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About Brazil - General Info

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Brazil is the largest country in Latin America. It spreads across almost half (47.3%) of South America, and occupies a total area of 8,547,403.5 km2.

It is the fifth largest country in the world after Canada, the Russian Federation, China and the United States. Except for a small number of islands, Brazil is a single and continuous landmass. The Equator crosses through the Northern region, near Macapa, and the Tropic of Capricorn cuts through the South of the country, near São Paulo.

Brazil is an exotic, amazing, unforgettable country with incredible and various landscapes ranging from striking beaches to incredible diverse rainforest, Brazil counts with the mayor biodiversity of the world, colorful traditions and festivals and a very rich history.

and occupies the eastern half of South America bordering almost every country in the continent with Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay except with Chile and Ecuador.

It is the biggest country in South America with a total area of 8,547,403.5 km2.

Brazil’s east to west extension (4,319.4 km) is almost equivalent to the distance from north to south (4,394.7 km).

The country borders French Guiana, Suriname, Guiana, Venezuela and Colombia, to the north; Uruguay and Argentina, to the south; and Paraguay, Bolivia and Peru, to the west. Ecuador and Chile are the only two countries on the South American continent that do not border Brazil.

The Atlantic Ocean extends along the country’s entire eastern coast, providing 7,367 km of coastline.

Brazil counts also with several groups of islands in the Atlantic Ocean, such as the Archipelago of São Pedro and São Pablo, Fernando de Noronha, Trindade and Martim Vaz and Atol das Rocas.

Brazil is one of the most diverse countries with very varied geographical areas such as semi-arid areas, mountains, plains, tropical, subtropical and climates that range from dry to rainy tropical and equatorial climate which enhance the development of different ecosystems, such as the Amazon Rainforest, which has the greatest biological diversity of world, the Atlantic Forest and the Cerrado.

In the territory of Brazil, there is located some international renowned geographical areas such Pantanal reserve, Bananal Island, Marajo Island, Archipelago Fernando de Noronha, Chapada Diamantina among others.

This country is very famous because its football which is considered one of the best of the world and the Brazilian carnival which is famous for being one of the most allegorical parties on Brazil.

The Brazilian Carnival moves big quantities of money and is well known all over the world. Currently in Brazil prepares the carnival in most of the territory, but the most famous are the Carnival of Rio de Janeiro, Olinda, Recife and Salvador de Bahia.

Visit Brazil because it has it all, great cities with everything from striking tourist attractions to high technology, a wide range of ecosystems, an overwhelming mixture of cultures and races, warm people and much more.

In case you decided to travel Brazil, we suggest that you visit such best place in Brazil and in the whole world as Rio de Janeiro.

One of the main reasons to visit Rio when you travel Brazil is the fact that there are three world's best attractions in this city Christ the Redeemer Statue, Maracana Stadium and Sugar Loaf.

Rio is the city where you will be bored neither by day no by night and where such famous all over the world festivals in Brazil as Carnival are held.

If you travel Brazil, you should find spare time to visit Brazil's capital city Brasilia, which will tell you a lot about architecture of Brazil and art in Brazil and such impressive megapolis as Sao Paulo.

This city of Sao Paulo will impress you with admirable combination of different historical objects as ancient buildings, churches and museums of various epochs and styles and great number of glass skyscrapers.

The most visited places in Brazil are: Rio de Janeiro, Foz do Iguaçu, São Paulo, Florianópolis, Salvador, Balneário Camboriú, Fortaleza, Natal, Búzios and Manaus.

Language

The official language is Portuguese; the accent and the intonation, however, are very different from what one hears in Portugal and other former Portuguese colonies. Some people say that Brazilians speak “Brazilian”, just like Americans can say they speak “American”, and not English. And there are also many Brazilians who are descendants of immigrants and who speak German and Italian, especially in towns in southern Brazil.

Brazil – a country which greets visitors with a huge smile

The mixture of races has made Brazil a culturally rich and at the same time unique country. This miscegenation began with the Indian, the African and the Portuguese, but soon after, immigrants from around the world began to arrive: Europeans, Asians, Jews and Arabs. The result is a happy people, open to everything new, a people one can only find in Brazil.

Because of this massive diversity, Brazil is one of the last places on Earth where no one is a foreigner, where one can change one’s destiny without losing one’s identity and where each and every Brazilian has a little of the entire world in his or her blood. This may be the reason why Brazilian’s welcome people from another land so openly. According to surveys carried out with foreign tourists who visited the country, 97.2% intend to return soon; 56.5% had their expectations completely satisfied; and, for 31.7%, it exceeded their expectations in every way. As you can see, those who come to Brazil become fans on their first visit.

Find out more about Brazil by navigating through our site. Or better yet: visit the country in person and feel for yourself the high spirits and enthusiasm of our people.

Brazilian democracy

Brazil has been a Republic since 1889. Throughout this entire period, the country actually experienced little more than thirty years of democracy (1946-1964 and from 1985 to the present). Nevertheless, it is one of the most democratic nations on Earth. Brazilian democracy, which was won back after 21 years of a military dictatorship, proved to be vigorous and became an important part of the life of its people.

The National Congress has been operating like clockwork for 175 years. In the entire history of the country, only on three occasions did the elected representatives not complete their terms. The strength of the Congress is actually so great that not even the military dictatorship of the 1960s could do without it. There have been national elections in Brazil since 1823. And these elections have been open to voters in a manner almost unheard of even for European democracy standards.

Useful Information:

Visas and Passports

Tourists and visitors from Mercosul countries do not need to present passports. They merely need to show their ID cards. Visitors from other countries must present a passport that is valid for the next six months. For further information on Visas and necessary documentation, access: www.mre.gov.br or www.braziltour.com.

Electricity Voltage

Electricity voltages vary from one state to another. Check the voltage before connecting any electrical appliance to an outlet.

Car Hire

All the well know car hire firms have counters at the country’s main airports and in the main urban centers. Tourists may also book cars through their travel agencies.

Taxis

The tourist may opt to take an ordinary taxi easily found in the streets or through radio taxi services. It is recommended that accredited taxi services at the airports and at points nearby the main hotels be given priority. It is not usual in Brazil to tip a taxi driver although it is common to round off the amount and let the driver keep the change as a gratuity.

Tips

Most bars and restaurants include a service charge of 10% in the Bill. It is usual to leave a little extra if the service has been satisfactory. When no service charge has been included then a tip of 10% to 15% is the general rule.

Currency

The Brazilian currency unit is the Real (R$). Dollars and Travelers Checks can easily be changed in hotels, banks or travel agencies. Most establishments accept credit cards.

Communications

To make an international call, dial: 00 + operator code* + country code + area code (if there is one) + telephone number For reverse charge international calls dial 0800 7032111.

Operators:

Brasil Telecom 14
Embratel 21
CTBC 34
GVT 25
Intelig 23
Telefónica 15
Telemar 31

Language

The national language is Portuguese but it is a little different from the Portuguese spoken in Portugal

Climate

The climate is predominantly tropical with some variation according to the region. The average annual temperature in the north is 28º C and 22º C in the south.

Time Zones

Because of its continental dimensions Brazil has 4 time zones. The official time is Brasília time and it corresponds to 3 hours less than GMT. From September to February the clocks are put forward one hour in most Brazilian States. 

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