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SOUTH AMERICA
 
         
 
 

 
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
     
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
                                             
 
BRAZIL             South America Enquiry Form
   
     
 
                                                           

The land of samba, carnival, sun, sea and cachucha, Brazil beckons! A tradition that the whole country revels in, the annual Carnival in Rio de Janeiro is celebrated by young and old. Those exotic beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana, known to millions in song come alive each year to the sounds and sights that enchant all. Another famous beach, Botafogo, lays in the shadow of the Sugarloaf Mountain at the entrance to Guanabara Bay.

The watchful eyes of the enormous statue of Christ the Redeemer on the heights of Corcovado keep close watch on Rio’s residents as they go about their fun filled lives.

Brazil holiday
                                                           

Brazil is more than just Rio de Janeiro however and in the north, Manaus a port city on the Amazon River, is your gateway to the extensive jungles of South America. Long portrayed as a savage and brutal land, the jungle is indeed inhabited by wild creatures. Jet-black panthers, giant anacondas, plate-sized spiders, razor-toothed piranhas in the rivers, beautiful rainbow-hued macaws and parrots, impressive eagles all share the jungle. Tall ancient trees, exotic and rare orchids, a wealth of plant life largely until recently unknown to the Western World form part of this endangered habit.

Exquisite rare gems from deep-green emeralds, sky-blue sapphires and diamonds of all hues are found around this great nation. The capital, Brasilia, is a city purpose-built in the centre of the country. This modern city epitomizes the feel of Brazil, where the cultures of long ago settlers merge with those of the modern day inhabitants. 

                                                           
Brazil holiday
 

MAJOR REGIONS & CITIES                  Back to top

Rio de Janeiro                              

Sao Paulo

Salvador da Bahia                        

The Amazon

  
                                                           

WEATHER    Back to top

There are five climatic regions in Brazil: equatorial, tropical, semi-arid, highland tropical and subtropical. The seasons are the reverse of those in Europe and the United States. Cities such as Sao Paulo and Brasilia, on the plateau, have a mild climate with temperatures averaging 66°F (19°C). Rio de Janeiro, Recife, Natal and Salvador on the coast have warmer climates balanced by the Trade Winds. Rio, for example, has an average temperature of around 80°F (26°C) which will climb to over 100°F (high 30s) during the summer months. In the southern Brazilian cities of Porto Alegre and Curitiba, the subtropical climate is similar to parts of the US and Europe, with frosts occurring in the winter months (July to August) when temperatures can fall below freezing. Summers are hot, however. Despite the popular image of the Amazon as a region of blistering heat, temperatures rarely rise above 90°F (32°C), and days are generally warm, wet and humid. The region has two seasons: a rainy season (November to May) and not-so-rainy season (June to October).

Rio de Janeiro

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Rainfall (mm)

135

124

134

109

77

51

45

45

62

82

100

137

Rainfall (inches)

5.3

4.9

5.3

4.3

3.1

2.0

1.8

1.8

2.4

3.2

3.9

5.4

Min Temp (°C)

23

23

23

22

20

19

18

19

19

20

21

22

Max Temp (°C)

29

30

29

28

26

25

25

26

25

26

27

29

Min Temp (°F)

74

74

74

71

69

66

65

66

67

68

70

72

Max Temp (°F)

85

86

85

82

79

77

77

78

77

79

81

83


Sao Paulo

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Rainfall (mm)

241

203

142

58

43

38

28

36

58

150

122

198

Rainfall (inches)

9.5

7.9

5.6

2.3

1.7

1.5

1.1

1.4

2.3

5.9

4.8

7.8

Min Temp (°C)

19

19

19

17

15

13

13

13

14

16

17

18

Max Temp (°C)

27

28

27

25

23

21

21

22

22

25

25

26

Min Temp (°F)

67

67

66

63

59

56

55

56

57

60

63

65

Max Temp (°F)

81

83

81

77

74

71

71

73

73

77

78

79

                                                           
GOOD TO KNOW    Back to top

Time: Brazil spans four time zones: Rio and Sao Paulo: GMT -2 (GMT -3 April to October); Brasilia and Belém: GMT -3 (GMT -2 October to March); GMT -4 in the West.

Electricity: Brazil has a variety of electrical voltages, sometimes within the same city; the better hotels offer 220 volts. If not, transformers are available in electrical stores. Outlets often accept a variety of plug types but the two-pin type is standard.

Money: The Brazilian monetary unit is the real (BRL), plural reais. There are 100 centavos to the real and notes come in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 50 and BRL100. The US dollar is also welcome in most tourist establishments. In the main cities foreign currencies and travellers cheques can be exchanged at banks or cambios. There is an extensive network of ATMs in the country and most major international credit cards are accepted.

Approximate Currency Exchange Rates

BRL 1.00 =

USD 0.46

GBP 0.25

CAD 0.52

AUD 0.61

ZAR 3.26

EUR 0.36

NZD 0.75

Note: These rates are not updated daily and should be used as a guideline only. Please go to our Currency Converter for the latest rates.

Brazil holiday
Brazil holiday


Language: The spoken language in Brazil is Portuguese; however Spanish and English are also widely used in the cities.

Passport/Visa Note: All visitors require passports that are valid for at least the period of intended stay in Brazil. Sufficient funds to cover their stay in Brazil, as well as a return or onward ticket and documentation required for further travel is necessary for all travellers.

Health: A yellow fever vaccination is recommended for those travelling to rural areas and parts of Sao Paulo and Parana. Those travelling from infected areas require a yellow fever certificate. Typhoid and Hepatitis A immunisation is also recommended. Mosquito-borne diseases like dengue fever and malaria are prevalent and insect protection is strongly advised. Malaria exists below 2,953ft (900m) in most rural areas, and outbreaks of Dengue fever have occurred recently (mid-2006). Chagas disease, caused by a parasite, is widespread in rural areas of Brazil. Until recently infection was believed to be from insect bites only, but an outbreak in March 2005 that has caused three deaths in Santa Catarina was traced to the ingestion of sugar cane juice contaminated with the faeces of vector insects, and in the north east further cases were linked to the ingestion of juice from the acai fruit; visitors are advised to seek medical advice urgently if any of the symptoms occur (fever, nausea, muscle aches and pains and/or swelling at the site of the insect bite). Tap water is heavily treated resulting in a strong chemical taste; bottled water is, however, freely available for drinking purposes. Milk in rural areas is not pasteurised. Travellers are advised to take along medication for travellers' diarrhoea. Hospitals in the major cities are fairly good, but medical costs are high and medical insurance is strongly recommended.

Tipping: Nearly all hotels add a service charge to the bill, usually 10%. Most restaurants also add 10% or more to the total of the bill, but must make it clear that they have done so; waiters appreciate another 5% if their service has been good. Brazilians don't normally tip taxi drivers, except if they handle bags, although they may round up the total. Hotel staff expect small tips and most services expect 10-15%.

Safety: Brazil is politically stable with no natural enemies and no terrorist activities. In metropolitan areas, however, petty crime is a fact of life. Rio in particular is regarded as one of the most crime-ridden cities in the world and, although violent crime is generally limited to the slum areas, foreign businessmen and tourists are advised to take precautions. Visitors should not attempt to visit slum areas unless on a guided tour. However violent crime is on the increase due to the establishment of drug and criminal gangs around Rio and Sao Paulo. Muggings, often involving firearms, are high and visitors should avoid wearing jewellery and expensive watches, dress down and conceal cameras. Valuables should be deposited in hotel safes. The threat of personal attack is lower outside the main urban centres, but incidents do occur, and women should be aware that sexual assaults have been reported in coastal holiday destinations. Beware of unofficial taxis and those with blacked-out windows and be particularly careful on public transport in Rio, Recife and Salvador.

Communications: The international access code for Brazil is +55. The outgoing code depends on what network is used (e.g. 0014 for Brasil Telecom), which is followed by the relevant country code (e.g. 001444 for the United Kingdom). Mobile phone networks cover the main cities, and phones are available to rent. Internet cafes are widely available. Every town has a central telephone office called a Posto Telefonico, from where long distance calls can be made, and public phone booths are everywhere, operated by phone cards. For cheaper calls, visitors can connect to an operator at home and place a credit card or collect call. Sending mail overseas is expensive, but the postal system is generally reliable and airmail usually takes up to a week.

Duty Free: Travellers to Brazil can enter the country with goods to the value of US$500 without incurring customs duty. These include 400 cigarettes or 25 cigars, or 250g of tobacco; and 2 litres of alcoholic beverages. Restricted items include fresh produce and plant and animal products. Strict regulations apply to temporary import or export of firearms, antiquities, tropical plants, medication and business equipment.

                                                           
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