Admire the bold architecture of BrasiliaThe capital of Brazil is Brasilia, and not Rio de Janeiro, as many assume. It’s a modern town planning dream come true: the city was built from scratch in 1956. Together the dedicated town planner ad architect set about creating a city that would exist in harmony. The result is an architectural spectacle bursting with notable buildings, in particular the official structures - so much so that the city achieved UNESCO World Heritage Status in 1987. Don’t miss the stunning modernist Brasilia Cathedral, aka Catedral Metropolitana Nossa Senhora Aparecida, which features 16 concrete ‘arms’ reaching towards the heavens. Gawp at the iconic Palácio da Alvorada (Palace of Dawn) which is the president’s official residence and take in the awesome Congress, Presidential Palace (Palácio do Planalto) and the Supreme Court within the Three Powers Square. Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world, and is roughly divided into 5 separate regions (see map).
- The North (in green) is dominated by the mighty Amazonia region, which is the most biologically diverse area on earth.
- The Northeast (in orange) is authentic Brazil, where the impressive coastline really dominates. Expect superb watersports, excellent deep sea fishing opportunities and boat trips to idyllic tropical islands.
- The Central West (in yellow) is home to Brazil’s pulsating capital city of Brasilia.
- The Southeast (in pink) is considered the cultural hotspot of Brazil, thanks to the colourful city of Rio de Janeiro and diverse São Paulo which is actually the largest city in the country.
- The South (in blue) has a strong European influence running throughout its cities, which are small and laidback. The south is home to the world-famous tourist site of Iguaçu Falls.