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12 cities in Brazil ready for their World Cup moment

June 12, 2014, 7:43 a.m.
Manaus fisherman

Photo: Zemlinki!/Flickr

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Manaus

Manaus is the capital of the vast Amazonas state. Home to nearly 2 million people (2.3 in the metro area), this thriving city sits in the middle of the Amazon rain forest, about 900 miles from the Atlantic Coast. Manaus can be reached by plane and even by boat, but road connections with other major Brazilian cities are virtually nonexistent. Manaus is a hub for Amazon rainforest tourism and river cruises. Known as a laid back, friendly and colorful city, Manaus has one major drawback: the stifling heat and humidity. The conditions will be tough for players during the four group stage matches played at the city's Arena da Amazonia.