As part of my Rio Carnival and São Paulo trip to Brazil earlier this year, I made my way up north to the city of Manaus — known as the door to the Amazon Rainforest. Manaus, also referred to as the Heart of the Amazon, is the capital and largest city of the Brazilian state of Amazonas. The seventh-largest city in Brazil sits near the confluence of the Rio Negro and Solimões river — just a few kilometres to its east.
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Affectionally known as Sampa, the Brazilian city of São Paulo, the biggest metropolis in the country, has South America's largest and most culturally diverse population. Paulistanos, the name given to the city's inhabitants, make up an urban population of over 12 million souls (21+ million if counting Greater Sao Paulo). It's home to the largest Portuguese-speaking city in the world — around 50% of which holds full or partial Italian ancestry. Paulistanos are also natives to over 200 countries — including the largest concentration of people of Japanese descent outside of Japan.
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