Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Brazil: State of Bahia

Bahia is situated on the coast, with the turquoise Atlantic Ocean lapping at its shores and is one of the 26 States of Brazil. This state is in the northeast of Brazil, South America. Bahia is the fourth most populous Brazilian State after São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro. Its capital city is Salvador, or more properly, São Salvador da Bahia de Todos os Santos, commonly shortened to Salvador, and is located at the junction of the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of All Saints. It is bordered by Sergipe, Alagoas, Pernambuco, Piauí, Goiás, Tocantins, Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo. The name, Bahia, means “bay” and officially refers to the first sight of the bay seen by European sailors in 1501. 

The birthplace of samba and capoeira, Bahia is the pulsing epicenter of Afro-Brazilian culture in Brazil. So, while everyone is flocking to Rio and its famed Copacabana Beach to soak up the sun, head northeast to Bahia to soak up a warm and vibrant culture.

The Atlantic Forest makes up the vast majority of Bahia’s natural landscape. There is a chain of mountains, called Chapada Diamantina, which winds its way through the State. This range divides the state into an east section and a west section. The east is rich and fertile with regular rain, while the west is less developed and harsher in terms of its natural vegetation. The west is arid, but enjoys the supply of water that it receives from the São Francisco River. The coastline is the longest in Brazil, measuring over 1 100 kilometres, or 685 miles. In general, the climate in Bahia is Tropical.

In terms of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), the industrial sector is the most significant player. This is followed by agriculture, and the export of chemicals, fuels, paper, cacao, and so on. Bahia produces and exports more cacao than any other state in Brazil.

The main regions of Bahia comprise:

• The Coconut Coast – named as such for its extensive coconut groves, this area is on the coast and also boasts glorious rivers and impressive sand dunes. 

• All Saints Bay – this is the largest bay on the coast of the country and is home to 56 islands. It is popular for its water sports and tropical beaches. 

• Dendê Coast – this area has an array of different floral species. It provides the ideal escape for tourists wanting to relax on deserted beaches or walk through dense rain forests. 

• Cacao Coast – pristine beaches are lined with coconut groves in this ecological wonderland. Wetland forests and cacao groves combine with reefs, rivers and islands for gorgeous vistas.

• The Discovery Coast – excursions along the cliffs, beaches and river beds are a must in this unspoilt part of Bahia. 

• The Whale Coast – as its name implies, this area is ideal for whale watching between July and November, attracting visitors from all over the world during this peak season.

• The Diamantina Tableland Region – this is a particularly mountainous area that is traversed by thousands of kilometres of fresh water rivers.
(Source of research: A Study of the Country Brazil)

Here is the Bahia Government tourism web site: http://bahia.com.br/en/

In the following posts we will show the Capital of Bahia and its main regions.

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