Rio State Information

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Rio de Janeiro State has an area of 43,653km² and its capital city is Rio de Janeiro, which was the capital of the Portuguese colony as of 1763 (the first capital being Salvador da Bahia), the capital of the United Kingdom of Brazil, Portugal and Algarves as of 1806 and the capital of independent Brazil from 1822 to 1960.

The state's most populous cities are Rio de Janeiro itself, Nova Iguaçu, Niterói, Duque de Caxias, São Gonçalo, São João de Meriti, Campos dos Goytacazes, Petrópolis and Volta Redonda.

The principal rivers of the State are the Guandu River, the Piraí, the Paraíba do Sul, the Macaé and the Muriaé. It's climate is considered to be tropical.

Rio de Janeiro is made up of two distinct morphological areas: a Plain, known as baixada, and a Plateau, which extend from the coastline to the countryside (towards Minas Gerais).

The Brazilian flag represents the State with the Beta star in the Southern Cross

Rio de Janeiro was originated from parts of the captainships of de Tomé and São Vicente. Between 1555 and 1567, the French were bust across this territory and intended to creata a colony, French Antarctique. French occupation was prevented in March 1565, when the city of Rio de Janeiro was established by Estácio de Sá.

In the 17th century, cattle and sugar cane stimulated the city's progress which was definitively assured when the port started to export the extracted gold of Minas Gerais in 18th century. In 1763, Rio de Janeiro became the headquarters of Colonial Brazil and the capital city of the colony. With the change of the Brazilian royal family in 1808, the region benefited with urban reforms to shelter the Portuguese. Other notable changes included the transference of agencies of public administration and justice, the creation of new churches and hospitals, the foundation of the first bank of the country - 'Banco do Brasil' - and the Imprensa Régia, along with the Gazette do Rio of Janeiro being born. In the years to follow came the 'Jardim Botânico', and the 'Academia Real Militar'.

Thus, a process of cultural introduction, influenced not only by the arrival of the Royal Family, but also by the presence of European artists who had been hired to register the society and Brazilian nature. In this same time, was born the Escola Real de Ciências, Artes e Ofícios (The Royal School of Sciences, Arts, and Works).

In 1834, the city of Rio de Janeiro became a neutral city, remaining as capital of the country, while the captainships were defined as provinces, with headquarters in the neighbouring city of Niterói. In 1889, the city was changed into the capital of the Brazilian Republic. With the change of the capital for Brasilia, in 1960, the city of Rio de Janeiro became the State of Guanabara.

In 1975, the states of Guanabara and Rio de Janeiro were merged under the name of Rio de Janeiro, with the city of Rio de Janeiro as state capital. The symbols of the former State of Rio de Janeiro were preserved, while the symbols of Guanabara were attributed to the city of Rio de Janeiro.


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