Senior Travel to Recife… in Brazil

Apr 27th, 2011 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel

Recife is a spot in Brazil where seniors will find plenty to do and enjoy sandy beaches and a climate that few can match. This site above claims to have “all that you will need” for your visit.   Recife, the capital of Pernambuco, is one of the largest and most important cities on the northeastern coast of Brazil. This lively capital, originally founded by Dutch colonizers, is brimming with a vibrant culture, an interesting old town (which includes the oldest synagogue in the Americas) and some nice beaches. Or course, here they speak Portuguese. The city got its name from the coral reefs that line the coast.

Recife is the fourth-largest metropolitan area in Brazil with 4,136,506 (2009) inhabitants, the largest metropolitan area of the North/Northeast Regions, the 4th-largest metropolitan influence area in Brazil.  But it is less modern and cosmopolitan than its more famous counterparts. Recife and its environs have only recently become a tourist destination, so visitors are often a novelty for its inhabitants, especially those of the neighboring fishing villages. Recife is a major port city, and much of its energy and culture has its source in the constant influx and outflow of trade. High rises, colonial churches, and markets quilt the city with a mix of old and new. 

Recife is located where the Beberibe River meets the Capibaribe River to flow into the Atlantic Ocean. It is a major port on the Atlantic Ocean. Its name is an allusion to the coral reefs that are present by the city’s shores. The many rivers, small islands and over 50 bridges found in Recife city center characterize its geography and gives it the moniker of the “Brazilian Venice.” Canals, rivers, bridges, one-way streets and its resemblance to European cities have led Recife to be known as the ‘Venice of Brazil’. Its many islands and mangroves give it its unique identity. Recife is considered the cultural capital of Brazil as many famous poets, writers (Manuel Bandeira, João Cabral de Melo Neto), composers (Chico Science, Lenine) and players were born in this city. High buildings of present era and colonial structure give the city a mixed look. It offers walkable tours, great beaches and lively arts and entertainment. 

The Boa Viagem beach in Recife is one of the most famous urban beaches in Brazil. Visitors get enchanted by the sandy beaches with warm green waters and also by the complete infrastructure of hotels, restaurants and services which surrounds it. Looking for quieter beaches? The entire coastline of Pernambuco is dotted with beaches for all tastes, such as Maria Farinha, for nautic sports practioners, and Porto de Galinhas, chosen by specialized magazines as the best beach in Brazil. 

Attractions? There are plenty, including many historic churches. The city puts on a great carnaval so you might want to schedule a visit to the Recife and Olinda carnivals in February/March, or to the off-season carnival, called Recifolia, in October. Either occasion means thousands of visitors, so make your reservations early. The Top 10 Things to Do in Recife will keep you occupied for quite some time and Olinda is the reason many visitors travel to Recife. Olinda is a living museum, a UNESCO heritage city, and considered to be the origin of the entire Brazilian culture of the 16th century. 

There are direct scheduled flights to Recife from São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Brasília and a host of other Brazilian cities. Want to know where it is located?  Try this map Yahoo of the NE coast. Lonely Planet has another that also provides lots of tourist information. Check it out.  Boa viagem or… Bon Voyage!  jeb



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