Country Spotlight: BRAZIL [Terpii Travels]

Olá amigos, I’m Terpii! When I’m not hanging out in my favorite tree, you can find me exploring new places all over the world. Today, I’m in South America learning more about Brazil.

Terpii on a beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Did you know that there are more Portuguese speakers in Brazil than there are in Portugal? When you think of Brazil, the first thing to come to mind might be the Carnival or their love of soccer. But did you know that Brazil is the 5th largest country in the world both by land mass and population? Wow! It’s actually smaller than the U.S. by only about 430,000 square miles. I feel right at home here, since 60% of Brazil is part of the Amazon Rainforest. Here are some of the things I learned during my stay:

  • Rio De Janeiro was once the capital of Portugal, making it the only European capital to ever be outside of Europe.

  • Despite popular opinion, the current capital of Brazil is Brasilia. The capital was moved inland in the 1950’s to spur development in the rural area and was officially inaugurated in April of 1960.

  • Brazil has won 6 Olympic gold medals in sailing since first competing in 1920.

  • The Brazilians’ reputation as having fantastic soccer players is backed up by holding the most world cup titles of any country at 5.

  • Based on archeological evidence, it is estimated humans first settled in the region 11,200 years ago.

  • One of Brazil’s gifts to the world was the hot air balloon, which was invented by Alberto Santos-Dumont in 1901.

  • Brazil is also home to one of the seven wonders of the modern world. The statue Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro offers magnificent views of the surrounding area and at 98 ft. tall is a site to see.

statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro


  • The official religion is Roman Catholicism, which is practiced by 64% of the population. During the Pope’s visit to Brazil in 2013, over 3 million people filled the beaches of Rio to join the mass celebration.

  • The predominant language spoken in Brazil is Portuguese with an estimated 98% of the population being fluent. With a population of over 200 million, this gives Brazil more than 19x the amount of Portuguese speakers than Portugal itself.

  • Brazil has been the world’s largest exporter of coffee for over 150 years.

  • The Amazon Rainforest produces more than 20% of Earth’s oxygen.

  • Brazil has over 4,000 airports, making it the country with the 2nd highest number of airports in the world.

  • The Tijuca National Park is the largest urban (city-surrounded) forest in the world.

  • The rare dwarf Leopard, also known as the Ocelot, can be found in Brazil.



  • The Amazon is the second longest river in the world and runs through Brazil, Columbia, Peru and Ecuador at 4,345 Miles. The first European to travel the length of the Amazon River was Francisco de Orellana in 1542.


Amazon rainforest


  • 60% of the amazon rain forest resides in Brazil and contains an estimated 390 billion trees made up of over 16,000 species!

  • The famous Carnival festival features 3 types of music: Samba, Frevo and Axe. The Carnival billed as the “largest party in the world” draws millions of people from all over the world and first began partying in 1723.


Last Updated December-16-2016


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