9 Things I'd Like to Tell Foreigners About Recife
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9 Things I'd Like to Tell Foreigners About Recife

It's not Rio or Sao Paulo, but it's just as amazing

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9 Things I'd Like to Tell Foreigners About Recife
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1- It's located in Brazil's bit the closest to Africa

Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo are way south. Also, because of it's location, we have basically two seasons: Hellcife, when it's 90F, and Raincife, when it's almost as hot but it pours unforgivably. A funny fact is, Recifenses are terribly afraid of the cold. From time to time the temperature unusually drops to 70F and we all lose our minds. There's even a movie, Cold Recife, where the situation is taken to the extreme and the city is permanently sunless. It's apocalyptical.

2- It's actually a pretty big city

With over 1.5 million people, yes, I can say I live in a Metropolitan area.

3- Recife is Olinda's sister, and though there were some fights in the past, now we love bragging about each other.


Olinda is usually the more well-known by tourists because it has maintained its colonial style, but the History of both cities is deeply connected. In the past, back in the 16th century, Olinda was where the powerful families lived, and Recife wasn't much more than its harbor. Then the Dutch came and everything changed. I'll explain it later. Now Recife, whose name refers to the reefs around it, kind of sees Olinda as its pretty jewel. After all, that's what Olinda means, "Oh, beautiful".

4- We were at some point invaded by the Dutch

Can I begin saying that it all started when a Portuguese prince died in a battle in Morocco? Well, he died and suddenly the closest heir to the throne of Portugal was the king of Spain. Iberian Union, Portugal's territories weakened. The Dutch saw their chance and conquered Recife, for many riches passed through its harbor. The city grew and developed and it's not hard to find someone who believes it would all have been so much better if only they had stayed. I mean, we all love our Dutch governor, Mauricio de Nassau. He made a bull fly across the river! But then they started asking the Brazilian aristocracy for the money they had lent them, and were expelled after an epic-not-so-epic battle in the "Guararapes Hill". It was all around the 17th century. I will stop blurting out History now, just let me say this one more thing: the prince who died, D. Sebastian, never had his body recovered and this started a religious movement known as Sebastianism, which later caused some confusion in the Northeast of Brazil.

5- We dance Frevo, not Samba

Okay, most of us don't actually know how to do it, but we have more clues than when it comes to Samba. Frevo is a rhythm born in Recife, and that's what you'll see people dancing during Carnival. Talking about Carnival, we have the Galo da Madrugada, which I have never been to (because not all Brazilians enjoy partying and soccer) but we all love saying that it's the biggest carnival parade in the world.

6- Recife has great museums AND a beautiful theater (and yes, the theater is pink)

Looking for cultural attractions, there're a couple of museums you can visit. The most famous ones are the Pernambuco State Museum and the Ricardo Brennand Institute, which we all call The Castle, for it's an actual castle in the outskirts of town. Just a curiosity, Pernambuco is the name of our state and for some reason we adore saying it's 10 letters long and none of them repeat. As for the aforementioned theater, it's the Santa Isabel and if you go to a play there, you might just as well pretend you're in a 19th century romance.


PS: Yes, I did give a special attention to the theater just because we're namesakes.

7- Our river receives its name because of the capybaras that once lived there


So cute and the largest rodent in the world, capybaras might not be as common roaming around the river Capibaribe now, but every Recifense knows precisely what they are. They are a kind of city mascot.

8- It's an extremely geek city

We have great bookstores and if you're in the mall during the release night of a blockbuster, you can expect to see people cosplaying. We'll also be holding the Northeastern version of Brazil's biggest comic-con, the CCXP, and we have this weird bridge-y thing that reminds the Eye of Sauron for the strong-minded:

9- Recife is nothing more than the Brazilian Venice


I guess it's no surprise now if I say that Recifenses are megalomaniac, is it? But look, our city is beautiful:

If you ever come to Brazil, pay us a visit :)

Oh, and don't forget, we also have great food


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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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