When in Brazil...drink Brazilian coffee. Brazil is responsible for as much as 35 percent of the world's coffee production, so you know you won't have to venture far for a jolt. Start your day with a little milk in your coffee, then switch to a more traditional cup of Joe throughout the day.
Feijoada. Called Brazil's "national dish," this stew with black beans, pork and beef is usually paired with rice for a stick-to-your-sides meal. You'll find feijoada on the menu everywhere from cafes to the finest restaurants in Brazil.
Catch a football game. Known as soccer in the U.S. and football everywhere else, few countries do it better than Brazil, winner of five world cup tournaments. Brazil will host the 2014 FIFA World Cup as well. Maracana Stadium in Rio holds up to 180,000 screaming, chanting fans.
Beach hop. So many beaches in Brazil offer great sand, surf, and people watching, too. Consider starting your tour at Porto das Dunas. Other beaches worth exploring include Ipanema, Leblon, Olivenca, Canavieiras, Iracema, Cumbuco, Icarai, Iguape, Morro Branco and Copacabana.
Get wet at Beach Park (Ceara). The largest water park in Latin America is located at one of the more famous beaches in Brazil (Porto das Dunas). Rides range from the tame to the extreme.
Carnaval. Rio de Janeiro is Carnaval central but far from the only place where the fun happens. From Friday to Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, see glitzy parades with floats, dancers and drummers, or visit a street party or random costume ball.
Pao de Acucar, aka Sugar Loaf Mountain (Rio). Ride the cable car and see incredible views of Flamengo, Copacabana, Ipanema and more. Many visitors love to go at sunset.
The Amazon. Tour the jungle for an experience you'll never forget. Guides, such as Amazon Riders, will take you up piranha-infested waters where you'll see a variety of native wildlife and might even meet a few "locals."
Beach vendors. Some travelers no doubt consider the vendors wandering Brazil's beaches a nuisance. Others think of them as a blessing, allowing them to get food, drinks, music and more without leaving their beach towel.
Havaianas. These famous flip flops are inexpensive, come in a variety of colors, and all you'll need to go from the beach to a night on the town. Find them at a street market or a shopping mall.