The Guanabara Bay bathes the city of Rio de Janeiro, the 2nd biggest city in Brazil, in terms of extension. In the past, this bay’s shore was occupied by Indian tribes of the Amazon, which baptized it.

The Portuguese landed on the bay on the January 1st of 1502 and it is thought that they believed it was a river mouth (at the time, the bay’s entrance was larger than it is today).

As it was discovered in January, and they thought it was a river.

So they gave it the name of Rio de Janeiro (River of January).

Later on, the French arrived as well, however, after a couple of battles, the Portuguese emerged as winners and expelled them from the city. They built the bay’s first fortified city, whose name was São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro.

At the time, the King of Portugal was Dom Sebastian I (Sebastião) and so the name Rio de Janeiro was chosen in his honor. The regent queen, his grandmother Queen Catherine of Austria, was the one who gave the order to build a city around the Guanabara Bay.

When I visited this city I understood the reason why they call it marvelous. A visit is totally worth it.