Reliving Tropicalismo – On and Off Screen

Channeling counterculture and rock n’roll, an eclectic and charismatic collective of artists galvanized fans and critics throughout the country with their shows, albums, performances, and happenings that came to be known collectively as Tropicalismo.

Food and Lodging that Make the Grade

When Michael first came to Salvador he was overwhelmed by the amount of unique “must-try” Bahian dishes there were to sample. A restaurant-school can provide a great solution for travelers seeking to taste a range of dishes.

The Making of Moon Living Abroad in Brazil

For Brazil expert Michael Sommers, the chance to compare and contrast his own expat experience with those of so many others was both unprecedented and revelatory. In this post he talks a bit about what it was like to consider writing a book for others seeking to live abroad in Brazil.

Taking Sweet, Sustainable Flight

Brazil is a notorious pioneer in the development and use of renewable biofuels. Veteran travel writer Michael Sommers discusses recent efforts to develop a sustainable alternative for airplane fuel.

Brazil’s First Love Motel – for Pets

Often a source of confusion for North American tourists, a motel in Brazil is where couples go for amorous encounters. Recently a pair of entrepreneurs in Minas Gerais just opened the first motel catering to pets. The wealthy can drop off their pets at this eight-story complex for breeding, grooming, and pampering.

Big City Fix in Belo Horizonte

Michael and his boyfriend take a weekend road trip from Diamantina to Belo Horizonte, a popular destination for Diamantinenses seeking a fix of Big City entertainment. While not a classic tourist destination, over the last couple of years, the city has made major investments in its leisure and cultural offerings.

When Oscar Came to Town

Most people who visit Diamantina are lured by the splendid colonial architecture that has earned the 18th-century diamond mining town UNESCO World Heritage status. Yet amidst the elegant colonial homes and ornate baroque churches lie the traces of a small but seminal moment in Brazilian Modernism.

Da Boca do Brasileiro: Diamantina Insights

Diamantina is one of Minas’ most charming and unpretentious historical towns, a beguiling patchwork of whitewashed houses, baroque churches, and cobblestoned squares. Get an inside look at Diamantina through the eyes of a local with recommendations of what to eat and what not to miss.

A (Brazilian) Winter’s Tale

Having grown up in Canada where temperatures of 0⁰ C (33⁰ degrees) were considered mild, “winter” in Salvador – and in much of the rest of tropical Brazil – has always struck author Michael Sommers as a somewhat surreal, and hilarious, concept.

Going for the Gold

Staying in Minas Gerais, Michael dives into a book about Brazil’s gold rush to get to know the local history even better. He shares a bit of what he’s learned from the Portuguese-language text with readers.