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The U.S. State Department discusses a variety of safety and security concerns within Brazil, but one of the most common areas where problems occur is at the beach.
Brazil’s beaches can pose a threat to the safety of travelers. Many beaches have very strong and dangerous riptides, including those in Rio de Janeiro and Fortaleza. Make sure to observe posted flags and signs for strong swells and currents, and never swim while under the influence of alcohol. Even if the water looks safe there may be strong riptides. Ocean currents and waves are unpredictable, even in well-populated beaches frequented by tourists. In 2011, one U.S. citizen suffered serious injuries and two died while swimming in Copacabana beach. Travelers are advised to adhere to local authorities’ guidance and refrain from swimming alone in areas marked with red warning signs or at beaches where there are no municipal lifeguards and first responder services. There is a possibility of shark attacks in the waters of many of the beaches in northeastern Brazil, including those in Recife, Natal, and Maceio. We advise visitors to heed signs posted on any beach they visit. Read more…
Due to the large disparity of incomes in Brazil, street crime and theft are a problem. It is important to be aware of your surroundings, particularly at night, and refrain from carrying your passport, large sums of money or wearing expensive jewelry. Taking steps to minimize the attention others place on you will alleviate attacks on your personal safety.
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