I have been to Venezuela in South America about 25 years ago, but as of now, it is not a very good place to visit unless you are prepared to defend yourself. The women from that country were often ranked very high in the beauty pageants. Traffic in Caracas was insane. Drivers would force their way into crowded traffic roads (within inches of other vehicles). In that country, you do not yield or you will never get anywhere. I got a fraud charge placed on my credit card account by the hotel where I stayed where they gave the information to another hotel to bill my account using a fake signature on the credit slip. I was able to prove it was fake by the fact that I left the country before the date of the transaction (my passport had a visa stamp). With the economic turmoil there, you risk getting robbed, assaulted, etc. if you show any money there.
My guess is that Brazil would be reasonably safe to visit if you avoid certain locations and do not wander around at night. If you have watched the Olympic coverage or read the travel guides, it has the beaches and coastal scenery and the Amazon jungle. I am sure you have heard of the "girl from Ipanema" song. Tom Brady and Matthew McConaughey are married to Brazilians. I am sure you heard about the Lochte incident at the Shell gas station. Besides the so-called robbery or extortion as he puts it, the invented story may be the attempt to hide what occurred before they got into the taxi. Two women were with two of the American swimmers and they left in a separate taxi at about the same time as the American swimmers from the party (around 5:47 AM according to surveillance tapes). They then stopped at the Shell station to relieve themselves soon after 6 AM. They returned back to their residence quarters before 7 AM. My guess is that the taxi trip should have been around 1/2 hour, except for the gas station stop. Why did not they relieve themselves before they left the party? Probably were still boozed up with liquor and possibly by certain activities with the ladies? If you saw the "carnival" show at the Olympics closing ceremony, there were several women in revealing costumes on a float. If you watched very closely (one camera was zoomed in right next to one woman), two women were dancing samba style and in one motion used her hand and pressed on the bosom region once as if to make sure the costume would not have a "wardrobe malfunction". Since the ceremonies were tape delayed, I am sure NBC would have cut out any kind of exposure beyond the cleavage.
The Lochte saga continues as sponsors dump him. The police side of the incident does not appear to be 100% accurate either as the report of damage to the soap dispenser and mirror did not appear to be the case as reported by a reporter who went inside the bathroom. The interpreter (a DJ) who was there was glad that he was able to defuse the situation because he thought it could have ended up worse.
I am a "boob man" :) and one of the costumed ladies on the float was quite "stacked". Her cleavage was as wide as the Grand Canyon. LOL
DC , Venezuelans are heading to the USA like many others..... I keep hearing of some girls here in LA the just made it across the border wanting to find a gringo and legalize their lives.....
The next big event that I can think to meet up and also be part of the spectacle is the World Cup 2018 in Russia. But, any American connected to the federal government is highly discouraged to go ,,,even if you're retired...Google, "US diplomats harassed by Russia".
Oh a lot of big boobies in South America compared to small boobies of Eastern Europe. ( no punt intended ) )))
As a coincidence, I am going to visit the Grand Canyon next month. Last time I was there was in 1994. Things are getting bad in Venezuela with over 100 people killed. Right now the current government still has support from Russia, China, and Cuba (oddly all have autocratic governments). Maduro is probably trying to emulate them. Saw a documentary on Cuba with its system of free living place, free education, and free health care. However, there is no free food and water. Run down machinery and buildings all over the place. One building had no sewage system and running water. The water only came on one hour a day. People dumped their waste material down to the basement and you saw some kind of living things squirming in the sewage pools. I am not surprised the interest to travel there is now dropping as airlines reduce flights to Cuba.
There was a list of the most violent cities in the world and Latin American cities made it to the top of the list (cities in Venezuela, Brazil, Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras). Chicago also made the list, but oddly Saint Louis was higher on the list.
Just returned from Vegas trip last week. I went past the Rio resort (not the one in Brazil) and also drove past the Mandalay Bay and Luxor resorts on Las Vegas Boulevard on the way to my hotel. The east side of the boulevard was mostly an open field with the airport boundary further east. It was mostly open until you got to the Tropicana resort. Packing 22000+ people into the open air street block must be almost like a can of sardines. The "American Ninja Warrior" TV finals competition were also near that location.