Any city with much water is immediately called "Venice". Without searching, I know Portuguese Venice (Aveiro), American
Venice (Los Angeles), Spanish Venice (Mogan) and now Recife.
No comparison! Recife has several rivers and islands, lots of bridges, but... that's all. Two positive points: not many flies nor mosquitoes and the smell was better than in real Venice.
A strong effort is being made in the historical area of Recife, recuperating its most beautiful buildings. Before leaving Portugal, a friend told me that he didn't like Recife, because it was old, degraded, and dirty.
He is right! So, if you can't do as I do (to concentrate mainly in the good things and forget the ugly ones) then you are not going to like the old Recife.
One of my favorite pleasures in the beach is the afternoon swim, when the sun went down, people is leaving the beach, the water is warm, and calm takes control of the beach.
In Recife I seldom had that pleasure: the beach is abandoned at 5, and at 6 it is dark night. Be careful: A walk in the beach in the mild afternoon, may mean a return in the dark, as one day happened to Fernanda.
In the excellent museum of Brennand Institute, it was the love to Netherlands that led to display a piece clearly out of the context, or was it an attempt to integrate in the museum the (also out of context) temporary display, next door - the wax french dolls representing Fouquet's trial?
And why could we photograph everything except the weapons and the wax dolls?
Recife Palace hotel announced all the rooms with sight to the beach.
Well, maybe that's true. But a squeezed sight between two high buildings is... not exactly a lie... maybe... not serious. They would better abandon that reference.
In my hotel, an official brochure announced as special musical events, a night with forró at Jardins Bar. We went there expecting live music, and, advised by Roberto, we went early to get table. We ended eating a good expensive dinner, and when forró time came, the lights faded, young people came holding each one's beer, and forró started.
The announced artist was... the disk-jockey of a common discotheque.
The local taxi may offer to become your guide for the day, even after negotiating a price, this will still be at least double what you should pay.
Unique Suggestions: There are plenty of taxis and public transportation, so do not get taken in. Transportation is very easy. If you do hire a cab on the meter, he may still stop to let another guide try to get you on foot. Be Firm.
Fun Alternatives: When they suggest a price, saying no thanks doesn't always get the message across. Offer them nothing. As in zip, zero, zilch. Of course you may wish to have a guide, in that case ignore everything that I have said.