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Porto Seguro, Safe Haven of Bahia

By Joshua Rapp Learn, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO - In April 22, 1500, after nearly two months at sea, Pedro Álvares Cabral sighted land in the distance, and named the protruding hill Monte Pascoal. The hill was around 30km south along the red bluffs of the coastline from where Cabral eventually struck land and became the first European to set foot on present day Brazil.

It may have been more than just the calm sea around the mouth of the Bunharem River that inspired the Portuguese explorers to stop. Turquoise waters, golden sands and a stretch of virgin Atlantic rain . . .

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