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Facts About Brazil


During the dry season (April to October) temperatures in the Pantanal range from 68 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit (20 to 24 degrees Celsius). The hottest months in the Pantanal are December to February when 100 to 112 degrees Fahrenheit (38 to 44 degrees Celsius) is common. During the dry season it is important to drink a lot of liquids so as to avoid dehydration. Starting in November, the weather alternates between torrential rains and scalding sun.

Geographical Facts

  • Capital: Brasilia

  • Official Language: Portuguese

  • Official Religion: None

  • Founding Date: 1822

  • Founder: King John IV of Portugal

  • Government: Federal Republic

  • Chief of State: President

  • Area: 3,300,171 square miles (8,547,403 square kilometres)

  • Bordering Countries: Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Surinam, Uruguay and Venezuela.

  • Highest Waterfall: Iguaçu Falls 237 feet (72 metres).

  • Longest River: Amazon River 1,960 miles (3,154 kilometres) within Brazil (2nd longest in the world after the Nile, in Egypt).

  • Widest Distance East to West: 2,689 miles (4,328 kilometres)

  • Longest Distance North to South: 2,684 miles (4,319 kilometres)

  • Population (est. 2006): 188 million

  • Currency: Real (plural Reais)

  • Adult Literacy Rate: 88%

Health Risks

In the Pantanal, dengue fever, for which there is no vaccination available, is a worry from November to March. The best way to prevent dengue fever and malaria is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. Lodgings in the Pantanal have screened windows, doors and verandas. Use strong insect repellent. There have been some cases of cholera in the Northeast and Yellow Fever occurs in areas of the North and West of Brazil. It is advisable to consult your doctor at least two months before departure to verify all vaccination requirements. Tap water in Brazil is heavily treated and you are advised to stick to bottled mineral water.


  • January 1st: New Year's Day

  • February/March: Carnival (five days from Saturday to Ash Wednesday)

  • March or April: Good Friday (Friday before Easter)

  • 21 April: Tiradentes Day (named after the revolutionary leader, an amateur dentist, hence the name “Tiradentes,” which translated literally means “tooth puller,” who first attempted independence in 1789.)

  • May 1st: Labour Day

  • Forty days after Easter: Ascension Day

  • May or June: Corpus Christi (62 days after Good Friday)

  • September: 7 Independence Day (declared in 1822)

  • October 12: Our Lady of Aparecida (Brazil's Patron Saint)

  • November 2: All Souls' Day

  • November 15: Day of the Republic

  • December 25: Christmas

Passports and Visas

When we last checked, tourists from the following listed countries do not need a visa for holidays in Brazil of less than 90 days prior to arrival:

Albania, Andorra, Anguilla, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba, Bosnia and Herzogovina, Botswana, British Virgin Islands, Bulgaria, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Crimea, Croatia, Curação, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Falkland Islands, Faroe Islands, Fiji, Finland, France, French Polynesia, French West Indies (Martinique, Guadeloupe, Saint Martin and Saint Barts), Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Greenland, Grenada, Guatemala, Guernsey, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Jersey, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macao, Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Margarita Island, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Monaco, Montenegro, Montserrat, Morocco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Palestine, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Pitcairn Islands, Poland, Portugal, Reunion, Romania, Russia, Saint Kits and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Pierre et Miquelon, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Serbia, Singapore, Sint Maarten, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Surinam, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turks and Caicos Islands, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Vatican City, Venezuela, Wallis and Futuna,

but residents of the USA, Canada and Australia, for instance do, and must obtain one before they leave home. However, laws do change, so check with your closest Brazilian consulate in good time prior to departing for Brazil for the latest updates. In any case, anyone entering Brazil must have a passport that is valid for at least six months from the date of entry.




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