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Travel Notes: Latin America: Brazil: Brazil Regions


Drifting down the Amazon, or looking for festivals in Bahia, discover what the different regions of Brazil have to offer.

The original inhabitants of the land we know as Brazil today included the Arawaks and Caribs in the north, the Guarana on the east coast and along the River Amazon, the Ge towards the south, and the Pano in the west.

Around Brazil

Brazil is made up of 26 states and the federal district.

The states are Acre, Alagoas, Amapa, Amazonas, Bahia, Ceara, Espirito Santo, Goias, Maranhao, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Minas Gerais, Para, Paraiba, Parana, Pernambuco, Piaui, Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande do Norte, Rio Grande do Sul, Rondonia, Roraima, Santa Catarina, Sao Paulo, Sergipe, and Tocantins.

The federal district includes Brasilia, which replaced Rio de Janeiro as the national capital in 1960.

The Amazon

The length of the Amazon from Iquitos, in Peru, to its mouth on the north-eastern coast of Brazil is about 3,700 km. All of it is navigable.

Drifting Down the Amazon:
Walter Glaser takes a trip down the Amazon, from Iquitos to Manaus.


As the Portuguese stepped up colonization of the territory, Thom� de Souza became the first governor-general in 1549, and founded Bahia (Salvador) as his capital.

With the shortage of labourers, large numbers of Africans were brought into the region as slaves.

Bahian Festivals

It is affectionately said that: 'When Bahians are not actually participating in a festival they are rehearsing for one'.

Regions of Bahia

From north to south, east to west, Bahia offers a wide range of options for journeys with historic, cultural, and natural attractions.


Visit Fortaleza:
Fortaleza, the capital city of the State of Ceara, has been for decades one of the most popular destinations of Brazilian tourists.

Rio de Janeiro

The French had eyes on the coast and, in 1555, founded a colony far to the south of Bahia; on the bay of Rio de Janeiro.

The Portuguese soon destroyed the colony, and in 1567 they established their own settlement of Rio de Janeiro on its site.

Regiao dos Lagos

Of course Rio has wonderful beaches but if you want to discover something special, head north of the city to Cabo Frio and Buzios.

The North East

There were frequent attacks by the British and the Dutch after Philip II of Spain inherited the crown of Portugal in 1580.

The Dutch even set up the Dutch West India Company around Recife and Olinda, in the north east, in the 1630's.

In 1640, the successful Portuguese revolt against Spanish overlordship, returned the sovereignty of Brazil to Portugal.

The Dutch renounced their claims to Brazilian territory, in 1661, after uprisings backed by Portugal made it no longer profitable to remain there.

General Brazil

Viva Brazil:
Brazilian megasite put together by Walter Morales. If there's a half decent Brazilian link out there, Walter seems to find it. The only problem is you'll need a lot of time to weed through the pages and find what you want.

Brazil Cities:
Find out more about Brazil's major cities.

Brazil Travel Notes

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