Busted: Myths About Brazil That Are Believed To Be True

Busted: Myths About Brazil That Are Believed To Be True
Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Is there more to Brazil other than the Rio carnival? Find out!

Roshni Subramanian
October 11 , 2019
03 Min Read

Brazil. The land of the Amazon rainforests, football fever and samba. But what else do we know about this country? Not much, I bet. Well, this raises many questions. Why is Brazil, despite being a popular tourist destination, still a mystery? It’s unique cultural identity coupled with the tropical surrounding sure make it a tourist’s paradise. Then why do people still consider it dangerous and unsafe for women? Why is it still labelled as a ‘third world country’?  Are there any other sources of entertainment apart from football? Well, we have answers to all such questions and a lot more. Here are some common misconceptions about Brazil that foreigners often fall prey to. 

Brasilia, capital of Brazil


Rio de Janeiro is the capital of Brazil

Well, if you are under the belief that Rio de Janeiro is the capital of Brazil, then in that case, maybe it’s time for a quick geography lesson. While Rio de Janeiro was the capital of Brazil at one point of time, it was in 1960 that it was changed to Brasilia. Brasilia has also earned a reputation for being a UNESCO world heritage site for its architectural style and urban planning. One can experience cultural diversity at its best in Brasilia. 

Portugese is the official language of Brazil

In Brazil, people speak Spanish

This is one of the most common beliefs about Brazil. And we don’t really blame you for this. It can be an honest mistake. Since Brazil is located in South America and a majority of the country speaks Spanish, it is just convenient to assume that people in Brazil also speak Spanish. But contrary to this notion, Brazilians speak Portugese. Brazil was once colonized by the Portugese and one can find the influence till date. Brazilian Portugese is what the country speaks today. 

Football is an integral part of the national identity

All Brazilians are inherently good at football

Brazil might be the hub of world soccer but not all Brazilians are good at it. While some love football with passion, others are not into it at all. So to say that all Brazilians have the football fever will be a bit of a generalization. You can still find loyal fan bases for this sport all across the country, but not everybody possesses the required talent.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro is the only place worth visiting in Brazil

Many tourists limit their Brazil tour to two major cities of Rio de Janeiro and  São Paulo. We agree that Rio has way too many tourist-y attractions that it’s hard to resist. But next time you’re in this country, pay a visit to Iguaçu falls, Pernambuco beaches or if you’re an art fanatic, maybe the Arts Museum in  São Paulo. The ideal time to visit Brazil is from November to March and from June to September.

Brazil v/s Argentina

Brazil-Argentina enmity

Well in this regard, we’d say that there’s more smoke than there’s fire. Brazil-Argentina  relations are far from any kind of animosity. While things might escalate a bit during the football season and take an intense form, it never goes beyond a friendly banter. Some might even say that Brazilians hate Argentinians, but that’s not the case. The only time you’ll see a Brazilian and an Argentinian at loggerheads is during a football screening. So pick your team and gear up to battle it out!



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