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Brazil was discovered by the Portuguese in the year of 1500. The king of Portugal, Dom Manuel I, sent a naval expedition to explore the new land. They arrived at Guanabara Bay on January 1, 1502. The Portuguese mistook the large bay for the mouth of a river (rio), and this is how the city earned its name - Rio de Janeiro.
One of Rio's most famous postcards is the view of the Sugarloaf and the Guanabara Bay, but this is just a small portion of it. It extends for 16 miles inland, with a width of up to 15 miles. The Bay is surrounded by historical attractions, dotted by islands, and the two largest cities in the State of Rio - Niteroi is just across the bridge.
If you come to Rio, one way or another you will run into Guanabara Bay. It is one of the prettiest sights, and it can be seen from both the city's most popular tourist attractions: The Sugarloaf and Corcovado Hill.
Tour operators offer you a chance to visit Guanabara Bay by boat or yacht, day or night. You may also take on your own the ferries to Niteroi or the Island of Paquetá (rent a bike once you get there).
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