This Envisat image highlights the southeastern coast of Brazil, South America’s largest and most populous country.
Brazil’s federal district of Sao Paolo is visible in the left half of the image. Other than Sao Paolo, three out of Brazil’s twenty-six states comprise the southeastern region, including Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais and Espirito Santo.
The city of Sao Paolo, the capital of Sao Paolo state, is visible as the large beige area surrounded by greenery in the bottom left of the image. It is located some 70 km from the coast and roughly 350 km south of Rio de Janeiro.
This huge sprawling metropolis covers an area of nearly 1500 square km and is home to a population of just over 10 million, making it the most populous city in South America.
The city of Rio de Janeiro is visible as the beige area located on the coastline on the right side of the image where the water appears to flow inland. Famous for its varied topography, Rio de Janeiro sits between the ocean and the Serra da Mantiqueira Mountains (seen in dark).
The heart-shaped structure visible off the coastline is the island of Ilhabela, or Beautiful Island. This rain forest ecological reserve has 35 km of beaches, mountains over 2000 m high and over 400 waterfalls. The other large island located off the coast of Rio de Janeiro is Ilha Grande.
Envisat's Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) instrument acquired this image on 23 May 2008, working in Full Resolution mode to provide a spatial resolution of 300 metres.