Explore Brazil in South America

Brazil
Country Guide

Map of the area of  in

Brazil with its capital Brasília is located in South America (Eastern South America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean). It covers some 8,511,966 square kilometres (slightly smaller than the US) with 191,908,000 citizens. Portuguese, Spanish, English and French are the languages commonly used by the people in Brazil (consider regional differences). Suriname, Peru, Bolivia, Uruguay, Guyana, Paraguay, French Guiana, Venezuela, Colombia and Argentina are bordering countries.

Brazil is the largest country in South America. Famous for its football (soccer) tradition and its annual Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Recife and Olinda. Owing to Brazil’s continental dimensions, varied geography, history and people, the country’s culture is rich and diverse. Music plays an important part in Brazilian identity. Styles like choro, samba and bossa nova are considered genuinely Brazilian. Brazil has many exciting cities, ranging from pretty colonial towns and coastal hideouts to hectic, lively metropolises. Brazil is a huge country with different climate zones. In the north, near the equator there is a wet and a dry season; from about Sao Paulo down to the south there is spring/summer/fall/winter. Brazil is one of a few countries that uses both 120 and 240 volts for everyday appliances. Expect the voltage to change back and forth as you travel from one place to the next -- even within the same Brazilian state, sometimes even within the same building. There is no physical difference in the electric outlets (power mains) for the two voltages.

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Landscape, climate and basic hints for travelling

National Tourism office

Website: Brazil Tourism

Phone: +55 21 259 61 65
Phone: +55 21 511 25 92

The landscape features mostly flat to rolling lowlands in north and some plains, hills, mountains, and narrow coastal belt. The average density of population is about 23 per km². The climate in Brazil can be described as mostly tropical, but temperate in south. Potential threats by nature are recurring droughts in northeast or floods and occasional frost in south.

To reach someone in Brazil dial +55 prior to a number. There are 41,497,000 installed telephones. And there are 173,959,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks operate on frequencies of 900, 1800 Mhz. Websites typically end with the top level domain ".br". If you want to bring electric appliances (e.g. battery charger), keep in mind the local 110/220V - 60Hz.

Learn more on our Brazilian Facts page.

Description of the flag of Brazil

Green with a large yellow diamond in the center bearing a blue celestial globe with 27 white five-pointed stars; the globe has a white equatorial band with the motto ORDEM E PROGRESSO (Order and Progress); the current flag was inspired by the banner of the former Empire of Brazil (1822-1889); on the imperial flag, the green represented the House of Braganza of Pedro I, the first Emperor of Brazil, while the yellow stood for the Habsburg Family of his wife; on the modern flag the green represents the forests of the country and the yellow rhombus its mineral wealth; the blue circle and stars, which replaced the coat of arms of the original flag, depict the sky over Rio de Janeiro on the morning of 15 November 1889 - the day the Republic of Brazil was declared; the number of stars has changed with the creation of new states and has risen from an original 21 to the current 27 (one for each state and the Federal District).

National administrative regions of Brazil

Historical background information

Following more than three centuries under Portuguese rule, Brazil gained its independence in 1822, maintaining a monarchical system of government until the abolition of slavery in 1888 and the subsequent proclamation of a republic by the military in 1889. Brazilian coffee exporters politically dominated the country until populist leader Getulio VARGAS rose to power in 1930. By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil underwent more than a half century of populist and military government until 1985, when the military regime peacefully ceded power to civilian rulers. Brazil continues to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of its interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, it is today South America's leading economic power and a regional leader, one of the first in the area to begin an economic recovery. Highly unequal income distribution and crime remain pressing problems.

Learn more on our Brazilian Facts page.

Based on the content from wikitravel.org. The original article can be found here based on the work of these users. Geography information is based on the data provided by geonames.org, CIA world facts book Edition 2010 and 2013, Unesco, DBpedia, wikipedia and others.