Diving in Brazil, South America

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Brazil

Brazil's 5,000 miles of open coastline certainly boasts exquisite diving sites. One of which is Fernando de Noronha, situated 220 miles off the northeast coast. It has diverse and thriving marine ecology such as 15 different kinds of corals to pelagic fishes. Spinner dolphins also use the site as breeding ground. Be forewarned though that this is one of the most expensive diving sites in the world but the rewards are well worth the experience. Another must see wreck in Fernando de Noronha is the NaeL Ipiranga, a sunken corvette in 1987 resting at 60 meters in pristine condition.


Arraial Do Cabo, less than 200 km from Rio is mostly suited for the beginners because of its superior visibility good for viewing breathtaking wrecks, fascinating coral reefs and diverse marine life such as turtles and many kinds of fish. The Dona Paula, Harlingen, Herald, Imbetiba, Teixeirinha, Thetis, Tunamar and Wizard make up the popular wrecks near the shore which totals to 47 shipwrecks.

For beginners, the best time of the year for diving is from July to December while advanced divers have all year round.

Masses of manta rays can also be seen in another popular diving site, the Laje de Santos Marine Park near Sao Paulo in the south.

Summer waters ensure visibility of more than 25 meters and best spent on discovering marine life in the clear waters of the Abrolhos Archipelago boasting of the greatest chains of coral reefs in the South Atlantic. Based on scientific research, it's only here where you can find the type of coral reef pinnacle prevalent in Abrolhos waters. Whale watching in the Abrolhos during the mating season is best seen from July to November when the average visibility ranges from 10 to 20 meters and 26°C as average temperature.

 
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Marine Conservation

Fernando de Noronha is a national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. It's rich waters are of vital importance for the breeding and feeding of tuna, hammerhead shark, turtle, billfish and other marine mammals. This ensures the protection of the most diverse concentration of marine life in the South Atlantic from vibrant corals to extensive mangrove forests that shelter hundreds of species.

Climate

Brazil has mostly tropical but temperate climate in the south.

Brazil has an all year round diving season with water temperatures ranging from 23°C (July-Sept) to 25°C (Jan-March).

Natural hazards include floods and occasional frost in the south.

How to Get there

The main important hubs for domestic and international travels are: São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília. They are not situated within the main city of Rio but they all offer shuttle services going to Rio.

Brasília International is the closest airport to the capital city located 7 miles south. Buses regularly operate to the city with 30 minute journey time while taxis take only 15 minutes.

To cater tourists, the Brazil Air Pass was created. Use this system to take advantage of easy transportation within Brazil as air travel is considered to be faster and safer than road trips.

Brazil has plenty of Bus services but they are overcrowded during rush hours and not safe at night due to crimes. On the one hand, São Paulo has a 5-line metro subway system, and Rio has a 2-line metro. The trains are clean, safe, economical and reliable.

Another favourable option is by ferries which serve the coastal areas and touted to be faster and more efficient than road travel.

Use the following links for more information about;

- Decompression Chambers in Brazil

- Foreign Travel Advice for Brazil (UK Government)

- More about Brazil (Wikipedia)

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