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Caratinga

Caratinga is a municipality in eastern Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The population in 2009 was 85,472 inhabitants and the total area of the municipality was 1251 km2. The altitude is 578 meters above sea level, with maximum altitude of 1,516 m in the Serra do Rio Preto and 330 m at the mouth of the Córrego Boachá.LocationThe municipality is located at 19° 37’ 30’’ latitude south and at 42° 09’ 00’’ longitude west. It is part of Region VIII, denominated Rio Doce, and part of the microregion of Mata de Caratinga, in the eastern part of Minas Gerais.It lies on the important Rio-Bahia interstate highway (BR 116) and is connected to the state capital of Belo Horizonte by BR–381 to the city of João Monlevade. After João Monlevade there is a federal highway, BR 262, which leads into the capital. The state capital lies at a distance of 320 km. The nearest airport is in Ubaporanga 15 km from downtown, tarmacked runway 1200 m long and 20 m wide.The main rivers that cross the municipality are the Caratinga River and its tributary Laje, the Manhuaçu and the Preto.Origin of the nameThe name arose because of the lack of diversified food in the region, which made the first settlers eat a common tuber found in the region of São Sebastião do Batatal called caratinga, name of indigenous origin.ClimateThe climate is tropical sub-hot, with mild summer temperatures and winter temperatures between 15 and 18 °C. The average temperature is around 23 °C, while the maximum and the minimum are 28 °C and 17 °C respectively. In the summer season the concentration of rains is over 70% of the total annual rainfall, which is about 1.140 mm.
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