Amapá is the northernmost of Brazil’s coastal states, bordering French Guiana and Suriname. Spotted by Spanish caravels in the 1500s, the area now known as Amapá has, at different times, been colonized by the Spanish, the English, the Dutch, the French and, of course, the Portuguese, for a period being known as Portuguese Guiana, up until around the 1950s. It was only established as a Brazilian state in 1943, making it one of the newest additions to this list.

It has the second-most officially protected areas of conservation in Brazil—19 in total. Amapá has a variety of ecosystems, from ancient mangroves to dense tropical rainforests, large fields susceptible to seasonal flooding, and cerrado tropical savanna. Most of the state is contained by the Guiana Shield.

The region’s economic growth has recently increased migration to the state. Many immigrants come from neighbouring French Guiana—mainly from the municipality of Oiapoque—as well as from further afield in Brazil, in particular from states such as Minas Gerais, Goiás, Paraná, Pará, Ceará, and Maranhão.

Culturally, Amapá can be strongly likened to the rich cultural traditions of the Amazon rainforest, which mix indigenous, African, and Portuguese heritage.

Attractive tourist attractions include a trip to the Serra do Navio on the old railway, which permits an exceptional view of the Amazonian vegetation and fauna.

Macapá, the capital, is the only place in Brazil’s vast north that touches the immense Amazon River. In March and September, it is a great spot to witness the equinox (a moment when the earth’s two hemispheres have an equal amount of light and dark, with exactly 12 hours for each).

Another famous natural phenomenon worth seeing in Amapá is the Pororoca, which is the coming together of ocean water with that from the rivers and sees the creation of waves up to 5m in height. These locations, such as the Canal do Inferno da Ilha de Maracá, are hugely popular with daredevil surfers.

Amapá is one of Brazil’s least known and most underrated states, thanks to its fascinating natural wonders, with plenty to offer.

Frequently asked questions about Amapá

Some of the most frequently asked questions about this wonderful destination

The capital of Amapá is Macapá.
Amapá has an area of 142,470.762 km².
In Amapá, the population is 733,759 inhabitants (2022).
A person born in Amapá is called an "amapaense".
The dialing code in the Amapá region is 96.
Amapá borders Pará in Brazil, and internationally with French Guiana and Suriname.

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