Holidays in Brazil

Brazilian Holidays and Festivals

Brazilians love a party. Celebrations of all types are just part of of the rhythm of life, and are the foundation of Brazilian culture. The celebrations can also be much more elaborated than Carnival anywhere, and you can notice the friendly ambience and merry characteristics of the locals. Besides the country’s animated festivals and celebrations, Brazil has numerous traditions, from sports to dance to religious rites.

The holidays herein mentioned are religious, or bear religious connotations, draw from the predominant religions, Catholicism and Candomble.




Jan 1

New Year’s Day

The offerings to Iemanjá (Brazilian goddess of the sea Festival on Feb 2)

National holiday

Observance, Candomble

Jan 6

Folia de Reis (Epiphany)

Observance, Christian





Carnival (Shrove Tuesday)

National holiday


Carnival (Ash Wedneday)

Observance, Christian


Sexta-Feira da Paixão (Good Friday)

National holiday


Páscoa (Easter Day)

National Holiday

Apr 21

Tiradentes (Brazilian Martyr for National Independence)

Brasília’s anniversary (Brasília is the capital of Brazil)

National Holiday

May 1

Labour Day (History)

National Holiday


Cavalhadas (Horse Riding Parade)

Southern, Southeastern and Middle-western cities


The Day of Pentecost

Folia do Divino Espírito Santo (Cult of the Holy Spirit)

Observance, Christian

Jun 12

Valentine’s Day



Festival Folclórico de Parintins (Parintins Folklore Festival)

Parintins, AM


Corpus Christi Day

National holiday


Festa Junina (June Party) (Video)

Observance, Christian


Boi-Bumbá (Video)



Festa do Peão de Boiadeiro (Rodeio Festivals)


Aug 25

Festa do Peão de Boiadeiro de Barretos (Rodeo Festival)

Barretos, SP

Sep 7

Independence Day (History) (a version of Brazilian National Anthem in many music styles)

National holiday


Octoberfest (Video)

Blumenau, SC

Oct 12

Our Lady Aparecida

National holiday

Oct 14

Círio de Nazaré (Wax Candle of Nazaré)

Observance, Christian

Nov 2

All Souls’ Day

National holiday

Nov 15

Republic Proclamation (History)

National holiday

Dec 24

Véspera de Natal (Christmas Eve)

Observance, Christian

Dec 25

Natal (Christmas)

National holiday

Dec 31

Véspera de Ano Novo (New Year’s Eve)



About my people, Brazilians

Greeting visitors with a huge smile

About Brazilian people

People: A mixture of people from many countries: Italy, Portugal, Spain, Germany, Africans and native Indians.

Population: 199,321,413 (July 2012 est.). The sixth largest in the world. About the same as Mexico, Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela.

Ethnic groups (2000 census):

  • white ( includes Portuguese, German, Italian, Spanish, Polish ): 53.7%,
  • mulatto ( mixed white and black ): 38.5%,
  • black: 6.2%,
  • other ( includes Japanese, Arab, Amerindian ): 0.9%
  • unspecified: 0.7% ( 2000 census )


  • Roman Catholic ( nominal ): 65%
  • Protestants: 22%
  • Others: 5%

Age structure:

  •     0-14 years: 24.7% ( male 25,066,889/female 24,125,185 )
  •     15-24 years: 16.8% ( male 17,002,355/female 16,535,115 )
  •     25-54 years: 43.4% ( male 42,840,045/female 43,621,211 )
  •     55-64 years: 8% ( male 7,522,621/female 8,441,593 )
  •     65 years and over: 7.1% ( male 6,007,524/female 8,158,875 ) ( 2012 est. )
  •     Median age total: 29.6 years  ( male: 28.8 years/female: 30.5 years) ( 2012 est. )
  •     Population growth rate0.86% ( 2012 est. )
  •     Birth rate:15.2 births/1,000 population ( 2012 est. )
  •     Death rate: 6.5 deaths/1,000 population ( July 2012 est. )

Net migration rate: -0.09 migrant(s)/1,000 population ( 2012 est. )

Sex ratio: 1.05 male(s)/female

  •     under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
  •     15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
  •     65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/female
  •     total population: 0.98 male(s)/female ( 2011 est. )

Infant mortality rate: 20.5 deaths/1,000 live births

  •     male: 23.9 deaths/1,000 live births
  •     female: 16.9 deaths/1,000 live births ( 2012 est. )

Life expectancy at birth:

  •     total population: 72.79 years
  •     male: 69.24 years
  •     female: 76.53 years ( 2012 est. )
  •     Total fertility rate: 1.82 children born/woman ( 2012 est. )


  •     definition age: 15 and over can read and write
  •     total population: 88.6%
  •     male: 88.4%
  •     female: 88.8% ( 2004 est. )

School life expectancy ( primary to tertiary education ):

  •     total: 14 years
  •     male: 14 years
  •     female: 14 years ( 2008 est. )

Another information:

  • the mix of races has made Brazil a culturally rich and at the same time unique country. This miscegenation began with the Indian, the African and the Portuguese, but in a short time, immigrants from around the world began to arrive: Europeans, Asians, Jews and Arabs;
  • the result was a happy people, open to everything new, a people only found in Brazil. Because of this tremendous diversity, Brazil is one of the last places on earth where no one is a foreigner, where one can change one’s destiny without losing one’s identity and where each and every Brazilian has a little of the entire world in his or her blood;
  • this may be the reason the Brazilian receives anyone from another land so well. According to surveys carried out with foreign tourists who visited the country, 97.2% intend to return soon; 56.5% had their expectations completely satisfied; and, for 31.7%, their expectations were completely exceeded. As you can see, those who come to Brazil become fans on the first visit. Find out more about Brazil by navigating through our site. Or better yet: visit the country in person and feel for yourself the happiness and enthusiasm of our people.

More info:

About my country, Brazil

The largest country in Latin America

Basic Indicators:


  • Discovered by the Portuguese in 1500 AD.
  • Named for Brazil wood ( Pau Brasil ) used for lumber.
  • Became Monarchy, independent from Portugal in 1822.
  • Current president is Dilma Vana Roussef ( since January of 2011 ).

Regimen and Form of Government: Presidential Republic.
Capital: Brasilia (Federal District).
Currency: Real.
National Date: Independence Day, September 7th.
Nationality: Brazilian(s) ( noun ), Brazilian ( adjective ).
States: 26 states, distributed among 5 geographic regions, North, Northeast, Central-west, Southwest, and South.
Location: Eastern South America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean.
Map references: South Americ.
Geographic coordinates: 10 00 S, 55 00 W


  • the official language is Portuguese; however, the accent and the intonation are very different from what one hears in Portugal and other former Portuguese colonies;
  • some people say that Brazilians speak “Brazilian”, just like Americans can say they speak “American”, and not English. And there are also many Brazilians who are descendants of immigrants and who speak German and Italian, especially in cities in southern Brazil.


  • total: 8,511,965 sq km ( 3,3000,000 square miles )
  • land: 8,456,510 sq km
  • water: 55,455 sq km
  • Note: includes Arquipélago de Fernando de Noronha, Atol das Rocas, Ilha da Trindade, Ilhas Martin Vaz, and Penedos de São Pedro e São Paulo.
  • Area-comparative: slightly smaller than the US Land boundaries ( total: 14,691 km ).

Maritime claims:

  • contiguous zone: 24 nm
  • continental shelf: 200 nm
  • exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
  • territorial sea: 12 nm

Terrain: mostly flat to rolling lowlands in north; some plains, hills, mountains, and narrow coastal belt

Elevation extremes:

  • lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
  • highest point: Pico da Neblina 3,014 m

Natural resources: bauxite, gold, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, platinum, tin, uranium, petroleum, hydropower, timber.

Land use:

  • arable land: 8.45%
  • permanent crops: 0.83%
  • permanent pastures: 22%
  • forests and woodland: 58%
  • other: 90.72% ( 2011 est. )

Irrigated land: 54,000 sq km ( 2011 est. )

Natural hazards: recurring droughts in northeast; floods and occasional frost in south Environment-current issues: deforestation in Amazon Basin destroys the habitat and endangers the existence of a multitude of plant and animal species indigenous to the area; air and water pollution in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and several other large cities; land degradation and water pollution caused by improper mining activities.

Climate and Temperature in Brazil:

  • mostly tropical, but temperate in south;
  • Brazil’s climatic typology is very diverse. The huge territorial expanse, allied with factors such as temperature, altitude, barometric pressure and proximity to the ocean, provide the country with climatic conditions that can please everyone. It is one of the richest and most complex ecosystems in the world, with extremely diversified vegetation and sceneries;
  • the Brazilian territory is divided into climatic strips: 92% of the territory is located between the Equator and the Tropic of Capricorn. We can therefore say that the Brazilian climate is predominantly tropical, with equatorial and subtropical ( temperate zones ) strips distributed over the remaining 8% of the nation’s territory. The predominance of lower altitudes throughout the country provides more elevated temperatures, with averages exceeding 20°C;
  • the seasons are the exact opposite of those in Europe and the United States, except in the northern region of the country. The average annual temperature is approximately 28ºC in the northern region and 20ºC, in the south;
  • extreme temperatures are rare, but they may occur: in the winter, some cities in the south of the country experience negative temperatures, with frost and snow. And in Rio de Janeiro, in the peak of summer, the temperature may hit 40ºC.

Another information:

  • it is the fifth largest country in the world after Canada, the Russian Federation, China and the United States (about the same area as Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, Paraguay, Uruguay and Ecuador combined). Except for a small number of islands, Brazil is a single and continuous land mass;
  • the Equator passes through the northern region, near Macapá, and the Tropic of Capricorn cuts through the south of the country, near São Paulo;
  • Brazil’s east to west extension ( 4,319.4 km ) is almost equivalent to its north to south distance ( 4,394.7 km );
  • the country borders French Guiana, Suriname, Guiana, Venezuela and Colombia, to the north; Uruguay and Argentina, to the south; and Paraguay, Bolivia and Peru, to the west. Ecuador and Chile are the only two countries on the South American continent that do not border Brazil. The Atlantic Ocean extends along the country’s entire eastern coast, providing 7,367 km of coastline.

More info:

History of Brasília 2

The meaning

The word ‘Brasília’ can mean many different things:

  • administratively, Brasilia is only one of the Administrative Regions of the Federal District. ‘Asa Sul’ ( Southern Wing ), ‘Asa Norte’ ( Northern Wing ) and the downtown area of ‘Plano Piloto’ ( Pilot Plan ) are parts of it;
  • to some, Brasilia is everything which was in the original urban plan; nowadays that is divided into three administrative regions: ‘Brasilia’ ( as above ), ‘Lago Sul’ ( South Lake ) and ‘Lago Norte’ ( North Lake );
  • for many of the Federal District’s inhabitants, Brasilia would include all of the above plus one more administrative region, ‘Cruzeiro’ ( which is itself subdivided into four areas – ‘Cruzeiro Velho’, ‘Cruzeiro Novo’, ‘Octogonal’ and ‘Sudoeste’ ). For those people, ‘Cruzeiro’ is not a satellite town. Note: for some people, ‘Octogonal’ and ‘Sudoeste’ are part of Brasilia, but ‘Cruzeiro Velho’ and ‘Cruzeiro Novo’ are not. My personal opinion is that this does not make sense, as the four areas are contiguous;
  • ‘Brasilia’ is also used to mean both the ‘Plano Piloto’ and all satellite cities. In this case, the urban nuclei of all the Administrative Regions of the Federal District would be included.

Planned for only 500,000 inhabitants, Brasilia has seen its population grow much more than expected. Several satellite towns have been created over the years to house the extra inhabitants. Brasilia’s total population ( including the satellite cities ) is now over 2,000,000 inhabitants.

History of Brasília 1

The idea

Shifting the capital from Rio de Janeiro to the heartland was actually quite an old idea. Hipolito Jose da Costa was supportive of it at the turn of the previous century. Jose Bonifácio presented a bill to the Constitutional Assembly of 1823, which was to be dissolved by Dom Pedro I ( Emperor of Brazil ). All Constitutional Assemblies held after the Republic ( 1891, 1934, 1937 and 1946 ) had provisions for the change.

There were several reasons why such a measure should be taken:

  • fear of invasions – Brazil had been systematically invaded in the past ( by the French, the Dutch and even by the Portuguese, after Independence ). Having the capital ( Rio de Janeiro ) by the sea made it very vulnerable;
  • helping develop the heartland;
  • security reasons – A smaller city would be easier to control in the event of riots or the like. Also, popular demand would be of lesser extent.

Brief history

Brasilia was constructed between 1956 and 1960, during the government of President Juscelino Kubitschek. It was inaugurated, as Brazil’s new capital, on April 21, 1960. Its master plan ( ‘Plano Piloto’ ) was conceived by Lucio Costa, and its major buildings were designed by Oscar Niemeyer. Brasilia was designed to have the shape of an airplane, sometimes viewed as a giant bird.

Photos of Brasília

In the end, Brasilia came to be as a result of one man’s will to take this cause with all his heart, after being asked if he would do so by a common citizen in a small town rally.

A tour around my city, Brasília


Basic Information
DDD: 61
Inhabitants: 2,570,160
Fuse Time: – 3 GMT
Local Holidays:
Apr/21 – Anniversary of Brasília
Nov/30 – Believer’s Day

Brasília, the capital of Brazil, was built 53 years ago by Juscelino Kubitschek, the Brazilian President at that time. It has the shape of an airplane, and was planned by Oscar Niemeyer. Because of that, it is divided into Northern, Southern, Western and Eastern parts. It is the most modern city of 20th century, and was registered as Mankind Heritage by UNESCO in 1987.

Brasília is a singular city. It was built in the middle of nothing and inaugurated in less than four years. Only these facts would be enough to make evident that the capital of Brazil has a history, a least, different from all the other tourism spots of Brazil.

As if it was not enough, Brasília also has the most different monuments. No antiquities or constructions from other centuries, but quite the contrary. The sinuous shapes and the dynamic and daring lines of most buildings give a special characteristic to the city. It’s amazing how the concrete was molded, inspiring a futuristic sensation on those who stares the architectonical set.

The shape of the city is also irreverent, with a shape of a plane and with no crossings, allows tourists to go through it easily. However, it’s practically impossible to know it by foot, due to the distance between the tour spots. It’s indicated to rent a car, since buses takes long routes.

Registered as Mankind Heritage by UNESCO, it has two main access ways. Eixo Monumental is where Congresso Nacional, Palácio do Planalto and Supremo Tribunal Federal buildings are located, among others. Eixo Rodoviário takes visitors to the residential sector of the city.

Approximately 90 embassies are placed in Brasília, which also has a people originated from the mix of people from the most varied places. Such mix is also reflected in the city gastronomy, which has influence of typical food of Brazilian savanna and also from the european cuisine in a profusion of flavors.

But it does not have only concrete. Besides Paranoá Lake, one of the biggest artificial lakes ever constructed, the metropolis and its surroundings has green areas, like Parque Nacional and Parque da Cidade. Those who want to visit Chapada dos Veadeiros land at the international airport to, then, take a bus to the neighbor cities of the park, inhabited by mystics from all around the world.

Besides being constructed to be grandiose, with imposing monuments, it is a calm city, where calmness reigns, with streets usually empty, especially in the weekends. But don’t think that there is no nightlife in the city. Even with fame of peaceful, Brasília has bars and nightclubs frequented by tourists and local residents. More than a simple destination for business trips, more and more it gets consolidated as cultural and entertainment nucleus of Brazil. Obviously, it will always be ideal for hosting great events, with Convention and Exhibition Centers and auditoriums.

Places to visit in Brasília:

More info:

My hometown, Goiânia




Basic Information
DDD: 62
Inhabitants: 1,302,001
Fuse Time: – 3 GMT
Local Holidays:
Oct/24 – Anniversary of the city
May/24 – Day of ‘Nossa Senhora Auxiliadora’, patron saint of Goiânia.

I was born in Goiânia, a city of Goiás, a state in the middle western region of Brazil. As I do not live there since 5 years old, I cannot tell you in detail its history etc. Therefore, I decided to show you some pictures about it.

The capital of the state of Goiás, Goiânia is 200 km southwest of Brasília and 900 km from both Cuiabá and São Paulo. Planned by urbanist Armando de Godói and founded in 1933, it is a fairly pleasant place, with lots of open spaces laid out around circular streets in the center. There are three main zones — housing is in the south, administration is in the center, and industry and commerce are in the north. Goiânia’s economy is based on the commercialization of the region’s cattle.

Goiânia is a new city. It was planned and constructed less than a century ago, but grew quickly and is already the second most populated city in the Mid-West region, only behind Brasília. The parks are among the main entertainment options. Most of them is registered as city patrimony and have infrastructure to receive the public, with entertaining equipments, lunch area and, in some of them, space for camping. Notoriety to the ‘Zoológico’ (  Zoo  ), which offer paddle boats. There are also eight museums in the city.

Restaurants, bars and hotels are concentrated in noble districts, like ‘Setor Oeste’, ‘Bueno’ and ‘Marista’, but the night program of show houses is varied and attends well the population. There are also good bars in the city, always presenting live music. Maybe it’s the reason why Goiânia is considered the source of new singers, who, above everything, become known regionally, and artists.


Considered to be one of the seven best cities in terms of quality of life in Brazil, Goiânia is proud of delighting its inhabitants and visitors with:

  • woods like the Bosque of Buritis and Botafogo, Rosas Lake, the Botanic Garden and the Ecological Parks of Goiânia, Vaca Brava e Areião, are examples of urban development in partnership with nature and a true commitment to the well-being of the population;
  • refreshing lakes, luxurious vegetation and the sound of birds and animal in all these places, which can be appreciated quite closely by people, specially while going for a walk, as there are jogging tracks almost everywhere.

Nothwithstanding a well preserved and a most valuable nature, this is not the only attraction of this city founded by Pedro Ludovico in 1934 in a region of humid and mild climate, 749 meters above the sea level and average temperature of 21,9 ºC.

You can find many leisure options in Goiânia, several entertainment areas at shopping malls. Or if you prefer a walk you can visit the City Park. At the Zoo you will observe the beauty of the Lagoon of Roses. Museums, theaters are also good options.


Places to visit in Goiânia:

More info: