic than, for instance, French wines. Popular brands like Sangue de Boi, Canção and Santa Felicidade and others with prices below R$6.00 are usually seen as trash.

In Minas Gerais, look for licor de jabuticaba (jabuticaba liquor) or vinho de jabuticaba (jabuticaba wine), an exquisite purple-black beverage with a sweet taste. Jabuticaba is the name of a small grape-like black fruit native to Brazil.

Coffee and tea

Brazil is known world-wide for its high-quality, strong coffee. Café is so popular that it can name meals (just like rice does in China, Japan and Korea): breakfast in Brazil is called café da manhã (morning coffee), while café com pão (coffee with bread) or café da tarde (afternoon coffee) means a light afternoon meal. Cafezinho (small coffee) is a small cup of strong, sweetened coffee usually served after meals in restaurants (sometimes for free, just ask politely). Bottled filtered coffee is being replaced by stronger espresso cups in more upscale restaurants.

Chá, or tea in Portuguese, is most commonly found in its Assam version (orange, light coloured). Some more specialised tea shops and cafés will have Earl Gray and green tea available as well.

Mate is an infusion similar to tea that is very high in caffeine content. A toasted version, often served chilled, is consumed all around the country, while Chimarrão (incidentally called a mate in neighbouring Spanish-speaking countries) is the hot, bitter equivalent that can be found in the south and is highly appreciated by the gaúchos (the Rio Grande do Sul dwellers). Tererê is a cold version of Chimarrão, common in Mato Grosso do Sul and Mato Grosso state.

Soft drinks

If you want a Coke in Brazil, ask for coca or coca-cola, as "cola" means "glue", in Portuguese.

Guaraná is a carbonated soft drink made from the guaraná berry, native to the Amazon area. The major brands are Antarctica and Kuat, the latter owned by Coke. Pureza is a lesser known guaraná soft drink specially popular in Santa Catarina. There is also a "Guaraná Jesus" that is popular in Maranhão. Almost all regions in Brazil feature their own local variants on guaraná, some which can be quite different from the standard "Antarctica" in both good and bad ways. If traveling to Amazonas, be sure to try a cold "Baré," which due to its huge popularity in Manaus was purchased by Antarctica and is becoming more available throughout northern Brazil.

Tubaína is a carbonated soft drink once very popular among Brazilians (particularly the ones born in the 70s, 80s and early 90s) and becoming extremely hard to find. It was once mass-produced by "Brahma" before it became focused on beers only. If you happen to find a place that sells it, try it.

Mineirinho (or Mate Couro) is also a popular soft drink made of guaraná and a typical Brazilian leaf called Chapéu de Couro. Although most Brazilians say that it tastes like grass, older people (+70 years) claim that the drink has medicinal properties.

Fruit juices

Fruit juices are very popular in Brazil. Some cities, notably Rio de Janeiro, have fruit juice bars at nearly every corner.
  • Nothing beats coconut water (água de coco) on a hot day. (Stress the first o, otherwise, it will come out as "poo" (cocô)). It is mostly sold as coco gelado in the coconut itself, drunk with a straw. Ask the machete-wielding vendors to cut the coconut in half so that you can eat the flesh after drinking the water.
  • Açai (a fruit from the Amazon) is delicious and nutritious (rich in antioxidants) and can be found widespread across the nations. In the Amazon region it's used as a complement to the everyday diet, often eaten together with rice and fish in the main meal of the day. Curiously, outside of the Amazon region, it's typically used in blended in combination with guarana (a stimulant) powder and a banana to re-energize from late-night partying. It is served cold and has a consistency of soft ice. There are also açai ice creams available.
  • Maracuja (passion fruit) (careful during an active day as this has a relaxant effect)
  • Caju (cashew fruit) and
  • Garapa: freshly pressed sugarcane juice
  • Manga (mango) are also great juice experiences.
  • Mangaba
  • Umbu
  • Vitamina: milk shake with fresh fruits
Brazilians have great taste when it comes to mixing juices.

Shopping in Cabo Frio, Brazil


Money

Brazil's unit of currency is the Real (pronounced 'hay-AHL'), plural Reais ('hay-ICE'), denoted "R$" (ISO code: BRL). One real is divided into 100 centavos. As an example of how prices are written, R$1,50 means one real and fifty centavos.

Foreign currency such as US dollars or euros can be exchanged major airports, and luxury hotels (bad rates), exchange bureaus and major branches of Banco do Brasil (no other banks), where you need your passport and your immigration form.

The Real is a free-floating currency and has become stronger in the past few years. Especially for US citizens, prices (based on exchange rates) have increased quite a bit.

There are many federal regulations for dealings with foreign currency, trading in any currency other than real in Brazil is considered illegal, although some places in big cities and bordering towns accept foreign money and many exchange offices operate in a shady area. Also, exchange offices are almost impossible to find outside of big cities. Currency other than US dollars and euros is hard to exchange, and the rates are ridiculous. If you would like to exchange cash at a bank, be prepared to pay a hefty commission. For example, Banco do Brasil collects US$15 for each transaction (regardless of amount).

Banking

Look for an ATM with your credit/debit card logo on it. Large branches of Banco do Brasil (charging R$6,50 per withdrawal) usually have one, and most all Bradesco, Citibank, BankBoston and HSBC machines will work. Banco 24 Horas is a network of ATMs which accept foreign cards (charging R$10 per withdrawal). Withdrawal limits are usually R$600 (Bradesco) or R$1000 (BB, HSBC, B24H), per transaction, and in any case R$1000 per day. The latter can be circumvented by several consecutive withdrawals, choosing different "accounts," i.e., "credit card," "checking," "savings." Note that most ATMs do not work or will only give you R$100 after 10 PM.

In smaller towns, it is possible that there is no ATM that accepts foreign cards. You should therefore always carry sufficient cash.

Wiring money to Brazil can be done through Western Union [16] transfers to be picked up at a Banco do Brasil branch in most cities, and also quite a few exchange offices.

Travelers' checks can be hard to cash anywhere that does not offer currency exchange.

A majority of Brazilian shops now accepts major credit cards. However, quite a few online stores only accept cards issued in Brazil, even though they sport the international logo of such cards.

Coins are R$0.05, R$0.10, R$0.25, R$0.50 and R$1. Some denominations have several different designs. Bills come in the following denominations: $2, R$5, R$10, R$20 R$50 and R$100.
Tipping
While tips can sometimes be given for some services, delivery or tourism, tips are very uncommon. It is usually not expected in cabs, although rounding up the fare occasionally takes place. It should be noted that many restaurants include a 10% delivery charge in the note, with no further tippings being required. Such a charge often depends on the municipality. Tipping bartenders are not customary.

Souvenirs

Similar to the rest of Latin America, hand-crafted jewelry can be found anywhere. In regions that are largely populated by Afro-Brazilians, you'll find more African-influenced souvenirs, including black dolls. Havaianas jandals are also affordable in Brazil and supermarkets are often the best place to buy them — small shops usually carry fake ones. If you have space in your bags, Brazilian woven cotton hammock is a nice, functional purchase as well. Another interesting and fun item is a peteca, a sort of hand shuttlecock used in a traditional game of the same name, similar to volleyball.

Shopping

It's not a bad idea to pack light and acquire a Brazilian wardrobe within a couple of days of arrival. It will make you less obvious as a tourist, and give you months of the satisfied gloating back home about the great bargains you got whenever you are complimented on your clothing. Brazilians have their sense of style, and that makes tourists - especially those in Hawaiian shirts or sandals with socks - stand out in the crowd. Have some fun shopping, and blend in. Another good reason for buying clothes and shoes in Brazil is that the quality is usually good and the prices often cheap. However, this does not apply to any foreign brand as imports are burdened by high import taxes - therefore, do not expect to find any good prices on brands like Diesel, Levi's, Tommy Hilfiger, etc. To figure your Brazilian trousers size, measure your waist in centimeters, divide by 2, and round up to the next even number.

Store windows will often display a price followed by "X 5" or "X 10", etc. This is an installment-sale price. The price displayed is the per-installment price, so that, "R$50 X 10", for example, means 10 payments (typically monthly) of R$50 each. The actual price is often lower if you pay in cash.

Make sure any appliances you buy are either dual voltage or the same as in your home country. Brazil is 60 Hz, so don't buy electric clocks or non-battery operated motorized items if you live in Europe or Australia. The voltage, however, varies by state or even regions inside the same state. (see Electricity below).

Brazilian-made appliances and electronics are expensive. If not, they are usually of poor quality. All electronics are expensive compared to European or US prices.

Brazil uses a hybrid video system called "PAL-M." It is NOT at all compatible with the PAL system of Europe and Australia. Television began in black and white using the NTSC system of the USA and Canada, then years later, using PAL for its analog colour—making a unique system. Nowadays, most new TV sets are NTSC compatible. However, the newly introduced digital TV standard is not compatible with that of most other countries. Digital video appliances such as DVD players are also compatible with NTSC (all digital color is the same worldwide), but make sure the DVD region codes, if any, match your home country (Brazil is part of Region 4). Prices for imported electronic goods can be quite expensive due to high import tax, and the range of domestic electronic gadgets is not very wide. Also, be aware that the term "DVD" in Brazil is both an abbreviation for the disc itself and its player, so be specific to avoid confusion.

Although the strength of the Real means that shopping in Brazil is no longer cheap, there are still plenty of bargains to be had, especially leather goods, including shoes (remember sizes are different though). Clothes, in general, are a good buy, especially for women, for whom there are many classy items. Street markets, which are common, are also a very good option, but avoid brand names like "Nike" - you will pay more, and it's probably fake. Don't be afraid to "feel" an item. If it doesn't feel right, most likely it isn't! Beware of the dreaded "Made in China" label. If there's none, it's probably Brazilian, but be aware: some Brazilian-made products are less robust than their American or European counterparts.

Safety in Cabo Frio, Brazil


By law, everyone must carry a photo ID at all times. For a foreigner, this means your passport. However, the police will mostly be pragmatic and accept a plastified color photocopy.

Crime

Even the most patriotic Brazilian would say that the greatest problem the country faces is the crime. Brazil is one of the most criminalized countries of the world; therefore, the crime rate is high, even for a developing nation. Pick-pocketing and theft are rampant, but perhaps what is more scary to visitors - and also depressingly common - are robberies at gunpoint, which target both locals and tourists. There are cases of armed criminals attacking hotels (from guesthouses to luxurious resorts) and even package tour buses, and armed robberies in crowded areas at plain daylight.

Most visitors to Brazil have trips without any incidents, and a few precautions can drastically reduce the likelihood of being a victim of crime. Even with those precautions, though, the chance of a bad incident may still not be negligible. Check the individual city/area articles for advice on specific cities or places. Generally speaking, with exception of a few prosperous countryside areas and smaller towns (mostly in the southern part of the country), most areas in Brazil aren't extremely safe, so it is advisable to avoid showing off expensive possessions in public areas, to avoid deserted streets during the night, and especially, to avoid poor, run-down towns or neighbourhoods. There are cases of Brazilians or tourists being shot down without warning when entering certain neighborhoods, either in a car or on foot. If you want to visit a favela (slum neighborhood) or indigenous village, use a licensed, reputable tour service.

Intercity buses are safe, but in large cities, intercity bus terminals are often located in run-down, unsafe areas of the city, so it is prudent to take a taxi to and from the terminal rather than walk to or from it. In touristy places, tourists are often seen as "preferred prey" for criminals, so it is better to avoid looking like a tourist. For example, avoid being seen carrying a large camera or guidebook (leave them in a backpack and use them discreetly only when necessary), or dressing in a way dramatically different from the locals. It is perfectly fine to sometimes stop locals to ask questions, but avoid looking clueless and vulnerable when in public.

Road safety

Murder is probably the top fear of visitors to Brazil, but traffic-related deaths are nearly as common as murders - in fact, the chance of a road fatality in Brazil is comparable to countries with poor road safety reputation, like Malaysia or Vietnam. This may come as a surprise as the traffic in Brazil, especially in large cities, appears to be relatively well-organized compared to these countries. However, this apparent sense of safety is where the danger lurks - Brazil has a large share of irresponsible drivers, who defy speed limits, driving under the influence of alcohol, and sometimes ignore traffic lights. Therefore, always keep your eyes open when crossing the road, even when the pedestrian light is green, and the cars have stopped - you never know when a motorbike will pop up from between two cars.

In certain parts of the country, especially in the northern part, roads tend to be poor-maintained, and enforcement of traffic regulations tend to be lax. Although sometimes unavoidable, it is worthwhile to re-consider taking very long road trips inside the country when there is the option of taking a plane instead.

Stay healthy 

Food from street and beach vendors has a bad hygienic reputation in Brazil. The later in the day, the worse it gets. Bottled and canned drinks are safe, although some people will insist on using a straw to avoid contact with the exterior of the container.

Bear in mind the heat and humidity when storing perishable foods.

Tap water varies from place to place, (from contaminated, saline or soaked with chlorine to plain drinkable) and Brazilians themselves usually prefer to have it filtered.

In airports, bus stations, as well as many of the cheaper hotels and malls, it is common to find drinking fountains (bebedouro), although not always safe. In hostel kitchens, look for the tap with the cylindrical filter attached. In more expensive hotels, there is often no publicly accessible fountain, and bedrooms contain minibars, selling you mineral water at extremely inflated prices — buying bottled water from the store is always the best alternative.

Vaccination against yellow fever and taking anti-malaria medication may be necessary if you are traveling to central-western (Mato Grosso) or northern (Amazon) regions. If you're arriving from Peru, Colombia or Bolivia, proof of yellow fever vaccination is required before you enter Brazil. Some countries, such as Australia and South Africa, will require evidence of yellow fever vaccination before allowing you enter the country if you have been in any part of Brazil within the previous week. Check the requirements of any country you will travel from Brazil. In coastal Brazil, there's also a risk for dengue fever, and the Zika virus outbreak in Latin America hit Brazil hard with more than 60,000 confirmed cases in 2015 and 2016.

Public hospitals tend to be crowded and terrible, but they attend any person, including foreigners. Most cities of at least 60,000 inhabitants have good private health care.

Dentists abound and are way cheaper than North America and Western Europe. In general, the quality of their work is consistent, but ask a local for advice and a recommendation.

The emergency number is 190, but you must speak Portuguese.

Beware that air conditioning in airports, intercity buses, etc. is often quite strong. Carry a long-sleeved garment for air-conditioned places.

Although Brazil is widely known as a country where sex is freely available, it is sometimes misunderstood regarding HIV. Brazil has one of the best HIV prevention programs and consequently, a very low infection rate compared with most countries. Condoms are highly encouraged by governmental campaigns during Carnaval and distributed for free by local public medical departments.
 

Language spoken in Cabo Frio, Brazil


The official language of Brazil is Portuguese, spoken by the entire population (except for a few, very remotely located tribes). Indeed, Brazil has had immigrants from all parts of the world for centuries, whose descendants now speak Portuguese as their mother tongue.

Brazilian Portuguese has some pronunciation differences with that spoken in Portugal (and within, between the regions there are some quite extreme accent and slang differences), but speakers of either can understand each other. However, European Portuguese (Luso) is more difficult for Brazilians to understand than the reverse, as many Brazilian television programs are shown in Portugal. Note that a few words can have a different meaning in Brazil and Portugal, usually slang words. An example of this is "Rapariga" which in Portugal means young girl, and in Brazil means a prostitute.

English is not widely spoken except in some touristy areas. Don't expect bus or taxi drivers to understand English, so it may be a good idea to write down the address you are heading to before getting the cab. In most big and luxurious hotels, it is very likely that the taxi fleet will speak some English. If you are really in need of talking in English, you should look for the younger people (-30 years), because they have a higher knowledge of the language and will be eager to help you and exercise their English.

LOCAL TIME

2:18 pm
June 20, 2019
America/Sao_Paulo

CURRENT WEATHER

25.44 °C / 77.792 °F
moderate rain
Fri

22.15 °C/72 °F
broken clouds
Sat

21.61 °C/71 °F
light rain
Sun

22.65 °C/73 °F
sky is clear
Mon

22.65 °C/73 °F
sky is clear

LOCAL CURRENCY

BRL

1 USD = 0 BRL
1 EUR = 100 BRL
1 GBP = 0 BRL
1 AUD = 0 BRL
1 CAD = 0 BRL

Latest travel blogs about Cabo Frio, Brazil




Brazil. Buzios. Boat Trip. P.2.


Our second stop during the boat trip. Clouds began to cover the sky. People on the beach are still swimming. We are sailing further. Here are the fishermen. This is the third stop. Of course, we were fed there. We are going back. This was the end of our trip. We were...

Previously, the  city of Buzios was just a fishing village. In 1964, Brigitte Bardot came here. She liked this place and publicized it. Buzios is located on a peninsula washed by the warm waters on one side and by the cold waters on the other side. Today we have a sea tour as it's...