Bandeira do Brasil

Bandeira do Brasil

Saturday, November 30, 2013


The postcardlike view is one of the attractions of the hostel run by Bruno and Fernanda on top of the Vidigal favela, south zone of Rio. Whoever stays here is begotten the Brazilian way. Perhaps that is why the hostel, which is less than a year old,  has always been fully booked.
Obviously the daily low fare is much of an attraction, but who climbs the hill is in search for something extra -wandering over alleys and lanes, greeting neighbors and feeling as a favela resident.
"An invisile wall is said to be felt though, but it is gradually coming down - fear eventually subsides into friendship after 24 hours. That's the difference.", says Cristiane de Oliveira, owner of the  hostel at Chapeu Mangueira Hill, in Leme.
An Austrian guitarist felt fearful at first when he came to the slum. "I saw no keys to the doors here, and was afraid people might barge in, but I never had any problem, and that is really cool," he said.
A survey led by the Ministry of Tourism reveals that 95.7% of foreigners who come to Brazil are willing to return. "There is a considerable number of those who have come, stayed and are now residents and no longer want to go away," according to Cristiane.
Such is the case of Mexican brothers Santiago and Oscar. They planned to spend a month at the Vidigal hostel. Four months have passed by and they already feel like Cariocas. "We feel like family here in Rio," they say.


LINKS: FAVELA DO CANTAGALO                         Ever growing tourism (in Portuguese)
              FAVELA DO VIDIGAL

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Balloons equipped with radio transceivers could soon be bringing the internet to remote parts of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil

The airborne devices are said to provide the same connection speed as the 3G network from almost 800ft in the air.

The balloons, which aim to connect regions cut off by traditional technology, have been developed by Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research as part of the government’s National Broadband Plan.

Government ministers have also reportedly been in discussions with Google, which is also piloting its internet-powered balloon initiative, called “Loon”, in New Zealand.

Paulo Bernardo, Brazil’s communications minister, said: “It will be critical to isolated towns in the Amazon region , which are not yet served by operators.”

Around 250,000 homes – some 950,000 people - are connected to the internet in Amazonas, a state that is home to 3.5 million people, according to the 2010 census.

Earlier this month, the communications ministry, along with the ministry for science, technology and innovation, launched a test balloon in Cachoeira Paulista in São Paulo.

Once in the air, attached to a vehicle, it connected via radio to a fixed point in the city and allowed two video conferences across Skype to take place.

The balloon can carry a connection for a distance of up to 30 miles (50km).

Marco Antonio Raupp, science, technology and innovation minister, added: “I hope the project continues advancing so that the most remote regions, such as the Amazon, have an effective internet signal.”

The project is similar to Google’s pilot initiative, which began in June. In the trial, 30 balloons were launched in New Zealand where 50 residents were responsible for them as “balloon pilots”, offering connections with 3G speed.

The Project Loon balloons are 50ft (15m) by 40ft (12m) and are designed to travel 12 miles (20km) above the Earth’s stratosphere, moving with the wind to provide internet coverage.

“It sounds a bit like science fiction, but we are sure the project will become a reality,” Sameera Ponda, Google engineer, said.

“Bringing internet to all with balloons is easier and cheaper than doing it through satellites.”

Representatives from the web giant met with Brazilian officials to discuss a partnership last month, according to Folha de São Paulo.

“This project would certainly contribute in a significant way to increasing internet access in an area that is difficult to reach with traditional technology,” Mr Bernardo said.

SOURCES: The Telegraph

Monday, November 18, 2013


The State of Sergipe is the smallest state of the Brazilian Federation, located on the northeastern Atlantic coast of the country. It holds a precious gem 213km inland from its capital Aracaju - the Xingo Canyon. 

The Xingo Canyon - one of the largest and most beautiful in the world - is a deep valley 65 km long by 170m deep and its width ranges from 50 to 300 meters. 

The 60-million-year rocky cliffs  spring from the crystal emerald waters of the lake formed by the construction of the Xingo dam in the  Sao Francisco river.

Local attractions include rides by boats, catamaran or schooner into the canyon, the lookout at Piranhas town, a visit to the Xingo museum and to the hydroelectric power plant. Also, climbing, rappeling, cable crossing and trekking are available.


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