Moving to Brazil: What You Need to Know
Brazil is one of the most popular countries in the world today, particularly among the beach lovers and football fans from all over the globe. It has attracted numerous people over the years, enticing them with its sunny beaches and before you are ready to count yourself among them, there are a few things you need to know.
The country of Brazil is divided into five regions: North, Northeast, Central-West, Southeast and South. The division has no political bearing and is merely for academic purposes. Factors that have played into the picture are geographic, social and economic, among many others. Each region has a distinct ecosystem and not only is there a difference in physical environment, but economic and social activities vary widely among regions as well.
You can find out more about the regions of Brazil here.
With 90% of the country situated within the tropical zone, it comes as no surprise that the country is often dominated by rainfall, heat and humidity. There are five climatic regions in Brazil: equatorial, tropical, semi-arid, highland tropical and subtropical.
The seasons in Brazil are opposite of those in Europe and the United States. Spring takes place from September 22 to December 21, summer from December 22 to March 21, autumn from March 22 to June 21 and lastly winter, which occurs from June 22 to September 21.
The culture of Brazil shows a very varied and diverse nature, a combination of the influences by early European colonists, Native Brazilians, Portuguese and Africans. Due to the three-centuries-long reign of the Portuguese in Brazil, the very core of the Brazilian culture is derived from the culture of Portugal. These include the language, religion and architectural styles. Other influences were African, Native American and other European traditions (such as those from the Italians and Germans).
This diverse culture and helped Brazil organize many colourful celebrations and festivals that are frequented by tourists from all over the world every year.
The language spoken in Brazil is Portuguese. Due to the mixed background of the culture, Brazilian Portuguese contains a large number of words from African and Native American languages.
If you are planning to learn the language with an expert teacher yet still in the comforts of your bed, feel free to visit Livemocha. They offer different types of live and virtual classes that you may be able to organize, so as to meet your preference.
Food & Drink
Each region in Brazil has successfully developed their own native dish, depending on the influence of whoever their European colonists were, their distance to the river, the rainfall and the soil condition of the area.
Some of the most popular dishes from Bahia are vatapa (grounded shrimp and fish cooked in coconut oil and bread), sarapatel (the heart or liver of either a pig or sheep mixed with fresh blood of the animal), and caruru (sauteed shrimp).
If there is one dish that would epitomize Brazilian cooking, on the other hand, it would be feijoada. It is a bean dish prepared with air-dried beef, smoked sausage, tongue, pig’s ears and tails, garlic, and chilli peppers. The dish is often garnished with spring beans and slices of oranges.
There are two drinks that are said to be unique to Brazil: Guarana and cachaca. Guarana is a soft drink made out of a fruit from the Amazon, while cachaca is a powerful spirit made from fermented sugar cane and is considered to be the national spirit of Brazil.