Rio de Janeiro has the second largest economy of Brazil behind only São Paulo state.
The state of Rio de Janeiro is located within the Brazilian geopolitical region classified as the Southeast (assigned by IBGE). Rio de Janeiro share borders with all the other states in the same Southeast macroregion: Minas Gerais (N and NW), Espírito Santo (NE) and São Paulo (SW). It is bounded on the east and south by the Atlantic Ocean.
Rio de Janeiro has an area of 43,653 km2. Its capital is the city of Rio de Janeiro, which was the capital of the Portuguese Colony of Brazil from 1763 to 1815, capital of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves from 1815 to 1822, and capital of independent Brazil from 1822 to 1960.
The state's largest cities are Rio de Janeiro, São Gonçalo, Duque de Caxias, Nova Iguaçu, Belford Roxo, Niterói, São João de Meriti, Campos dos Goytacazes, Petrópolis, Volta Redonda, Magé, Itaboraí, Macaé, Mesquita, Cabo Frio, Nova Friburgo, Barra Mansa and Angra dos Reis.
Rio de Janeiro is the smallest state in the Southeast macroregion and one of the smallest in Brazil. It has, however, the third longest coastline in the country (second only to those of Bahia and Maranhão).
In the Brazilian flag, the state is represented by the Beta star in the Southern Cross (β=Mimosa).