Brazil

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With the largest landmass in South America, and the longest coastline of any South American nation, Brazil also has the largest population on that continent. Most of them gravitate towards Brazil’s beaches; this is a mostly very hot country, with the Equator passing through it and with most of it north of the Tropic of Capricorn. This is the fifth largest country on the planet; it is significantly larger than Portugal from where it derived its official language.

Besides having a long Atlantic Ocean coastline of 4,655 miles (7,491 kilometers), Brazil is dotted with small and large freshwater lakes and rivers; it is home to the Amazon River, one of the world’s most famous. But it’s the Atlantic coast of Brazil that has most of its holiday beaches, and the Brazilians know how to enjoy their day at the beach. Liberal attitudes are tolerant of topless sunbathing, and the vibrant spirit of the young people means beach partying starts after midnight in most places.

Brazil, specifically Rio de Janeiro, is the location of two of the world’s most renowned beaches, Copacabana Beach and Ipanema Beach. Situated adjacent to one another, the former is party-central and the latter the trend-setting glamour spot. It’s a wild time, and pretty much anything goes.

Rich with Latin history, as well as Spanish and Portuguese influences, Brazil consists of 26 states, 17 of those on the coasts, and one federal district where the capital, Brasilia, is situated. The three largest cities, Sao Paolo, Rio de Janeiro and Salvador, in that order, are located on the Atlantic coast and have hundreds of long, sandy beaches.

Brazilians (they number about 200 million) may love their beaches, but they also love soccer and Formula 1 racing; Ayrton Senna and Nelson Piquet are among the F1 drivers that came from Brazil. So, far the Brazilians have figured out how to play soccer on their beaches, but it seems unlikely we’ll see an F1 race right on Copacabana Beach any time soon!

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