Changing countries is always a big challenge. The first one is knowing where to go: which country offers the advantages you are looking for? What are the cons of each country? Is living in Brazil worth it? In this text, we bring information about Brazil to help you put the country in the balance of your decision! See the reasons to live in Brazil and make your best decision!
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What is it like to live in Brazil?
It depends, as there are 26 states, divided into 5 regions. Therefore, each region has different cultural, social, climatic, and economic characteristics.
In short, there are many Brazils within Brazil.
Below are some characteristics of each region – but keep in mind that we have not exhausted all of their characteristics. After all, even within these regions, you can find strong differences.
The North region is the largest area in Brazil, totaling approximately 3,853,676.948 km². Furthermore, it is made up of 7 states: Amazonas, Acre, Roraima, Rondônia, Pará, Amapá, and Tocantins. The population is 18 million inhabitants.
With a rich cultural diversity, the region is home to indigenous, quilombola, and riverside peoples, who preserve their traditions and ways of life, providing a multicultural and hospitable environment. It has Federal Universities, with research sectors in different areas, and major cultural events, such as the Parintins Festival.
Furthermore, the northern region is characterized by its beautiful landscapes, with immense tropical forests, rushing rivers, and paradisiacal beaches, offering countless ecological and adventure tourism options.
However, it is important to be aware of the challenges that the northern region can present, such as limited access to some services and products, the hot and humid climate, and the presence of insects and wild animals. This requires adaptation and planning on the part of foreigners who wish to live in this region.
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The Northeast region is the 3rd largest in Brazil, with approximately 1,544,291 km², spread across 9 states: Maranhão, Piauí, Rio Grande do Norte, Ceará, Bahia, Pernambuco, Paraíba, Sergipe and Alagoas. Furthermore, the region is the 2nd most populous in Brazil, with approximately 56 million inhabitants. The Northeast is known for having the longest coastline in the country;
Living in the northeast region of Brazil can be a fascinating and welcoming experience for foreigners looking for new cultural and tourist experiences.
The region is famous for its historical, artistic, and culinary richness, offering a unique mix of African, European, and indigenous traditions. The people of the Northeast are known for their hospitality and joy, welcoming visitors with friendliness and willingness.
Furthermore, the northeast of Brazil is characterized by its beautiful beaches, historic cities, hinterlands, and mangroves, providing a favorable environment for leisure and tourism activities.
However, it’s important to be aware that the region can present challenges, such as high temperatures and dry weather, and the presence of mosquitoes that transmit diseases such as Dengue and Zika.
Therefore, it’s significant to be prepared and take preventive measures to make the most of your stay in the northeast region of Brazil.
The Southeast region is the most populous in Brazil, with around 85 million inhabitants, which is equivalent to 44% of the entire Brazilian population. With 4 states: São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and Espírito Santo. It has an extension of 92.05 inhabitants/km².
Living in the southeast region of Brazil can be a diverse and enriching experience for foreigners who want to get to know one of the most developed and populated regions in the country.
The region is made up of the states of São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro, and Espírito Santo, and is home to a wide variety of cultures, traditions, and landscapes.
São Paulo, the largest city in the country, is a financial and cultural center, known for its diversity and vibrant nightlife. Rio de Janeiro, in turn, is famous for its beautiful beaches and lively parties, while Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo offer mountains, natural parks, and historic cities.
The southeast region is also known for its gastronomy, with influences from different cultures and a wide variety of flavors and ingredients.
However, the region also presents challenges, such as heavy traffic, urban violence, and pollution in some urban areas. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the challenges and prepared to deal with them when living in the southeast region of Brazil.
The Central-West region is the 2nd largest region in the country, with an area of 1,606,403 km². In addition, it has 3 states: Goiás, Mato Grosso, and Mato Grosso do Sul, in addition to the Federal District, Brazil’s government headquarters. With around 16 million inhabitants, it has dry winters and rainy summers.
Living in the central-western region of Brazil can be a unique and diverse experience for foreigners looking to explore one of the richest places in natural and cultural beauty in the country.
Composed of the states of Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Goiás, and Distrito Federal, the region offers a unique mix of savannas, rivers, forests, and other beautiful landscapes, which allow the practice of ecotourism, adventure, and rural tourism activities.
Furthermore, the region is characterized by its cultural and gastronomic traditions, such as barbecues, country music, handicrafts, and popular festivals, which reflect the richness of local history and culture.
However, it’s important to be aware of the challenges that the region may present, such as limited access to some services, drought, intense heat, and the presence of wild animals in some areas. This requires adaptation and planning on the part of foreigners who wish to live in this region.
The South region is the smallest region in terms of extension, with approximately 576,774 km². Furthermore, it is made up of 3 states: Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, and Paraná. With around 29 million inhabitants. The predominant climate is subtropical, with well-defined seasons, with cold winters and hot summers.
Living in the southern region of Brazil can be a pleasant and challenging experience for foreigners looking for a region of contrasts and a strong cultural identity.
Composed of the states of Paraná, Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul, the southern region is known for its beautiful nature, mild climate, beaches, mountains, Gaucho traditions, and peculiar cuisine.
Historic cities, such as Curitiba and Florianópolis, have great tourist and cultural potential and are known for their quality of life and tourist attractions.
However, it’s important to be aware of the difficulties that the region can present, such as cold and rainy weather at certain times of the year, as well as problems of violence in some urban areas.
The southern region also has cultural particularities that are distinct from the rest of the country, which may require a period of adaptation on the part of foreigners who wish to live in this region. Therefore, it’s essential to carefully research and plan your stay in this region of Brazil.
Why live in Brazil?
So, check out the 10 main places to live in Brazil. But follow the rest of the text to understand the details of each of them.
- Peaceful diplomatic principle (free from wars);
- Mild climates (either colder or hotter);
- Climatic diversity;
- Cities with abundant nature;
- Highly developed urban cities;
- SUS (free healthcare);
- Stability during natural environmental catastrophes;
- Favorable exchange rate for several countries;
- Brazilian passport accepted in 170 countries;
- Cities have quality of life indexes like the best cities in Europe;
- Possibility of adding working time from other countries to retirement;
- MERCOSUR Residency Agreement and entry visa exemption.
When is living in Brazil worth it for a foreigner?
Living in Brazil is worth it for foreigners when they are looking for a peaceful country, climate stability, and free public healthcare.
Brazilian currency: Furthermore, it may be advantageous to receive it in foreign currency with a favorable exchange rate. In other words, if its value is higher than the Brazilian currency or when your country of origin offers a quality of life and a less developed economy than Brazil.
Is living in Brazil good?
Living in Brazil is good when the foreigner carries out good planning for the move, finding a place that meets their needs and expectations. It’s essential to come to the country with the awareness that, despite the freedoms, there can be a culture clash, as Brazil has both socially progressive people and a very conservative portion.
Therefore, research the place to live well, so that it meets your expectations.
Reasons to live in Brazil: peaceful diplomatic principle
The country has a long peaceful history of not entering into international wars with violence established in its territory. Furthermore, there has been no involvement in international wars for more than 150 years.
Besides, the objective of Brazilian Diplomacy is not to foment any type of international war.
Reasons to live in Brazil: mild climates
Brazil is a country with vast geographic and climatic diversity, which means that there are many areas with mild climates that can be attractive to live in. Therefore, some of the reasons why people seek to live in areas with mild climates in Brazil include:
- Quality of life: a mild climate can improve quality of life, offering pleasant temperatures and a feeling of comfort throughout the year;
- Outdoor activities: in areas with mild climates, it is possible to practice outdoor activities, such as walking, running, cycling, or fishing, more frequently and comfortably;
- Health: the mild climate can also be beneficial for health, especially for people with respiratory or skin problems;
- Natural beauty: stunning natural landscapes are common, such as mountains, beaches, and forests, making them attractive to those seeking a more peaceful lifestyle close to nature;
- Tourist activity: Areas with mild climates are often popular tourist destinations, which can be an advantage for residents who want to get involved in the local community or have easy access to services and amenities.
More than 1,700 people died because of heat waves in Europe in 2022, while in the same year, the United States and Canada faced temperatures that reached -56 °C, being responsible for more deaths. However, in Brazil, extreme temperatures are rare, making deaths due to this climate problem difficult to occur.
Reasons to live in Brazil: climate diversity
In addition to tropical and subtropical climates, Brazil also offers temperate, arid, and mountain climates, depending on the region.
Just to give an example, the tropical climate is characterized by being predominantly hot and rainy. The average annual temperature in regions with a tropical climate is above 20 degrees Celsius. The subtropical climate has four well-defined seasons.
Thus, regions with a subtropical climate have hot summers, mild spring and autumn, and cold winters. Furthermore, this climate has abundant and well-distributed rainfall throughout the year.
What is Brazil’s climate like by region?
In the North region, the climate is hot and humid, with high temperatures throughout the year and a large amount of rain.
In the Northeast region, the climate is tropical and dry, with high temperatures and prolonged dry periods.
In the south of Brazil, the climate is more temperate, with cold winters and hot summers.
The Southeast region offers varied climates, from the hot and humid tropical climate on the coast to the subtropical mountain climate in the mountains.
In short, Brazil offers a wide variety of climates, which means there is an option for almost every taste and preference.
Reasons to live in Brazil: cities with abundant nature
Brazil is a country rich in natural beauty and there are many cities that offer a wide variety of natural landscapes and outdoor activities. Some of the cities in Brazil with abundant nature include:
- Florianópolis – Santa Catarina: Known for its beautiful beaches and natural landscapes, Florianópolis is home to a wide variety of ecosystems, including forests, mountains, mangroves and beaches;
- Foz do Iguaçu – Paraná: Foz do Iguaçu is famous for its waterfalls, which form one of the largest waterfalls in the world. In addition, the city also offers a wide variety of parks and natural reserves, including the Iguaçu National Forest;
- Canela – Rio Grande do Sul: Canela is a mountain city located in southern Brazil, known for its mountain landscapes, waterfalls, natural parks, and hiking trails. The region also offers a wide range of outdoor activities, such as abseiling, cycling, and camping.
- Ilha Grande – Rio de Janeiro: Ilha Grande is a pristine island located off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, offering deserted beaches, green mountains, and waterfalls. The island is a protected area and is considered one of the most popular destinations for nature tourism in Brazil;
- Campos do Jordão – São Paulo: Campos do Jordão is a mountain town located in the interior of São Paulo, offering natural landscapes of snow-capped mountains, waterfalls and hiking trails;
- Paraty – Rio de Janeiro: Paraty is a colonial city located on the coast of Rio de Janeiro, known for its beaches, mountains, and hiking trails. The region also offers a wide range of outdoor activities such as boating, diving, and abseiling.
- Lençóis Maranhenses – Maranhão: The Lençóis Maranhenses National Park is one of the most unique places in Brazil, with its white sand dunes, crystal clear lagoons and mangroves. The region is a protected area and offers a wide range of outdoor activities such as hiking, boating, and camping;
- Porto de Galinhas – Pernambuco: Porto de Galinhas is a tropical beach located on the coast of Pernambuco, known for its crystal clear waters, white sand beaches, and mangroves. The region also offers a wide range of outdoor activities such as boating, hiking, and diving;
- Praia do Forte – Bahia: Praia do Forte is a tropical beach located on the coast of Bahia, known for its white sand beaches, crystal clear waters, and forests. The region also offers a wide range of outdoor activities such as boating, hiking, and diving.
Bonito – Mato Grosso do Sul: Bonito is known for its crystal clear waters, underground caves, waterfalls, and rivers, offering outdoor activities such as diving, floating, and hiking.
Brazil is an incredibly diverse country and offers a wide variety of landscapes and ecosystems to explore.
Reasons to live in Brazil: highly developed urban cities
Brazil has highly developed urban cities, being technological and even industrial hubs. Check out:
- São Paulo – São Paulo: São Paulo is the largest city in Brazil and is considered one of the most important financial and economic centers in Latin America;
- Rio de Janeiro – Rio de Janeiro: Rio de Janeiro is the 2nd largest city in Brazil and is known for its beaches, historical monuments and rich culture;
- Belo Horizonte – Minas Gerais: Belo Horizonte is the 3rd largest city in Brazil, one of the most important financial and economic centers in the country;
- Brasília – Federal District: Brasília is the capital of Brazil and is considered one of the most important political and administrative cities in the country;
- Curitiba – Paraná: Curitiba is a modern and highly developed city;
Porto Alegre – Rio Grande do Sul: Porto Alegre is the capital of Rio Grande do Sul and is considered one of the most developed and modern cities in southern Brazil;
- Recife – Pernambuco: Recife is the capital of Pernambuco and is known for its culture, colonial architecture and coastal landscapes;
- Fortaleza – Ceará: Fortaleza is the capital of the state of Ceará and is known for its beaches and tourism;
- Goiânia – Goiás: Goiânia is the capital of the state of Goiás and is known for its diversified economy and advanced infrastructure. Furthermore, Goiânia is also recognized for its modern architecture and green landscape;
- Natal – Rio Grande do Norte: Natal is the capital of the state of Rio Grande do Norte and is an important commercial and business city in the Northeast of Brazil.
Reasons to live in Brazil: SUS
The Unified Health System (SUS) is Brazil’s public health system. Created in 1988 with the aim of guaranteeing universal access to healthcare for all Brazilian citizens, regardless of their financial condition. The SUS is financed by the Federal Government and by states and municipalities and is administered by the three levels of Government.
The SUS offers a wide range of health services, including primary care, consultations with specialist doctors, examinations, hospitalizations, surgeries, and treatments for chronic diseases. The system also includes public health programs such as vaccination campaigns, disease prevention, and epidemic control.
Not to mention that SUS is responsible for promoting vaccination campaigns to prevent the spread of diseases and guarantee the health of the Brazilian population. Some of the vaccination campaigns promoted by SUS include:
- Yellow fever;
One of the best public healthcare systems in the world
Although the SUS faces some challenges, such as a lack of resources and insufficient healthcare teams in some regions, it is widely considered to be one of the best public healthcare systems in the world.
It provides access to quality healthcare to millions of people who could not otherwise afford private medical treatment.
Reasons to live in Brazil: stability in the face of natural disasters
Brazil has no history of earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural instability. Therefore, the country presents a peaceful place to live as it is stable in this sense.
In other countries, natural disasters are routine and even part of the culture of citizens. However, Brazil does not face this history.
Reasons to live in Brazil: favorable exchange rate for different countries
If you receive your salary in dollars, euros, or pounds, for example, you can benefit greatly from living in Brazil. This is because the exchange rate will be favorable since when transferring the value of your original currency to Brazil, it will be converted into reais.
As some currencies are worth more than the real, the total amount you will have in Brazil will allow you to live comfortably.
Reasons to live in Brazil: Brazilian passport accepted in 170 countries
Brazil has a great reputation internationally and has a passport accepted in 170 countries. This number changes monthly, but the Brazilian passport is among the 20 most accepted in the world without requiring a visa!
So, one more reason to live in Brazil. After all, after a certain period, you can obtain ordinary naturalization and a Brazilian passport.
Reasons to live in Brazil: High Quality of life indexes
Furthermore, Brazil has high levels of quality of life in different cities. This way, you can count on adequate infrastructure, as well as a mild climate and a wealth of resources. Therefore, living in Brazil is worth it if you take this information into consideration. Check out some examples of cities with high rates:
- Maringá – Paraná;
- Jundiaí – São Paulo;
- São José do Rio Preto – São Paulo;
- Piracicaba – São Paulo;
- São José dos Campos – São Paulo;
- Franca – São Paulo;
- Curitiba, Parana;
- Taubaté – São Paulo;
- Campinas – São Paulo;
- Vitória – Espírito Santo.
Possibility of adding working time from other countries to retirement
In short, you can add the time worked in Brazil with other countries. These other countries are those with which Brazil has international pension agreements.
If you come from one of the countries with an agreement with Brazil, you can add up!
You can add time working in other countries to retire in Brazil. This is regulated by Brazilian Social Security and there are international social security agreements between Brazil and many other countries that allow for mutual recognition of contribution time for retirement purposes.
However, to add time working in another country, it is necessary to meet some requirements, such as having worked and contributed to the social security system of the country in question for a minimum period of time.
Furthermore, it’s necessary to present proof of these contributions, such as certificates or declarations issued by the country in question.
Mercosur residence agreement and entry visa exemption
Those who live in Mercosur member countries can have the advantages and facilities to come to Brazil! Therefore, living in Brazil is worth it because of its location.
The Mercosur Residency Agreement is an agreement on the free movement of people between Mercosur member countries, which includes Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay.
Besides, according to the agreement, citizens of a member country can reside, work, and study in another member country without the need for a residence visa.
The Mercosur Residency Agreement also establishes entry visa exemptions for short trips, which means that citizens of a member country can enter another member country without the need for a visa, as long as the duration of the trip does not exceed 90 days per period of 180 days.
What are the disadvantages of living in Brazil?
The main disadvantages of living in Brazil are problems of social inequality and its effects, such as prejudice, and lack of urban planning in certain regions, among others. These are global problems, which affect practically every country in the world, including the United States and Europe.
Therefore, the ideal is for you to make a good analysis of the places you want to live in Brazil, get to know safe, well-planned neighborhoods and regions, as well as organize yourself financially to move – just as you should do anywhere in the world! That is, finding out if living in Brazil is worth it in your case.
Social inequality accentuates social problems in general, and this is the biggest disadvantage of living in Brazil.
There is a marked social inequality, in which 90% of the population lives up to R$3,500 per month, with 70% earning only up to 2 minimum wages. In other words, to be among the 10% who earn the highest salaries, you simply need to earn more than R$3500.00 per month.
Furthermore, as we mentioned, unfortunately, there is a portion of society that seeks conservatism, with repression of differences. But it is still a minority in the country and many foreigners report that they do not see these demonstrations taking place.
However, the problem exists and cannot be ignored – at the same time, you should know that there is a massive supportive, and welcoming population.
Finally, some parts of Brazil suffer from irresponsible exploitation of natural resources and a lack of urban planning, which result in landslides, dam collapses, and floods, for example. Therefore, it’s essential to search for safe places.
Brazil, the Latin power
For a foreigner to assess whether it’s worth living in Brazil, it’s necessary to consider the following points:
- It may be worth it for foreigners who are looking for a peaceful country, with climate stability and free public healthcare, who are paid in foreign currency with a favorable exchange rate, or who are looking for a quality of life and economy that is less developed than that of Brazil.
- However, it is important to be aware of the country’s social and environmental problems and carry out good moving planning to find a location that meets your needs and expectations.
- It’s also necessary to be aware of social inequality in the country, which accentuates social problems in general and can result in prejudice and a lack of urban planning in certain regions.
Therefore, it’s essential to make a good analysis of the places you want to live, knowing safe, well-planned neighborhoods and regions, in addition to organizing yourself financially to move.
Advogada, inscrita na OAB/MG sob o número 210.924 e graduada em Direito pela Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. Atua na Koetz Advocacia recepcionando novos casos no setor de Direito Migratório.Saiba mais