Most outsiders know the names Rio De Janeiro and São Paulo, but few have heard of Recife--even though it is the fourth-largest city in Brasil with over 1.5 million inhabitants. Less crowded and cosmopolitan than its more famous counterparts, Recife has a certain charm about it that quickly sucks you in. From its beautiful sprawling white sand beaches, to its busy city center, to its quaint neighboring fishing villages, Recife's people, landscape, and culture are one-of-a-kind.

Recife's name was derived from the Portuguese word for reef, referring simply to the city's situation behind a long and protective coastal reef. 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. Often called the Venice of Brazil for its many canals, bridges, and tiny one-way streets, Recife is a wonderful city in which to wander about, letting chance provide a memorable discovery or two.

One thing's for sure--one visit to Recife is sure to provide memories to last a lifetime.

Your friends in Recife are waiting for you...

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