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Tourism in Brazil - History

Tourism in Brazil - History


In 2017 6,589,000 tourist arrived in Brazil, that was an increase of 40,000 from the year before. Tourism accounted for 7,094,000 jobs in Brazil in 2017 which represents 7.8% of the employment. Toursim was responsible for 8.5% of Brazils GDP

7 Things to Know about Brazil Prostitution

Source: tup wanders

Prostitution, no doubt, is one of the ancient professions on earth, dating back to the golden early days. It is, even at present, a common practice for a compact majority of the Brazilian population even now. Although prostitution, the act of exchanging sex for money that is, might be the universe’s ancient profession, so many aspects about it pose the need for demystification and thus, we have taken a quick overview of the entire prostitution scenario in Brazil.

1. Sao Miguel das Missoes

Sao Miguel das Missoes was a reduction founded in the 18th century by the Jesuits or the ‘Society of Jesus’ and intended to convert the indigenous Guarani Indian population to Christianity.

Very little remains of Sao Miguel das Missoes, most of this historic site having been destroyed in 1768 as part of a campaign to expel the Jesuits. The church, of which some ruins remain, had actually already been ravaged by a fire in 1760.

2. Carandiru Prison Museum

Known locally as ‘Casa de Detencao’ – the House of Detention – Carandiru Prison in Brazil’s capital São Paulo was designed and built by Samuel das Neves in 1920 and at the time, it was a state-of-the-art correctional facility that more than met the demands of Brazil’s 1890 Criminal Code.

The first inmates arrived in 1956 and very quickly, overcrowding became a serious issue. At its peak, there were over 8,000 prisoners at Carandiru (with only 1,000 guards for company) and inevitably, gangs seized control of the cell blocks. The medical staff were reluctant to go in which led to untreated conditions, itself leading to infection and death. Malnutrition and starvation were also common and during the 1980s, a severe AIDS epidemic ran rife through the prison.

Eventually in October 1992, a prisoner revolt at the inhumane conditions started the mother of all prison riots. In what became known as the Carandiru Massacre, the Policia Militar do Estado de São Paulo, making little or no effort to try the diplomatic route, stormed the cell blocks, killing 102. A further nine prisoners were allegedly killed by fellow inmates in one of modern Brazil’s darkest hours.

The prison’s death certificate was signed and it was demolished in 2002. Today, the Paulista Penitentiary Museum in the north of the city occupies the one remaining cell block and it aims to preserve the prison’s documents that tell the story of one of the world’s most brutal prisons.

The 21,000-piece collection includes detailed paintings, sculptures and furniture made by prisoners in creative workshops as well as objects ‘that help to reassemble the daily lives of the prisoners’ including rudimental tattoo machines and makeshift weapons.

Brazil: A Look at Developing Tourism and Promoting Culture to Benefit the Economy

(This post was the second in my application to attend the Florens 2012 Cultural and Environmental Heritage Week, a conference held in Florence to promote the many ways culture generates economy. You can see here how a small team of us helped spread the word about the foundation’s mission and their brand worldwide here.)

Brazil will soon be watched by the entire world as it hosts the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016. These events are incredibly important to Brazil, especially as the first South American country to host the Olympics. The country knows that it must prove that it is safe, organized, and capable of handling such huge events. Brazil also knows that these events are a golden opportunity to show the world the progress it has made and what a great country it is: that it is a culturally rich country full of natural beauty, friendly people, modernized cities, and diverse tourist destinations to please any traveler.

The incredible natural beauty of places like Fernando de Noronha is just one reason to visit Brazil.

However, at this point, Brazil (and all of South America) receives a surprisingly small number of tourists. Actually, this has been obvious to me I’ve been going there every year since 2000 (because I’m married to a Brazilian) and, with the exception of a few places like Rio, rarely notice other non-Brazilians. In contrast, I always notice that the country seems somewhat unprepared for tourism. According to the article “An untapped market” on The Economist, Brazil receives fewer tourists per year than Bulgaria. That’s right. Brazil, the fifth-largest country in the world, with its natural wonders and incredibly beautiful forests, waterfalls, mountains, and thousands of kilometers of coast its lively culture seen in its food, festivals, and art and the relatively easy traveling conditions compared to other developing countries, still receives only around 5 million tourists a year.

Compared to other South American countries, Brazil is huge, resulting in diversity in culture and landscape, including an enormous coastline.

The problem is not limited to Brazil (and, in fact, Brazil leads South America in terms of the number of international tourists). According to the UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organization) 2010 report, South America received only 2.3% of total international tourism in 2009. That number should be shocking, especially if you have experienced the culture and natural beauty of South America. What a shame it is that these developing countries, which need more economic resources to develop their infrastructure and tackle poverty, have not had the foresight to fully promote tourism as a sustainable source of income. According to the UN report, as countries invest in tourism development, socio-economic progress results “through the creation of jobs and enterprises, infrastructure development and the export revenues earned.” Globally, tourism accounts for an average of 5% of a country’s income and 6-7% of its employment, tourism is growing and expected to continue to grow, and that growth is particularly pronounced in the world’s developing countries. Clearly with the importance tourism already holds for the economy worldwide and its expected expansion, tourism could provide a sustainable source of income and employment in Brazil if the country would work harder to attract more visitors.

At the same time that Brazil steps into the spotlight of the World Cup and Olympic games, the economy is slowing. This does not mean that Brazil is in trouble in fact, it has been an example economic growth while the rest of the world has undergone recessions. However, after considerable economic slowing, Brazil has been trying to stimulate the economy with little success and is now about to unveil a new stimulus package with more than $6o billion to be invested in railroads and highways.

If the country builds new railroads and highways, and invests about $25 billion dollars in preparing for the World Cup and Olympic Games, Brazil will be that much closer to being well prepared to receive more tourism. What if the national and state governments took a hard look at tourism in Brazil and made the appropriate investments? Wouldn’t that, combined with the fact that worldwide tourism is expected to grow steadily in the future, assure Brazil of a bigger piece of the tourism pie and thereby more economic gains? While this would be a large undertaking, a logical place to begin is building on what Brazil already has: culture and history.

Based on the popularity of the destinations that attract the most tourists, like France, Spain, and Italy, it is clear that tourists like to see history and culture. Nevertheless, when visiting São Paulo, Brazil’s largest city and one of the largest cities in the world, it is not easy to find cultural attractions or historical sites even though they are there, and when they are found, they often disappoint. The city has the potential to be promoted as a destination of culture, but, without some investment in making it tourist-friendly, few will make it there. Here are some examples:

The unusual architecture of the Museum of Art of Sao Paulo houses a grand collection of western and contemporary Brazilian art.

1) Only in Portuguese at São Paulo’s world-class museums? São Paulo has excellent museums that display various aspects of Brazilian cultural identity and history. They could attract much more tourism if they were better prepared to receive international tourists. Let’s take a quick look at three of the city’s best museums: MASP (Museu do Arte de São Paulo), Museu Afro-Brasil, and Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo. What surprises me most is that they do not have information in English (or other languages) on their websites, making it difficult for tourists to find out the location, hours, cost, and current exhibits. They are all housed in wonderful examples of Brazilian architecture, but when I visited, none offered information explaining the building’s design or history. MASP has good English translations inside the museum, but the other two have information only in Portuguese. When I visited the new Museu Afro-Brasil, I was very disappointed not to be able to fully understand or appreciate the beautifully-displayed exhibits of the history of Afro-Brazilian culture. All three of these are important museums that show Brazilian history and cultural products (specifically, contemporary Brazilian art, cultural and historical artifacts, and paintings showing Brazil’s 500-year history) but need at least the simple change of adding translations to the websites and museum exhibits.

historical buildings in the center of Sao Paulo

2) A historical center that no one visits? São Paulo has a historical center, but even Paulistas (residents of São Paulo) will tell you that nobody goes to the city center because it’s dirty and unsafe. I ventured there last month and unfortunately was disappointed. There are many historical buildings that together could make an interesting and beautiful walking tour if they were restored and labeled. As in other cities, the problem of homelessness is complex, but the fact that the nicest historical buildings were surrounded by groups of homeless people, many of whom had actually built makeshift homes against the building’s exteriors, needs to be addressed before tourists will feel comfortable exploring the city center. I am not criticizing Brazil for the homelessness or the homeless people for being in that situation instead, I believe the city needs to find ways to deal with this issue for the sake of tourism as well as the sake of the homeless.

São Paulo has many beautiful historic buildings, but visiting them is not always easy or welcoming.

3) Architecture that is not treated as worth visiting? São Paulo is home to many works by the famous Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Possibly the best place to see his work and, at the same time, appreciate Latin American culture is the Latin America Memorial (Memorial da América Latina), a complex of several buildings around two large squares. It also includes a striking sculpture of a hand with a map of Latin America bleeding to remember the struggles and sacrifices of the Latin American people. The complex hosts public events that celebrate Latin American culture the day I was there, the independence of Bolivia was being celebrated.

Part of the Latin America Memorial and the famous hand sculpture on the left

When I visited last month, I walked around in awe of the architecture, but it seemed like a secret, almost neglected tourist site. I imagined the grand attraction this memorial could be. The buildings should be labeled in Portuguese and other languages. Flyers with information about Niemeyer and the history of the complex, including the cultural relevance of the memorial, should be available. Visitors should be able to tour at least some of the interiors (I left only imagining how incredible the interiors must be based on the exteriors). Finally, the memorial must be treated as a city treasure–trash littering the front of a building and one of Niemeyer’s sculptures should not be tolerated.

One of the most striking buildings is surrounded by water, but the water was smelly and full of litter.

If São Paulo made even the changes suggested above, I would recommend it to people traveling to South America, but as the city is now, despite all its strengths, I would probably not recommend traveling there. It is not an easy city to travel in and, as these three examples of potential cultural attractions illustrate, the city is not well prepared for international tourism. Like much of Brazil, São Paulo has the potential to be a great tourist attraction not just for its food and shopping, which the city is best known for, but also for its cultural attractions. Culture is part of the city’s identity, and Paulistas are proud of their diverse population that has created great art, architecture, crafts, music, and more. When the city better develops tourism and shares that identity with others, the city will certainly benefit from the increased revenue and employment opportunities.

I would love to hear your feedback about tourism development and the economy, your experience traveling in developing countries, or your experience with tourism in Brazil. Please check out my first post about how the Coffee Museum in Santos, Brazil promotes the culture and history of Brazil.

(The third, fifth, and seventh photos are mine, and the others are from Wikipedia Commons).


Salvador lies on a small, roughly triangular peninsula that separates the Bay of All Saints, the largest bay in Brazil, from the Atlantic Ocean. [5] It was first reached by Gaspar de Lemos in 1501, just one year after Cabral's purported discovery of Brazil. [6] During his second voyage for Portugal, the Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci sighted the bay on All Saints' Day (1 November) 1502 and, in honor of the date and his parish church in Florence, he named it the Bay of the Holy Savior of All the Saints. [7] The first European to settle nearby was Diogo Álvares Correia ("Caramuru"), [8] who was shipwrecked off the end of the peninsula in 1509. He lived among the Tupinambá, marrying Guaibimpara and others. In 1531, Martim Afonso de Sousa led an expedition from Mount St Paul (Morro de São Paulo) [9] and, in 1534, Francisco Pereira Coutinho, the first captain of Bahia, established the settlement of Pereira in modern Salvador's Ladeira da Barra neighborhood. Mistreatment of the Tupinambá by the settlers caused them to turn hostile and the Portuguese were forced to flee to Porto Seguro c. 1546 . [10] An attempted restoration of the colony the next year ended in shipwreck and cannibalism. [11]

The present city was established as the fortress of São Salvador da Bahia de Todos os Santos ("Holy Savior of the Bay of All Saints") [12] [n 1] in 1549 by Portuguese settlers under Tomé de Sousa, Brazil's first governor-general. [15] It is one of the oldest cities founded by Europeans in the Americas. [16] From a cliff overlooking the Bay of All Saints, [n 2] it served as Brazil's first capital and quickly became a major port for its slave trade and sugarcane industry. [18] Salvador was long divided into an upper and a lower city, divided by a sharp escarpment some 85 meters (279 ft) high. [19] The upper city formed the administrative, religious, and primary residential districts while the lower city was the commercial center, with a port and market.

In the Roman Catholic Church, Brazil and the rest of the Portuguese Empire were initially administered as part of the Diocese of Funchal in Portugal but, in 1551, Salvador became the seat of the first Roman Catholic diocese erected in Brazil. [20] The first parish church [21] was the mud-and-thatch Church of Our Lady of Help (Igreja da Nossa Senhora da Ajuda) erected by the Jesuits (Society of Jesus), [n 3] which served as the first cathedral of the diocese until the Jesuits finished construction of the original basilica on the Terreiro de Jesus in 1553. [21] [n 4] Its bishop was made independent of the Archdiocese of Lisbon at the request of King Pedro II in 1676 [24] he served as the primate of the Congo and Angola in central Africa until the elevation of the Diocese of Luanda on 13 January 1844 and its bishop still serves as the national primate and premier see (diocese) of Brazil.

In 1572, the Governorate of Brazil was divided into the separate governorates of Bahia in the north and Rio de Janeiro in the south. These were reunited as Brazil six years later, then redivided from 1607 to 1613. By that time, Portugal had become temporarily united with Spain and was ruled from Madrid by its kings. In 1621, King Philip III replaced the Governorate of Brazil with the states of Brazil, still based in Salvador and now controlling the south, and the Maranhão, which was centered on São Luís and controlled what is now northern Brazil. As Spain was then prosecuting a war against the independence of the Dutch, the Dutch East and West India companies tried to conquer Brazil from them. Salvador played a strategically vital role against Dutch Brazil, but was captured and sacked by a West India Company fleet under Jacob Willekens and Piet Hein on 10 May 1624. Johan van Dorth administered the colony before his assassination, freeing its slaves. The city was recaptured by a Luso-Spanish fleet under Fadrique Álvarez de Toledo y Mendoza on 1 May 1625. John Maurice's two subsequent attempts to retake the town in April and May of 1638 were unsuccessful.

In 1763, the colonial administration was removed to Rio de Janeiro and elevated to a viceroyalty. Salvador remained the heart of the Recôncavo, Bahia's rich agricultural maritime district, [25] but was largely outside Brazil's early modernization. The area formed a center of royal Portuguese support against heir apparent Pedro I 's declaration of independence from European Portugal on 7 September 1822. Its elites initially remained loyal to the Portuguese crown [14] while rebels from Cachoeira besieged them for a year until finally receiving Portugal's surrender of the town on 2 July 1823, which is now celebrated as Bahia Independence Day. [26] The local elite was similarly hesitant during Manuel Deodoro da Fonseca's later coup that established the republic in 1889. [14]

Owing to whales' use of the Bay of All Saints as a mating ground, Salvador became a large whaling port in the Southern Hemisphere during the 19th century but the trade had already begun to fall off by the 1870s. [13]

Under the empire and republic periods, however, the town slowly began to industrialize. In 1873, Brazil's first elevator, the powerful hydraulic Elevador Lacerda, was constructed to connect the city's upper and lower towns. [13] Having undergone several upgrades, it continues in use. [27] [28] By the First World War, it was joined by a second elevator [n 5] and Salvador was connected to four railroads: the Bahia & Alagoinhas to Joazeiro, the Bahia Central, the Nazareth Tramway, and a short line to Santo Amaro. [14] Its central districts and the major suburbs of Bomsim and Victoria were served by four streetcar lines, [13] [14] which had begun to electrify. [14] It also served as a port of call for most steamship lines trading between Europe and South America. [14]

In 1985, UNESCO listed the city's Pelourinho neighborhood as a World Heritage Site. [29] [30] In the 1990s, a major municipal project cleaned and restored the neighborhood in order to develop it as the cultural center and heart of the city's tourist trade. The development of the Historical Center, however, involved the forced removal of thousands of working-class residents and now necessitates local and municipal events in order to attract people to the area. [31] The relocated workers, meanwhile, have encountered significant economic hardship in their new homes on the city's periphery, separated from access to work and civic amenities. [32]

In 2007, Porto da Barra Beach in Barra was named by the Guardian as the 3rd-best beach in the world. [33] In 2010, the city hosted the 12th UN Congress on Crime Prevention. [34] The city hosted the 2013 Confederations Cup and was one of the host cities of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil at its Arena Fonte Nova. [35] As part of its preparations for the World Cup, the city reëstablished its public transportation lines as the Salvador Metro.

Climate Edit

Salvador has a trade-wind tropical rainforest climate (Köppen: Af). Temperatures are relatively consistent, showing little variance throughout the course of the year. [36] [37] Salvador's driest months of the year are December and January, when the city receives on average less than 10 cm (4 in) of precipitation. Salvador's wettest months are April, May and June, when at least 20 cm (8 in) of rain falls during each of these three months. [38]

Climate data for Salvador (Bahia)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 37.9
Average high °C (°F) 29.9
Daily mean °C (°F) 26.4
Average low °C (°F) 23.6
Record low °C (°F) 20.0
Average rainfall mm (inches) 82.5
Average rainy days (≥ 1 mm) 10 13 16 17 20 19 20 15 12 10 11 10 173
Average relative humidity (%) 79.4 79.0 79.8 82.2 83.1 82.3 81.5 80.0 79.6 80.7 81.5 81.1 80.9
Mean monthly sunshine hours 245.6 226.4 231.1 189.7 174.3 167.2 181.2 202.6 211.4 228.0 213.6 224.7 2,495.8
Source: Brazilian National Institute of Meteorology (INMET). [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] [43] [44]

In 2010, the city of Salvador was the third-most populous city in Brazil, after São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. [45] The city had 474,827 opposite-sex couples and 1,595 same-sex couples. The population of Salvador was 53.3% female and 46.7% male. [46]

Ethnic groups Edit

According to the 2010 IBGE Census, there were 2,675,000 people residing in the city of Salvador. [47] The census revealed the following self-identification: 1,382,543 persons identify as Pardo (Multiracial) (51.7%) 743,718 as Black (27.8%) 505,645 as White (18.9%) 35,785 as Asian (1.3%) and 7,563 as Amerindian (0.3%). [46]

Salvador's population is the result of 500 years of interracial marriage. The majority of the population has African, European and Native American roots. The African ancestry of the city is from Angola, Benin, Congo, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Senegal and Mozambique. [48]

According to an autosomal DNA study from 2008, the ancestral heritage of the population of Salvador was estimated to be 49.2% African, 36.3% European and 14.5% Native American. [50] The study also analyzed the genetic backgrounds of people by type of surname. Those with surnames with a religious connotation were 53.1% African in genetic ancestry and tended to be in lower economic classes. During the colonial era, it was typical practice for Portuguese priests and missionaries to baptize converted African slaves and Native Americans with surnames of religious connotations. These have been passed down to their descendants.

A 2015 autosomal DNA study found out the following ancestral composition in Salvador: 50.5% of African ancestry, 42.4% of European ancestry and 5.8% of Native American ancestry. [51] [52] The researchers explained they oversampled individuals living in poor environments (page 4). [51]

Another 2015 autosomal DNA found out Salvador to be 50.8% African, 42.9% European and 6.4% Native American. [53]

And another autosomal DNA study, also in 2015, found out Salvador to be: 50.8% European, 40.5% African and 8.7% Native American. [54]

Population growth Edit

Religion Edit

In Salvador, religion is a major contact point between Portuguese and African influences and, in the last 20 years, Brazil's version of a North American-influenced Pentecostalism. [56] Salvador was the seat of the first bishopric in colonial Brazil (established 1551), and the first bishop, Pero Fernandes Sardinha, arrived already in 1552. [57] The Jesuits, led by the Manuel da Nóbrega, also arrived in the 16th century and worked in converting the Indigenous peoples of the region to Roman Catholicism.

Many religious orders came to the city, following its foundation: Franciscans, Benedictines and Carmelites. Subsequently, to them are created the Third Orders, the Brotherhoods, and Fraternities, which were composed mainly of professional and social groups. The most prominent of these orders were the Terceira do Carmo Order and the de São Francisco Order, founded by white men, and the Nossa Senhora do Rosário and São Beneditino Brotherhoods, composed of black men. [58] In many churches maintained by religious men, were housed the Santíssimo Sacramento brotherhoods.

Besides these organizations, the expansion of Catholicism in the city was consolidated through social care work. Santa Casa the Misericórdia was one of the institution that did this kind of work, maintaining hospitals, shelters for the poor and the elderly, as well providing assistance to convicts and to those who would face death penalties. [58] The convents, on their part, were cultural and religious formation centers, offering seminar coursed that often were attended by the lay.

Even with the present evolution, and the growth of Protestantism and other religions in the city, the Catholic faith remains as one of its most distinctive features, drawing a lot of people to its hundreds of churches. Some aspects, like the use of Portuguese in the Masses, the simplification of the liturgy, and the adoption of "pop" religious songs are key factors to the triumph of Catholicism. In the Nossa Senhora do Rosário dos Pretos Church, Masses are held in the Yorubá language, making use of African chants and typical clothes, which attract many people from the African Brazilian communities. [58]

Most enslaved Africans in Bahia were brought from Sub-Saharan Africa, especially the Yoruba-speaking nation (Iorubá or Nagô in Portuguese) from present-day Benin. The enslaved were forced to convert to Roman Catholicism, but their original religion Yorùbá was combined with Roman Catholicism to make the syncretic religion known as, Candomblé, which has survived in spite of prohibitions and persecutions. The enslaved Africans managed to preserve their religion by attributing the names and characteristics of their Yorùbá deities to Catholic saints with similar qualities. Still today all Candomble sessions are conducted in Yoruba, not Portuguese.

These religious entities have been syncretised with some Catholic entities. For instance, Salvador's Feast of Bonfim, celebrated in January, is dedicated to both Our Lord of Bonfim (Jesus Christ) and Oxalá. Another important feast is the Feast de Yemanja every 2 February, on the shores of the borough of Rio Vermelho in

Salvador, on the day the church celebrates Our Lady of the Navigators. 8 December, Immaculate Conception Day for Catholics, is also commonly dedicated to Yemanja' with votive offerings made in the sea throughout the Brazilian coast. [ citation needed ]

Religion Percentage Number
Catholic 51.55% 1,379,252
Protestant 19.59% 524,286
No religion 17.64% 471,928
Spiritist 3.23% 86,484
Umbanda and Candomblé 1.05% 28,019
Jewish 0.04% 1,010

Throughout Brazilian history Salvador has played an important role. Because of its location on Brazil's northeastern coast, the city served as an important link in the Portuguese empire throughout the colonial era, maintaining close commercial ties with Portugal and Portuguese colonies in Africa and Asia. [60]

Salvador remained the preeminent city in Brazil until 1763 when it was replaced as the national capital by Rio de Janeiro. In the last ten years many high-rise office and apartment buildings were constructed, sharing the same blocks with colonial-era housing or commercial buildings. [61]

With its beaches, humid tropical climate, numerous up-to-date shopping malls (The Shopping Iguatemi was the first shopping mall in Northeastern Brazil) and pleasant high-class residential areas, the city has much to offer its residents.

Economically Salvador is one of Brazil's more important cities. Since its founding the city has been one of Brazil's most prominent ports and international trading centers. Boasting a large oil refinery, a petrochemical plant and other important industries, the city has made great strides in reducing its historical dependence on agriculture for its prosperity. [62]

Salvador is the second most popular tourism destination in Brazil, after Rio de Janeiro. [63] Tourism and cultural activity are important generators of employment and income, boosting the arts and the preservation of artistic and cultural heritage.

Chief among the points of interest are its famous Pelourinho (named after the colonial pillories that once stood there) district, its historic churches, [64] and its beaches. Salvador's tourism infrastructure is considered one of the most modern in World, especially in terms of lodging. The city offers accommodation to suit all tastes and standards, from youth hostels to international hotels. Construction is one of the most important activities in the city, and many international (mainly from Spain, Portugal and England) [65] and national developers are investing in the city and in the Bahian littoral zone.

Ford Motor Company has a plant in the Metropolitan Region of Salvador, in the city of Camaçari, assembling the Ford EcoSport, Ford Fiesta, Ford Fiesta Sedan. [66] It was the first Automotive industry in Northeastern Brazil. The industry employs 800 engineers. [67]

JAC Motors will have a plant in the Metropolitan Region of Salvador, in the city of Camaçari, the new industry will result 3,500 direct jobs and 10,000 indirect jobs, the production of 100,000 vehicles by year. [68]

In December 2001, Monsanto Company inaugurated, at the Petrochemical Pole of Camaçari, in Metropolitan Region of Salvador, the first plant of the company designed to produce raw materials for the herbicide Roundup in South America. The investment is equivalent to US$500 million US$350 million were spent in this initial phase. The Camaçari Plant, the largest unit of Monsanto outside of the United States, is also the only Monsanto plant manufacturing raw materials for the Roundup production line. The company started the civil works for the new plant in January 2000. [69]

Economy [70] [71] GDP (in reais) GDP per capita (in reais)
2016 58 bilhões 19.505,84

The Salvador coastline is one of the longest for cities in Brazil. There are 80 km (50 mi) of beaches distributed between the High City and the Low City, from Inema, in the railroad suburb to the Praia do Flamengo, on the other side of town. While the Low City beaches are bordered by the waters of the All Saints Bay (the country's most extensive bay), the High City beaches, from Farol da Barra to Flamengo, are bordered by the Atlantic Ocean. The exception is Porto da Barra Beach, the only High City beach located in the All Saints Bay.

The capital's beaches range from calm inlets, ideal for swimming, sailing, diving and underwater fishing, as well as open sea inlets with strong waves, sought by surfers. There are also beaches surrounded by reefs, forming natural pools of stone, ideal for children.

Interesting places to visit near Salvador include:

  • According to the British newspaper The Guardian, in 2007, Porto da Barra Beach was the third best in the world. [72]
  • The large island of Itaparica in the Bay of All Saints can be visited either by a car-ferry, or a smaller foot-passenger ferry, which leaves from near the Mercado Modelo near the Lacerda Elevator. Highway, or "Line of Coconut" and "Green Line" of towns and cities, with exquisite beaches, north of Salvador heading towards Sergipe state. in the Valença region across the Bay of All Saints – an island that can be reached by ferry from Salvador (2 hours), by plane, or by bus to Valença and then by 'Rapido' ('fast') speedboat or smaller ferry. Morro de São Paulo is formed by five villages of the Tinharé Island.

The city is served by many shopping malls, including Shopping Iguatemi, [73] Salvador Shopping, [74] Shopping Barra, [75] and Shopping Paralela. [76]

Salvador has four parks, green areas protected, as Jardim dos Namorados Park, Costa Azul Park, Park of the city, Park of Pituaçu.

Jardim dos Namorados is located right next to Costa Azul Park and occupies an area of 15 hectares in Pituba, where many families used to spend their vacations in the 1950s. It was inaugurated in 1969, initially as a leisure area. It underwent a complete renovation in the 1990s, with the construction of an amphitheater with room for 500 people, sports courts, playgrounds and parking for cars and tourist buses.

Park of the city is an important preservation area of the Atlantic forest. It was completely renovated in 2001, becoming a modern social, cultural and leisure place. The new park has 720 square meter of green area right in the middle of the city. Among the attractions are Praça das Flores (Flowers square), with more than five thousand ornamental plants and flowers.

Besides its environment, the park has an infrastructure for children, with a special schedule of events taking place every October. [77]

Created by state decree in 1973, Pituaçu Park occupies an area of 450 hectares and is one of the few Brazilian ecological parks located in an urban area. It is surrounded by Atlantic forest, with a good variety of plants and animals. There is also an artificial pond in the park, built in 1906 along with the Pituaçu Dam, whose purpose was to supply water to the city. [78]

There are a number of possible leisure activities, ranging from cycloboats rides on the pond, to a 38 km (24 mi) long cycloway circling the entire reserve. A museum is also located in the park. Espaço Cravo is an outdoor museum with 800 pieces created by Mario Cravo, comprising Totems, winged and three-dimensional figures, as well as drawings and paintings.

Educational institutions Edit

    (UFBA) (Federal University of Bahia) (UCSal) (Catholic University of Salvador)
  • Universidade do Estado da Bahia (UNEB) (Bahia State University)
  • Universidade Salvador (UNIFACS) (Salvador University)
  • Faculdade de Tecnologia e Ciências (FTC) (College of Technology and Science) (IFBA) (Federal Institute of Bahia)
  • Faculdade Ruy Barbosa (FRB) (Ruy Barbosa College) (CIMATEC) (Integrated Campus of Manufacturing and Technology) (FCA) (Castro Alves College) (UNIJORGE) (Jorge Amado University Center) (EBMSP) (Bahian School of Medicine and Public Health)

Primary and secondary schools Edit

Top high schools of the city according to Exame Nacional do Ensino Médio are: [79]

  • Pan American School of Bahia
  • Colégio Marista
  • Colégio São Paulo
  • Colégio Módulo
  • Colégio Oficina
  • Colégio Anchieta
  • Federal Institute of Bahia (IFBA)
  • Social Institute of Bahia (ISBA)
  • Colégio Bernoulli
  • Cândido Portinari Academy
  • Colégio Antônio Vieira
  • Colégio Módulo
  • Military College of Salvador
  • Colégio Sartre COC
  • Colégio Integral
  • Colégio 2 de Julho
  • Colégio Nossa Senhora da Conceição
  • Colégio Gregor Mendel
  • Colégio Nossa Senhora das Mercês
  • Colégio São José

Salvador is one of the most crime-ridden cities in the country. The number of homicides increased 418% from 2000 to 2010. From 1998 to 2008, the number of homicides of youths between the ages of 15 and 24 increased 435.1%. Gun violence in the state of Bahia more than doubled in the period from 2004 to 2014, and the city is in the top ten for gun violence of the 26 state capitals of Brazil. In 2014 the state of Bahia had the most murderers in the country. At the same time, Salvador has one of the lowest rates of suicide in the nation. [80] [81] [82] [83] [84] [85] [86] [87]

Salvador's historical and cultural aspects were inherited by the intermarriage of such ethnic groups as Native-Indian, African and European. This mixture can be seen in the religion, cuisine, cultural manifestations, and custom of Bahia's people. African cultural practices are particularly celebrated. [88]

Literature Edit

Gregório de Mattos, born in Salvador in 1636, was also educated by the Jesuits. He became the most important Baroque poet in colonial Brazil for his religious and satirical works. Father António Vieira was born in Lisbon in 1608, but was raised and educated in the Jesuit school of Salvador and died in the city in 1697. His erudite sermons have earned him the title of best writer of the Portuguese language in the Baroque era. [89]

After the Independence of Brazil (1822), Salvador continued to play an important role in Brazilian literature. Significant 19th century writers associated with the city include Romantic poet Castro Alves (1847–1871) and diplomat Ruy Barbosa (1849–1923). In the 20th century, Bahia-born Jorge Amado (1912–2001), although not born in Salvador, helped popularize the culture of the city around the world in novels such as Jubiabá, Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos, and Tenda dos Milagres, the settings of which are in Salvador. [ citation needed ]

Cuisine Edit

The local cuisine, spicy and based on seafood (shrimp, fish), strongly relies on typically African ingredients and techniques, and is much appreciated throughout Brazil and internationally. The most typical ingredient is azeite-de-dendê, an oil extracted from a palm tree (Elaeis guineensis) brought from West Africa to Brazil during colonial times. [90]

Using the milky coconut juice, they prepared a variety of seafood based dishes, such as Ensopados, Moquecas and Escabeche. The sugar cane bagasse was mixed with molasses and Rapadura, in the creation of coconut desserts like Cocada Branca and Preta. The remaining of the Portuguese Stew sauce was mixed with manioc flour to make a mush, which is a traditional Indian dish. [91] In the markets of Salvador, it is possible to find stands selling typical dishes of the colonial era. In the Sete Portas Market, customers eat Mocotó on Friday nights since the 1940s, when the market was inaugurated. In the restaurants of Mercado Modelo, Sarapatel, stews and several fried dishes are served regularly. In the São Joaquim, Santa Bárbara and São Miguel markets, there are stands selling typical food. They are also sold at stands located on the beaches, specially crab stews and oysters. The restaurants that sell typical dishes are located mostly along the coast and in Pelourinho. They prepare a wide variety of recipes that take palm tree oil.

Traditional dishes include caruru, vatapá, acarajé, bobó-de-camarão, moqueca baiana, and abará. Some of these dishes, like the acarajé and abará, are also used as offerings in Candomblé rituals. But Salvador is not only typical food. Other recipes created by the slaves were the Haussá Rice (rice and jerked beef cooked together), the Munguzá, used as offering to the Candomblé deity Oxalá (who is the father of all deities, according to the religion) pleased the matrons very much. So did the Bolinhos the Fubá, the Cuscuz (cornmeal) and the Mingau (porridge). According to Arany Santana, the African Ipetê (used in the rituals to the deity Oxum) became the Shrimp bobó, and the Akará (honoring the deities Xangô and Iansã) became the world-famous Acarajé. The city has restaurants specialized on international cuisine also. There are also places that serve dishes from other states of Brazil, especially from Minas Gerais and the Northeast region.

Capoeira Edit

Capoeira is a unique mix of dance and martial art of Afro-Brazilian origin, combining agile dance moves with unarmed combat techniques. Capoeira in Portuguese literally means "chicken coop". The capoeira appeared in Quilombo dos Palmares, located in the Captaincy of Pernambuco, and Salvador is considered the home of modern capoeira branches. [92] [93] In the first half of the 20th century, Salvador-born masters Mestre Bimba and Mestre Pastinha founded capoeira schools and helped standardize and popularize the art in Brazil and the world. The practice of Capoeira was banned in 1892, though in 1937 it was made legal. [94] In recent years, Capoeira has become more international and accessible even in Salvador.

Museums Edit

The artistic, cultural and social heritage of Salvador is preserved in museums. From Museu de Arte da Bahia (MAB), which is the oldest in the State, to Museu Náutico, the newest, the first capital of Brazil displays unique elements of history. Museu de Arte da Bahia has paintings, Chinese porcelain, furniture and sacred images from the 17th and 18th centuries. Museu Costa Pinto has privately owned items such as, pieces of art, crystal objects, and furniture from the 18th and 19th centuries. Museu da Cidade, where many items that help to preserve the heritage of old Salvador are kept. The Museum of Modern Art of Bahia, established in 1960, is located at a historic site on the Bay of All Saints, Solar da União.

Some churches and monasteries also have museums located in their premises. Examples of this are the Carmo da Misericórdia and São Bento museums. After the forts were renovated, Museu Náutico was established in the Forte de Santo Antonio da Barra (Farol da Barra) and the Museum of Communication in Forte São Diogo. Other important museums located in Salvador are: Museu do Cacau, State Museum of Geology, Museu tempostal, Solar do Ferrão, Museu de Arte Antiga e Popular Henriqueta M Catharino, Museu Eugênio Teixeira Leal, Museu Rodin Bahia, and Museu das Portas do Carmo.

Public art Edit

The streets of Salvador are decorated with numerous murals and sculptures, many of which have been produced by the resident artist Bel Borba, a native of the city. [95]

Carnival Edit

The Bahian Carnival (Portuguese: Carnaval) is the largest party on the planet. [96] [97] Its dimensions are gigantic. For an entire week, almost 4 million people celebrate throughout 25 kilometers (16 mi) of streets, avenues, and squares. The direct organization of the party involves the participation of over 100,000 people [98] and Salvador receives an average of over 800,000 visitors. The affair is heavily policed and covered. Streets are patrolled by lines of police in single file and guarded by seated teams of five or six officers. [99] In 2010, coverage was provided by 4,446 journalists from the local, national, and international press and broadcast to 135 countries through 65 radio stations, 75 magazines, 139 video productions, 97 newspapers (including 21 international papers), 14 tv stations, and 168 websites. [100]

The party official begins when Rei Momo ("King Momo", the King of Carnival) is handed the key to the city in the morning of the Thursday before Mardi Gras. In the Campo Grande, streets are lined with grandstands (camarotes). 60-foot-long trucks known as Trios Eléctricos carry a kick line of scantily-clad dancers along with the city's best-loved performers, such as Ivete Sangalo, Daniela Mercury, Cláudia Leitte, Chiclete com Banana, and Carlinhos Brown. [101] Much of the music played is axé or samba-reggae. Groups known as blocos participate, with the most famous being the blocos afros such as Malé Debalé, Olodum, and Filhos de Gandhi.

The parades are organized into separate circuits. The Osmar Circuit, the oldest, goes from Campo Grande to Castro Alves Square. The Downtown Circuit runs through downtown and Pelourinho. The Dodô Circuit goes from Farol da Barra to Ondina along the coast. Since the Osmar Circuit is the oldest, it is where the event's most traditional groups parade. In Dodô, where the artist box seats are located, the party becomes lively toward the end of the afternoon and continues until morning.

Music Edit

Black Bahia Funk Balls play more American music—including English music—than their counterparts in Rio, while Rio's music is considered inferior and less played. [ citation needed ] The local dancehalls which host the balls are also distinct. [102]

Libraries Edit

The first books that arrived in Salvador, were brought by the Jesuits, who came with Tomé de Souza. [103] The first libraries or bookstores that appeared were under the control of the religious missionaries and were mostly composed of books on religion.

Handcrafts Edit

The handcraft legacy of Bahia using only raw materials (straw, leather, clay, wood, seashells and beads), the most rudimentary crafts are reasonably inexpensive. Other pieces are created with the use of metals like gold, silver, copper and brass. The most sophisticated ones are ornamented with precious and semi-precious gems. The craftsmen and women generally choose religion as the main theme of their work.

They portray the images of Catholic saints and Candomble deities on their pieces. The good luck charms such as the clenched fist, the four-leaf clover, the garlic and the famous Bonfim ribbons express the city's religious syncretism. Nature is also portrayed on these pieces, reflecting the local wildlife. Music appears in the atabaque drums, the rain sticks, the water drums and the famous berimbau, along with other typical instruments. [104]

Salvador holds an international reputation as a city where musical instruments that produce unique sounds are made. These instruments are frequently used by world-famous artists in their recording sessions. The main handcrafts production in Salvador is located in Mercado Modelo, which is the biggest handcraft center in Latin America. [105]

Pieces can also be purchased at Instituto de Artesanato de Mauá and at Instituto do Patrimônio Artístico e Cultural (IPAC). These are organizations that promote typical art in Bahia.

Airport Edit

Deputado Luís Eduardo Magalhães International Airport has an area of 6,900 square metres (74,271 sq ft) between sand dunes and native vegetation. It is 28 km (17 mi) north of Central Salvador, and the road to the airport has already become one of the city's main scenic attractions. [106]

Port Edit

With cargo volume that grows every year with the economic growth of the state, the Port of Salvador, located in the Bahia de Todos os Santos, is the port with the most movement of containers of the North/Northeast and the second-leading fruit exporter in Brazil.

Metro Edit

Salvador Metro System is in operation since 2014, and its first stage was ready since March 2008, between Lapa and Aceso Norte Stations, and in 2009, it was ready the metro stations between Estação Accesso Norte and Pirajá. In December 2014, it opened as far as Retiro. In 2018, the system had 32 km (20 mi) and 20 stations and linked with the bus system.

The main shareholders in Metro Salvador are the Spanish companies Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, Dimetronic, and ICF. It is expected that Metro Salvador will invest US$150 million in rolling stock and signalling and telecommunications equipment. The contract covers the first 11.9 km (7.4 mi) line from Pirajá to Lapa, which is due to open in 2003. The project is also financed by a US$150 million World Bank loan and contributions from the federal, Bahia state, and Salvador city governments. [107]

The system was one of the actions for urban mobility in preparation for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The connection of Line 2 with Line 1 of Salvador Metro helps to connect the International Airport to Downtown Salvador and the Fonte Nova Stadium. The new Line 2 of Salvador Metro integrates the metro stations of the Rótula do Abacaxi and the beach city of Lauro de Freitas in the metropolitan area, passing through the airport at the Airport metro station. [108]

Monorail Edit

The two line SkyRail Bahia monorail network is due to open in 2022. [109]

Highways Edit

The BR-101 and BR-116 federal highways cross Bahia from north to south, connecting Salvador to the rest of the country. At the Feira de Santana junction, take the BR-324 state highway. The capital of Bahia is served by several coach companies from almost every Brazilian state. BR-242, starting at São Roque do Paraguaçu (transversal direction), is linked to BR-116, bound to the middle–west region. Among the state highways stands BA-099, which makes connection to the north coast and BA-001, which makes connection to the south of Bahia. Buses provide direct service to most major Brazilian cities, including Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, and Brasília, as well as regional destinations. In 2007, the city had 586,951 vehicles, the largest number of the Northern and Northeastern Brazil. [110] Salvador has 2,500 public buses, and 2 million people are transported every day. [111]

The bus station (rodoviária) is in Iguatemi, with direct buses to larger cities in the country and to many other destinations in the state. On the second floor are the counters for the different bus companies, and on the first floor is a small supermarket and a 24 h left luggage. Across the street is a large shopping center, Iguatemi, with a food court, connected by a pedestrian crossing. [112]

Four paved highways connect the city to the national highway system. Running north from the Farol (lighthouse) de Itapoã are hundreds of kilometres of beaches. The beaches are accessible by the BA-099 highway or (Line of Coconut and Green Line), a (toll) road, which is kept in excellent condition, running parallel to the coast, with access roads leading off to the coast itself. The road runs along dunes of snow-white sand, and the coast itself is an almost unbroken line of coconut palms. The communities along the coast range from fishing villages to Praia do Forte.

Public transportation statistics Edit

The average amount of time people spend commuting with public transit in Salvador, such as to and from work, on a weekday is 94 min, and 33% of public transit riders ride for more than 2 h every day. The average amount of time people wait at a stop or station for public transit is 33 min, and 70% of riders wait for over 20 mib on average every day. The average distance that people usually ride in a single trip with public transit is 8 km, and 18% travel for over 12 km in a single trip. [114]

Although the creation of Salvador was masterminded by the Kingdom of Portugal and its project conducted by the Portuguese engineer Luís Dias (who was responsible for the city's original design), the continuous growth of the capital through the decades was completely spontaneous. [ citation needed ] The walls of the city-fortress could not hold the expansion of the city, towards the Carmo and the area where now stands Castro Alves Square. At the time of its foundation, Salvador had only two squares and the first neighborhood ever built here was the Historic City Center. Pelourinho and Carmo came subsequently, created as a consequence of the growing need of space that the religious orders had. With the rapid expansion, the neighborhoods grew and many of them were clustered in the same area, so today there are not accurate records as to their exact number. For urban management purposes, the city is currently divided on 17 political-administrative zones. However, due to their very cultural relevance and to postal conveniences, the importance of the neighborhoods of Salvador remains intact.

Salvador is divided into a number of distinct neighborhoods, with the most well known districts being Pelourinho, Comércio, and Old Downtown, all located in West Zone. Barra, with its Farol da Barra, beaches and which is where one of the Carnival circuits begins, Barra is home of the Portuguese Hospital and Spanish Hospital, the neighborhood is located in South Zone. Vitória, a neighborhood with many high rise buildings, is located in South Zone. Campo Grande, with its Dois de Julho Square and the monument to Bahia's independence, is also located in South Zone, as is Graça, an important residential area. Ondina, with Salvador's Zoobotanical Garden and the site where the Barra-Ondina Carnival circuit ends, the neighborhood is home of the Spanish Club, is also a neighborhood in the South Zone.

Itaigara, Pituba, Horto Florestal, Caminho das Árvores, Loteamento Aquárius, Brotas, Stiep, Costa Azul, Armação, Jaguaribe and Stella Maris are the wealthiest and the New Downtown neighborhoods in the East Zone and the city. Rio Vermelho, a neighborhood with a rich architectural history and numerous restaurants and bars, is located in the South Zone. Itapoã, known throughout Brazil as the home of Vinicius de Moraes and for being the setting of the song "Tarde em Itapoã", is located in East Zone.

The Northwest area of the city in along the Bay of All Saints, also known as Cidade Baixa ("Lower city"), contains the impoverished suburban neighborhoods of Periperi, Paripe, Lobato, Liberdade, Nova Esperança, and Calçada. The neighborhood of Liberdade (Liberty) has the largest proportion of Afro-Brazilians of Salvador and Brazil. [115]

Pelourinho Edit

The Historic Center of Salvador was designated in 1985 a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. [29] The city represents a fine example the Portuguese urbanism from the middle of the 16th century with its higher administrative town and its lower commercial town, and a large portion of the city has retained the old character of its streets and colourful houses.

As the first capital of Portuguese America, Salvador cultivated slave labor and had its pillories ("pelourinhos") installed in open places like the Terreiro de Jesus and the squares know today as Tomé de Sousa and Castro Alves. The pillories were a symbol of authority and justice for some and of lashings and injustice for the majority. [116] The one erected for a short time in what is now the Historical Center, and later moved to what is now the Praça da Piedade (Square of Piety), ended up lending its name to the historical and architectural complex of Pelourinho, part of the city's upper town.

Since 1992, the Pelourinho neighborhood has been subject to a nearly US$100 million "restoration" that has led to the rebuilding of hundreds of buildings' façades and the expulsion of the vast majority of the neighborhood's Afro-descendent population. This process has given rise to substantial political debate in the State of Bahia, since the Pelourinho's former residents have been for the most part excluded from the renovation's economic benefits (reaped by a few). [117] A major restoration effort resulted in making the area a tourist attraction. [118]

Salvador's considerable wealth and status during colonial times (as capital of the colony during 250 years and which gave rise to the Pelourinho) is reflected in the magnificence of its colonial palaces, churches and convents, most of them dating from the 17th and 18th centuries. These include:

    : Former Jesuit church of the city, built in the second half of the 17th century. Fine example of Mannerist architecture and decoration. : Franciscan convent and church dating from the first half of the 18th century is another fine example of the Portuguese colonial architecture. The Baroque decoration of the church is among the finest in Brazil. : Rococo church with Neoclassical inner decoration. The image of Nosso Senhor do Bonfim is the most venerated in the city, and the Feast of Our Lord of Good Ending (Festa de Nosso Senhor do Bonfim) in January is the most important in the city after Carnival. (Model Market): In 1861, at the Cayrú Square, the Customs Building was constructed, with a rotunda (large circular room with a domed ceiling) at the back end, where ships anchored to unload their merchandise. (Elevador Lacerda): Inaugurated in 1873, this elevator was planned and built by the businessman Antônio Francisco de Lacerda, The four elevator cages connect the 72 metres (236 ft) between the Thomé de Souza Square in the upper city, and the Cayru Square in the lower city. In each run, which lasts for 22 seconds, the elevator transports 128 persons, 24 hours a day.

Salvador provides visitors and residents with various sport activities. The Fonte Nova Arena, also known as Estádio Octávio Mangabeira is a football stadium inaugurated on 28 January 1951 in Salvador, Bahia, with a maximum capacity of 66,080 people. The stadium has now been replaced with a new stadium named Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova with a capacity of 56,000 people. This stadium hosted matches of 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup and the subsequent 2014 FIFA World Cup, as well as the football competition in the 2016 Summer Olympics. The stadium is owned by the Bahia government, and is the home ground of Esporte Clube Bahia. Its formal name honors Octávio Cavalcanti Mangabeira, a civil engineer, journalist, and former Bahia state governor from 1947 to 1954. The stadium is nicknamed Fonte Nova, because it is located at Ladeira das Fontes das Pedras. The stadium was in 2007 closed due to an accident, and the E.C. Bahia home matches now happen in another stadium, in Pituaçu.

Esporte Clube Bahia and Esporte Clube Vitória are Salvador's main football teams. Bahia has won 2 national titles, the Taça Brasil in 1959 and the Brazilian League in 1988, while Vitória was a runner up in the Brazilian league in 1993 and the Copa do Brasil in 2010. EC Ypiranga is the city's third team with 10 titles of the Campeonato Baiano.

Salvador has two large green areas for the practice of golf. Cajazeiras Golf and Country Club has an 18-hole course, instructors, caddies and equipment for rent. Itapuã Golf club, located in the area of the Sofitel Hotel, has a 9-hole course, equipment store, caddies and clubs for rent. Tennis is very popular among Salvador's elites, with a great number of players and tournaments in the city's private clubs. Brasil Open, the country's most important tournament happens every year in Bahia. [ citation needed ]

During the last decades, volleyball has grown steadily in Salvador, especially after the gold medal won by Brazil in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. [ citation needed ] The most important tournaments in Bahia are the State Championship, the State League tournament and the Primavera Games, and the main teams are Associação Atlética da Bahia, Bahiano de Tênis, and Clube the Regatas Itapagipe. There are also beach volleyball events. Salvador has housed many international tournaments. Federação Bahina de Voleibol (the state league) can inform the schedule of tournaments. Bowling is practiced both by teenagers and adults in Salvador. Boliche do Aeroclube and Space Bowling are equipped with automatic lanes as well as a complete bar infrastructure.

Bahia's basketball league exists since 1993 and has 57 teams. The sport is very popular in the city of Salvador, especially among students. [119] There are several courts scattered across the city, where is possible to play for free, like the one located at Bahia Sol square, where people play. [120] There are also several gymnasiums, in clubs like Bahiano de Tênis and Associação Atlética and the Antonio Balbino Gymnasiums (popularly known as "Balbininho"), which is an arena that can hold up to 7,000 people.

Todos os Santos Bay and Salvador's climatic conditions are ideal for competition and recreational sailing. The city is equipped with good infrastructure for practice of sailing, such as rental and sale of dock space, boat maintenance, restaurants, snack bar, convenience stores, nautical products stores, boat rental agencies, VHF and SSB communication systems, events, and total assistance to crews. [121] The large number of sailing events organized by clubs and syndicates, like oceanic races and typical boats (wooden fishing boats and canoes) races, demonstrates the sport's growing force. Currently, Salvador has a national racing schedule with dozens of events, also receiving the Mini Transat 6.50 and Les Illes du Soleil races. [121]

Rowing boat races started in the city more than a hundred years ago. [122] It was originally practiced by young men from traditional families, who spent their summer vacations there. The sport is a leisure option in Cidade Baixa (the lower part of the city). Esporte Clube Vitória and Clube São Salvador were the pioneers in the sport. Nowadays, these two entities and also Clube de Regatas Itapagipe lead the competitions that take place in the city. With the recent renovation of the Dique do Tororó area, Salvador received new lanes for the practice of the sport.

Festivals in Brazil

Carnaval is the most important festival in Brazil, but there are other parties, too, from saints’ days to celebrations based around elections or the World Cup.


When Carnaval comes, the country gets down to some of the most serious partying in the world. A Caribbean carnival might prepare you a little, but what happens in Brazil is more spectacular, goes on longer and is on a far larger scale. Every place in Brazil, large or small, has some form of Carnaval, and in three places especially – Rio, Salvador and Olinda, just outside Recife – Carnaval has become a mass event, involving seemingly the entire populations of the cities and drawing visitors from all over the world.

When exactly Carnaval begins depends on the ecclesiastical calendar: it starts at midnight of the Friday before Ash Wednesday and ends on the Wednesday night, though effectively people start partying on Friday afternoon – over four days of continuous, determined celebration. It usually happens in the middle of February, although very occasionally it can be early March. But in effect, the entire period from Christmas is a kind of run-up to Carnaval. People start working on costumes, songs are composed and rehearsals staged in school playgrounds and backyards, so that Carnaval comes as a culmination rather than a sudden burst of excitement and colour.

During the couple of weekends immediately before Carnaval proper, there are carnival balls (bailes carnavalescos), which get pretty wild. Don’t expect to find many things open or to get much done in the week before Carnaval, or the week after it, when the country takes a few days off to shake off its enormous collective hangover. During Carnaval itself, stores open briefly on Monday and Tuesday mornings, but banks and offices stay closed. Domestic airlines, local and inter-city buses run a Sunday service during the period.

The most familiar and most spectacular Carnaval is in Rio, dominated by samba and the parade of samba schools down the enormous concrete expanse of the gloriously named Sambódromo. One of the world’s great sights, and televised live to the whole country, Rio’s Carnaval has its critics. It is certainly less participatory than Olinda or Salvador, with people crammed into grandstands watching, rather than down following the schools.

Salvador is, in many ways, the antithesis of Rio, with several focuses around the old city centre: the parade is only one of a number of things going on, and people follow parading schools and the trio elétrico, groups playing on top of trucks wired for sound. Samba is only one of several types of music being played indeed, if it’s music you’re interested in, Salvador is the best place to hear and see it.

Olinda, in a magical colonial setting just outside Recife, has a character all its own, less frantic than Rio and Salvador musically, it’s dominated by frevo, the fast, whirling beat of Pernambuco, and is in some ways the most distinctive visually, with its bonecos, large papier-mâché figures that are the centrepiece of the Olinda street parades.

Some places you would expect to be large enough to have an impressive Carnaval are in fact notoriously bad at it: cities in this category are São Paulo, Brasília and Belo Horizonte. On the other hand, there are also places that have much better Carnavals than you would imagine: the one in Belém is very distinctive, with the Amazonian food and rhythms of the carimbó, and Fortaleza also has a good reputation. The South, usually written off by most people as far as Carnaval is concerned, has major events in Florianópolis, primarily aimed at attracting Argentine and São Paulo tourists, and the smaller but more distinctive Carnaval in Laguna. For full details of the events, music and happenings at each of the main Carnavals, see under the relevant sections of the Guide.

Other festivals

The third week in June has festas juninas, geared mainly towards children, who dress up in straw hats and checked shirts and release paper balloons with candles attached (to provide the hot air), causing anything from a fright to a major conflagration when they land.

Elections and the World Cup are usually excuses for impromptu celebrations, while official celebrations, with military parades and patriotic speeches, take place on September 7 (Independence Day) and November 15, the anniversary of the declaration of the Republic.

In towns and rural areas, you may well stumble across a dia de festa, the day of the local patron saint, a very simple event in which the image of the saint is paraded through the town, with a band and firecrackers, a thanksgiving Mass is celebrated, and then everyone turns to the secular pleasures of the fair, the market and the bottle. In Belém, this tradition reaches its zenith in the annual Cirio on the second Sunday of October, when crowds of over a million follow the procession of the image of Nossa Senhora de Nazaré, but most festas are small-scale, small-town events.

In recent years, many towns have created new festivals, usually glorified industrial fairs or agricultural shows. Often these events are named after the local area’s most important product, such as the Festa Nacional do Frango e do Peru (chickens and turkeys) in Chapecó. Occasionally, these local government creations can be worth attending as some promote local popular culture as well as industry. One of the best is Pomerode’s annual Festa Pomerana, which takes place in the first half of January and has done much to encourage the promotion of local German traditions.

Football in Brazil

Going to a football match in Brazil is something even those bored by the game will enjoy as spectacle: the stadiums are sights in themselves and big matches are watched behind a screen of tickertape and waving flags, huge banners, massed drums, fireworks and firecrackers, to the chants, roars and whistling of the world’s most passionate football supporters.

Brazil’s major teams are concentrated in Rio and São Paulo. In Rio, Flamengo is the best-supported team in the country, and its distinctive shirt of red and black hoops is seen everywhere. Its clashes with perennial Rio rival Fluminense (maroon, green and white stripes) is one of the most intense matches in Brazilian club football, rivalled only by the games between São Paulo’s two leading teams, São Paulo (white with red and black hoops) and Coríntians (white). In Rio, Botafogo (black and white stripes with the famous white-star badge) and Vasco (white with black diagonal stripe) vie with Fla-Flu for dominance, while Palmeiras (green) and Santos (white) make up the big four in São Paulo. The only teams that consistently live with the best of Rio and São Paulo are Internacional (red) and Grêmio (blue, white and black stripes) from Porto Alegre, and Atlético Mineiro (white) and Cruzeiro (dark blue) from Belo Horizonte.

Brazilian stadiums tend to be enormous, concrete, and with a few exceptions rather dingy and lacking in character: they are rarely full save for clássicos, matches between major teams, and rely on the supporters rather than their architecture for colour and feeling. Most pitches are separated from supporters by a wide running track and sometimes even a moat, which puts the play further from the terraces than British fans will be used to. But some stadiums are worth going out of your way for: the Maracanã in Rio, it goes without saying, but also the beautiful Art Deco Pacaembú in São Paulo. No football fan should visit Rio without leaving a morning for the excellent tour of the Maracanã, or miss the superb new Museu de Futbol when in São Paulo.

Tickets are very cheap by European standards good seats at a clássico will cost no more than R$50, but an ordinary match will be half that or less – the issue is availability rather than price. For clássicos, hotels often have packages that include transport, tickets and a guide for around R$100 all in, an expensive way of doing it but often the only practical option if you can’t get a ticket a few days in advance. For ordinary matches, you can almost always turn up half an hour beforehand and look for the bilheteria, the ticket office, which usually only takes cash. All stadiums are two-deckers, most are now all-seaters but a few still have terracing on the lower deck: upper-deck seats are arquibancada, lower-deck geral. There is not as much of a problem with crowd violence in Brazil as in many European countries, but don’t wear a Brazilian club shirt just to be on the safe side: non-Brazilian shirts are no problem (except for Argentinian ones – the two countries don’t get on well in footballing terms), and Brazilian fans are extremely friendly to foreigners. December is the off season otherwise, a mixture of state and national championships ensures constant football.

Brazil Environment

In Brazil, the environment consists of seven biomes: the Amazon, the Cerrado, the Caatinga, the Pantanal, the Atlantic Forest, the Pampa – or Southern Fields – and the Coastal.

Iguazu Falls is one of the most breathtaking natural wonders in Brazil. After seeing Iguazu Falls, Elenor Roosevelt said, “it makes our Niagara Falls look like a kitchen faucet.” The mighty Iguazu Falls often end up being the highlight of many trips to Brazil. It’s hard to compete with around 275 waterfalls that span approximately 2 miles in length, falling all at once. To see the Iguazu Falls in their full glory, visit during the rainy season – December to February, this is when there is usually most water passing over the falls.

The Falls are shared between Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil. A visitor could visit both sides to get the full perspective of Iguazu Falls. On the Brazilian side, you can take a boat ride right up to the base of the waterfalls.

The Federative Republic of Brazil is simultaneously South America’s largest country (by both population and geographical size) as well as one of its most diverse and fascinating. It is filled to the brim with intriguing people, plants and animals as well as liberal doses of history, religion, culture and sporting greatness.

The most densely populated parts of Brazil are in the south-central regions, which include major urban conglomerates like Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

Because of the rapid growth experienced by this country in terms of urban development, industrialisation and population at the beginning of the 21st century, Brazil is facing a number of social, environmental and political challenges.

Classic view of iconic sidewalk pattern, palm trees, and bright blue sky at Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

However, it is also because of this growth that it is doing so well in terms of its economy. In fact, it is one of the world’s largest and most significant economies. It is also the only Portuguese-speaking country in both North and South America.

This Portuguese heritage dates back to the 1700’s, when Brazil was first colonised by this European nation. During its rich and complex history, slavery was a major part of the Brazilian heritage, although this was never formally recorded in the annals of history. Slaves were brought to the country across the Pacific Ocean from Africa. Therefore, there is also a large proportion of Brazilian inhabitants that have an African heritage.

Others of European and Asian descent immigrated to Brazil in the 19th century. These ones were mainly from Japan, Poland, Spain, Italy and Germany. Therefore, this country is now a melting pot of ethnic and cultural diversity. Despite such diversity, Brazil maintains strong national pride and religious devotion. The vast majority, approximately 75%, of the population is Roman Catholic, while the rest are largely Christian or subscribe to the various African-based beliefs.

Brazil enjoys an extensive coastline that measures almost 7 500 kilometres (or more than 4 600 miles). Its other borders are made up of Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. In fact, Ecuador and Chile are the only South American countries with which Brazil does not share its borders.

Brazil enjoys an extensive coastline that measures almost 7 500 kilometres (or more than 4 600 miles). Its other borders are made up of Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. In fact, Ecuador and Chile are the only South American countries with which Brazil does not share its borders

There are various groups of islands that also belong to Brazil, such as Saint Peter, Trindade and Fernando de Noronha, amongst others. Its entire area measures exactly 8 514 876.599 square kilometres or 3 287 612 square miles.

Apart from being geographically large, Brazil is also naturally diverse. It comprises dense rain forests and jungles, expanses of coastline, towering mountains, oceanic archipelagos (or clusters of islands), rivers, scrublands and rolling plains. Because of such a variation in habitats available to plants and animals, Brazil boasts a rich array of fauna and flora.

Copon Building, "S" shape, a landmark in the center of São Paulo city, Brazil .

In fact, scientists estimate that this South American country is home to about four million different species. Particularly extensive are this country’s populations of birds and amphibians.

In terms of the local culture, Brazil continues to be influenced by the traditions and customs of the Portuguese. This is evident in the architecture, music, literature, cuisine, dance, religion and theatre of the country.

Being home to the Amazon Rainforest, many other such natural wonders, cultural attractions and historical remnants makes Brazil a fascinating tourist destination and home. As the Host Country for the 2016 Summer Olympics, it is guaranteed an influx of travellers and football fans from around the world.

Pomerode: The Most German Town In Brazil

About thirty kilometers to the north of Blumenau, a city in Brazil, lies the town of Pomerode, so named because its founders came from Pomerania, a region on the southern shore of the Baltic Sea, split between Germany and Poland. The town was founded more than 150 years ago, yet even today, ninety percent of the town’s 25,000 inhabitants speak German with a distinct 19th century Pommersch accent.

Pomerode is probably one of the “most German towns in Brazil.” This is immediately apparent as soon as one enters the town through the arched gateway. Every cottage and building is built in the traditional German style characterized by exposed brick within a frame of exposed wood, that recalls a rural German setting from the 1900s.

Pomerode isn’t the only German town in Brazil. There are a lot of Germans living in the southern part of the country. Their ancestors had left home in successive waves of emigration beginning in 1824 and accelerating after the failed revolutions of 1848, settling in the United States and in South American countries such as Brazil. Immigration continued well into the 20th century, with another major influx occurring immediately after the First World War. Between 1824 and 1969, around 250,000 Germans emigrated to Brazil, where they constitute the fourth largest immigrant community to settle in the country, after the Portuguese, Italians and Spaniards.

Even though the immigration of Germans to Brazil was small compared to the numbers who went to the United States, it had a notable impact on the ethnic composition of the country, particularly in the south of the country. By the end of the 19th century, 13.3% of the population in Rio Grande do Sul was of German descent, and that figure rose to 21.6% in 1950.

In the book “The Monroe Doctrine”, T B Edgington explained the growth phenomenon:

The natural increase of the German population in southern Brazil is marvelous. As a rule they rear from ten to fifteen children in each family. Blumenau, a colony which was settled by the Germans over fifty years ago, more than doubles itself every ten years. Southern Brazil is now called ‘Greater Germany’, and the Germans exercise there a commercial and financial supremacy.

For a good part of the 20th century, the Brazilian government did not encourage people to speak German. During the days of Getúlio Vargas's presidency, speaking German was actively repressed and prohibited. But over the years the government has become more tolerant of Brazilian Germans, acknowledging their existence and embracing the culture of the German population. Today, German is part of the curriculum in local schools.

Three days in the city that houses the largest hydro power plant in production and one of the new seven natural wonders of the world.

São Roque de Minas

Gateway to the Park, São Roque de Minas holds the secret of the famous cheese from Serra da Canastra.

Nova Olinda

Municipality located amidst archeological sites and fossils from all over the world.


Municipality of Espírito Santo with a strong indigenous presence on its lands.