The city of Rio de Janeiro is located in one of the most beautiful bays in the world, the Guanabara Bay. This bay presents an unparalleled natural scenery, dotted with inlets, famous beaches such as Copacabana and Ipanema, and bizarre shaped mountain formations. These include the very famous Pão de Açúcar (Sugar Loaf) and the equally famous Corcovado.
The city is after São Paulo the most important of Brazil, of which it was the capital until 1960, the year in which the capital of Brazil was moved to the new city of Brasilia. Rio is one of the country’s megacities, in fact it now has over 7 million inhabitants, which with the metropolitan area become almost 14 million.
A FIORENTINE DISCOVERS THE BAY OF RIO DE JANEIRO
The bay of Rio de Janeiro was discovered by the Florentine navigator Amerigo Vespucci in January 1502. He led a Portuguese expedition that explored part of the coast of South America until it reached the present Cananéia in the Brazilian state of São Paulo. The name Rio de Janeiro (January River) is due to the fact that Vespucci mistaken the bay for the mouth of a river.
The first attempt to colonize the Rio area was however made by the French who in 1555 founded the colony of Antarctic France (France Antarctique) in one of the islands of the Guanabara bay and built Fort Coligny there. Subsequently the Portuguese, in 1560, attacked the French and destroyed the French colony. Finally in 1565 another Portuguese expedition founded the first nucleus of the city.
In 1676, Rio de Janeiro became a bishopric and in 1680 the city controlled and administered a territory that included the current Brazilian states of São Paulo and Espiritu Santo. Between 1762 and 1960 Rio de Janeiro was the capital of Brazil.
In 1676 Rio de Janeiro became a bishopric and in 1680 the city controlled and administered a territory that also included the current Brazilian states of São Paulo and Espiritu Santo. Between 1762 and 1960 the city of Rio was the capital of Brazil.
THE MAIN TOURIST DESTINATION OF BRAZIL
The city is the main tourist destination in Brazil. Its marine and mountainous landscape, thanks to its uniqueness, became part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012. They are unique witnesses: The splendid bay with its long and very popular beaches with famous names such as Copacabana and Ipanema. Its iconic mountains such as the Sugar Loaf and the Corcovado with the symbol of the city: Christ the Redeemer.
The climate of the city.