Brazil Fast Facts

Brazil brazil real estate

Population: 205,823,665

Capital City: Brasilia

Climate: Mostly tropical, but temperate in south

Time Zone: GMT-3

Language: Portuguese

Country Code: 55

Coastline: 7,491km

Despite Brazil’s size and growing prominence in the world today, it remains uncharted territory for many people. The name “Brazil” likely conjures up images of Rio’s beaches, Carnival, or perhaps the Amazon rainforest. And while Brazil is all these things, it is also much more…Brazil is exotic, romantic, and incredibly diverse. Almost certainly Brazil has something to offer you, regardless of your tastes.

And while this largest of all Latin countries has seen rapid development in recent years, there are still good investment opportunities to be had in some desirable areas.

A Large, Tropical Paradise

Brazil is the world’s fifth-largest country—larger, in fact, than the continental U.S. It comprises more than half of South America, bordering every country except Chile and Ecuador.

The capital of Brazil is Brasilia, with a population of 2.5 million. Its largest city is São Paulo, with over 11 million. Rio de Janeiro, the country’s second-largest city, has an official population of 6.5 million. Brazil has modern cities such as Curitiba and Porto Alegre, and is peppered with lovely colonial towns such as Paraty and Ouro Preto.Brazil Beach

Brazil is blessed with almost 5,000 miles of sandy beaches, warm Atlantic waters, a fantastic climate, and mountains with spring-fresh weather. And don’t forget the Amazon Basin, or the Pantanal, the world’s largest seasonal wetlands.

Brazil’s weather is definitely part of its appeal. The climate is mostly tropical (Brazil has the world’s longest tropical coast), but with temperate climates in the southern part of the country. Temperatures are warm and balmy all year in the tropical areas, but much of the coast enjoys a pleasant onshore breeze, which makes for comfortable weather and clean, healthy air.

What Brazil does not have are earthquakes, tornadoes, and hurricanes.

Brazil’s culture is one of the richest and most fascinating on earth, having added the cultural influences of Europe, Africa, and Asia to its indigenous roots. These roots have together produced a wonderfully rich panorama which ranges from samba to capoeira, and from the festas juninas of the North to the churrascos and mate of the South.

It’s no surprise that many IL readers have taken advantage of the opportunity to retire, own a second home, or invest in Latin America’s largest nation.

Brazilians: The Best Part of Brazil

The Brazilian people are animated, receptive, and irrepressibly upbeat. And although the country has developed and modernized rapidly, it retains a relationship-centered culture. Family and friends are still the central focus for most.

And yet, Brazilians are amazingly receptive of outsiders—as was noted by virtually everyone who visited Brazil during the 2014 World Cup games. Brazilians take pride in helping others, and greet expats with warmth and curiosity.

There are certainly pronounced regional differences. The North and Northeast are known for being laidback; the Cariocas of Rio have their own distinctive flair; Paulistas hustle and have a reputation for business savvy; while the Gauchos of the South have much in common with their neighbors in Argentina and Uruguay. And yet there are traits which unite all the regions, including warmth and a positive outlook.

Expats are Coming to Brazil Like Never Before

Brazil is starting to draw North American expats like never before. And not just expats, but second-home buyers and property investors are also coming down in record numbers.

People are drawn by the thousands of miles of beautiful, white-sand beaches and the warm, tropical weather. But more than that, the Brazilian culture, music, and language are unfamiliar, exotic, and romantic to North Americans. They’re buying beachfront properties and investing in lucrative pre-construction developments—while enjoying a more relaxed lifestyle.

Although Brazil is not as cheap as it was a few years ago, in most locations the cost of living is still low by North American standards. Inexpensive properties, incredible natural beauty, and agreeable weather combine to add up to a tremendous value.

From the Archives of Brazil

Insider Tips For Traveling the World on $40 a Day

Insider Tips For Traveling the World on $40 a Day

Daily Postcard
By |
April 4, 2016

Even if your coffers are bare, you can take a six-month trip if you save $10 a day for two years, or save $13 a day for three years to globetrot for a full year. You may have a healthy savings account already, but there are always ways to cut your expenses and make some extra cash. And it doesn’t have to be difficult, either.

Sunset on the Andes…and an Enriching Overseas Life

Sunset on the Andes…and an Enriching Overseas Life

Living overseas has its benefits…even if you’re not ready to retire yet.The daily commute becomes a cycle to work along a beach path in Portugal…marking essays is not so tedious while sipping mango juice in a bustling cafe in Brazil…the weekly shop for groceries is spiced up immeasurably by a trip to Mercado Central in La Vega, Santiago.

The Prettiest Beach Towns on Brazil’s Northeast Coast

The Prettiest Beach Towns on Brazil’s Northeast Coast

Daily Postcard
By |
November 21, 2015

A recent trip to Brazil’s Northeast coast was where I fell in love with this country. Culture…food…music…art…dance…beautiful weather, and beautiful people—it has it all. And I discovered two of my favorite Brazilian towns—Pôrto De Galinhas and Olinda. The towns are a 90-minute drive from one another, with the city of Recife (the capital of the state of Pernambuco) nestled between the two.

The 3 Best Towns Near Rio, Brazil

The 3 Best Towns Near Rio, Brazil

Beach Living
By |
December 13, 2014

“Rio de Janeiro.” The name alone conjures up images of broad beaches populated by impossibly beautiful people. But while everyone has heard of Rio, far fewer know that “The Marvelous City” lies in a state of the same name. Rio de Janeiro state, though small in size, is geographically quite diverse. Mountains parallel the coastline, sometimes veering down into the sea. Broad swaths of the original mata Atlântica (Atlantic forest)—one of the most biodiverse areas in the world—still blanket the hillsides. Scores of lakes and lagoons lie within sight of the shimmering South Atlantic. Majestic beaches stretch literally for miles; others lie sheltered in secluded coves, accessible only by boat. Tantalizing palm-studded islands, most uninhabited, await the more adventurous.

Beach Town Life in Cabo Frio, Brazil

Beach Town Life in Cabo Frio, Brazil

Beach Living
By |
November 17, 2014

With 4,655 miles of coastline, Brazil boasts scores of lovely beach towns. One of my favorites is the small city of Cabo Frio (pop. 200,000), which lies in the Região dos Lagos (Lakes Region) northeast of Rio de Janeiro. Cabo is a popular getaway for residents of Rio, which is quite a recommendation. Cabo is located two hours by good roads from Rio and Galeão International Airport. Sandwiched between the South Atlantic and Araruama Lagoon, Cabo offers a range of water activities, from laid-back to exhilarating. The principle beach is Praia do Forte, or Fort Beach, named for Fort São Mateus at its extreme eastern end, built between 1616 and 1620 to safeguard these waters from the French and other interlopers. Praia do Forte sprawls wide and unbroken for more than four miles.

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