Porto Velho

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Porto Velho
The Municipality of Porto Velho
Top left:Rondonia State Government Office, Top right:Port of Porto Velho, Middle left:Porto Velho Cultural House, Middle right:Sunset in Madeira River, Bottom:Panorama view of downtown from Pedrinhas area
Top left:Rondonia State Government Office, Top right:Port of Porto Velho, Middle left:Porto Velho Cultural House, Middle right:Sunset in Madeira River, Bottom:Panorama view of downtown from Pedrinhas area
Flag of Porto Velho
Official seal of Porto Velho
Location of Porto Velho in the State of Rondônia
Location of Porto Velho in the State of Rondônia
Porto Velho is located in Brazil
Porto Velho
Porto Velho
Localization of Porto Velho in Brazil
Coordinates: 8°45′43″S 63°54′14″W / 8.76194°S 63.90389°W / -8.76194; -63.90389Coordinates: 8°45′43″S 63°54′14″W / 8.76194°S 63.90389°W / -8.76194; -63.90389
Country  Brazil
Region North
State Bandeira de Rondônia.svg Rondônia
 • Mayor Mauro Nazif (PSB)
 • Total 34,082.37 km2 (13,159.28 sq mi)
Elevation 83 m (272 ft)
Population (2010 census)[1]
 • Total 426,558
Time zone UTC-4 (UTC-4)
Postal Code 76800-000
Area code(s) (+55) 69
Website Porto Velho, Rondônia

Porto Velho (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈpoʁtu ˈvɛʎu], Old Port) is the capital of the Brazilian state of Rondônia, in the upper Amazon River basin. The population is 426,558 people (as of the IBGE 2010 census). Located on the border of Rondônia and the state of Amazonas, the town is an important trading center for cassiterite, the mining of which represents the most important economic activity in the region, as well as a transportation and communication center. It is located on the eastern shore of the Madeira River, one of the main tributaries of the Amazon River. It is also Rondônia's largest city, and the largest state capital of Brazil (by area).

The municipality occupies most of the border between Amazonas and Rondônia, and is simultaneously the westernmost and northernmost city in the state.


This photograph shows an American laundry boss and his "Barbadian" workers, a term used generally to refer to Caribbean immigrants. The laundry in Porto Velho had a steam press, regarded as something of a luxury at the time.

Officially founded on October 2, 1914, Porto Velho was founded by pioneers around 1907, during the construction of the Madeira-Mamoré railroad. After the railroad was completed, the local population was about one thousand inhabitants; its buildings Arthur Oliveira were chiefly the railway's installations and the wooden houses of the Caribbean (mainly Barbadian) workers - hence the name of the town's largest district by then, "Bajan Hill" or "Barbados Town", nowadays called the "Alto do Bode".

During the first sixty years, the city's development was directly connected to the railway's activities. The town prospered during the rubber boom, but then when low-cost Malaysian rubber made rubber from the Amazon uncompetitive, the region's economy ground to a halt. Cities like Santo Antônio do Madeira, which had a tram line and a weekly newspaper by the time of Porto Velho's foundation, are nothing but ruins nowadays.

Porto Velho's survival is associated with the better conditions of the area where it was built, its easy access by the river and its harbor: these were all considerations in the choice of Porto Velho as the capital of the newly formed Federal Territory of Guaporé, in 1943. Only with the beginning of World War II was there another cycle of progress in the region. When the Allied forces lost control over the Malaysian rubber, Amazon's was needed due to the war effort. This produced what is known in Brazil as the "second rubber boom". But when the war ended, the region's economy once again came to a halt.

Porto Velho's modern history begins with the discovery of cassiterite around the city, and of gold on the Madeira River, at the end of the 1950s. In addition, the government's decision to allow large cattle farms in the territory began a trend of migration into the city. Almost one million people moved to Rondônia, and Porto Velho's population increased to three hundred thousand. This intense migration caused much trouble for the city. Among many other problems, the suburban boroughs, for example, are nothing but shanty towns.[vague]


Amazon Rainforest and Madeira River.


Porto Velho features a tropical monsoon climate (climate type Am) under the Köppen climate classification. The city features a short dry season that covers the months of June and July and a lengthy rainy season that covers the remaining ten months. September is also a relatively drier month, almost giving the city the appearance of having two separate wet seasons. However September is not quite a dry season month, seeing on average more than 60 mm of rain. Porto Velho is particularly wet from December through March, averaging roughly 300 mm of rain per month in each of these months. As with many cities with a tropical monsoon climate, Porto Velho temperatures tend to be relatively consistent throughout the course of the year, with average daily temperatures typically between 23 and 26 degrees Celsius.

Climate data for Porto Velho, Brazil
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 30.3
Daily mean °C (°F) 25.0
Average low °C (°F) 21.7
Precipitation mm (inches) 346.8
Source: World Climate [2]


The Amazon represents over half of the planet's remaining rainforests and comprises the largest and most species-rich tract of tropical rainforest in the world. Wet tropical forests are the most species-rich biome, and tropical forests in the Americas are consistently more species rich than the wet forests in Africa and Asia.[3] As the largest tract of tropical rainforest in the Americas, the Amazonian rainforests have unparalleled biodiversity.

More than 1/3 of all species in the world live in the Amazon Rainforest.[4]

The majority of the forest surrounding Porto Velho has been felled, however. [5]


The GDP for the city was R$ 3,656,512,000 (2005).[6]

The per capita income for the city was R$ 9,779 (2005).[7]


Panorama of Porto Velho as viewed from Pedrinhas neighborhood.


Porto Velho/Governador Jorge Teixeira de Oliveira International Airport.
Highway BR-364 near Porto Velho.

International Airport[edit]

Porto Velho International Airport, located seven kilometers from the city, has as its main access at the Av. Governador Jorge Teixeira de Oliveira, with two lanes. Buses from downtown run to the airport every hour, and there is a fleet of taxis serving only the airport. The airport is served by 98 scheduled flights weekly, most going to other large Brazilian cities. The presence of Porto Velho Air Force Base ensures considerable movement of military aircraft. The local people refer to Porto Velho International as Belmont Airport because it is located in this district. It became an international airport in 2002. It was built as a replacement to Caiari Airport, which was closed on April 16, 1969.


  • BR-174;
  • BR-317;
  • BR-319;
  • BR-364;
  • BR-421;
  • BR-425;
  • BR-429;
  • RO-010;
  • RO-101;
  • RO-490.


Federal University of Rondônia in Porto Velho.

Portuguese is the official national language, and thus the primary language taught in schools. But English is part of the official high school curriculum.

Well-known Colleges[edit]

  • Universidade Federal de Rondônia (Unir);
  • Instituto Luterano de Ensino Superior de Porto Velho (Iles-Ulbra);
  • Faculdade Interamericana de Porto Velho (Uniron);
  • Faculdade de Ciências Administrativas e de Tecnologia (Fatec-RO);
  • Faculdade de Ciências Humanas, Exatas e Letras de Rondônia (Faro);
  • Faculdade da Amazônia (Iesa);
  • Faculdade de Porto Velho/ Fundação Getúlio Vargas (FIP/FGV);
  • Faculdades Integradas Maria Coelho Aguiar (FIMCA);
  • Faculdade São Lucas;

Well-known Schools[edit]

  • Colégio Objetivo;
  • Classe A;
  • Escola Estadual de Ensino Fundamental e Médio João Bento da Costa;
  • Colégio Tiradentes da Polícia Militar;
  • Centro de Ensino Mineiro;
  • Proensino;
  • Instituto Laura Vicuña;
  • Instituto Estadual de Educação Carmela Dutra;
  • Colégio Dom Bosco
  • Centro Educacional Dr Gilberto Mendes De Azevedo


Casa da Cultura Ivan Marrocos in Porto Velho.


Agricultural event in Porto Velho.


Madeira-Mamoré Railway Museum (pt: Museu da Estrada de Ferro Madeira Mamoré)


Teatro Municipal, in Joaquim Nabuco Avenue (Downtown) and Teatro Uirassu Rodrigues, in José Bonifácio street.


  1. ^ [1] - IBGE/2011
  2. ^ "Climate Statistics for Porto Velho, Brazil". Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  3. ^ Turner, I.M. 2001. The ecology of trees in the tropical rain forest. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. ISBN 0-521-80183-4
  4. ^ Amazon Rainforest, Amazon Plants, Amazon River Animals
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ GDP (PDF) (in Portuguese). Porto Velho, Brazil: IBGE. 2005. ISBN 85-240-3919-1. Retrieved 2007-07-18. 
  7. ^ per capita income (PDF) (in Portuguese). Porto Velho, Brazil: IBGE. 2005. ISBN 85-240-3919-1. Retrieved 2007-07-18. 

External links[edit]