Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro Travel Blog

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Happy Birthday Hamish

So it's a slow start to the day and as it's the last day of tour we have to pack everything up nice. Then it's on the road to Rio, we stop once to do a truck clean and then get in to Rio during a rain storm. We check in to our hotel and sort our gear out. Hamish and Katie turn up and I head over to Copacabana for a couple of drinks for Hamish's 30th. Meet up with a couple of others at a hostel and have a couple of beers before going out to a all ya can eat place. Then it's back to the hostel for Hamish's birthday cake. I decide to head back to my hotel before it gets too late. But still have an interesting taxi ride, but I make it home safely.

Today it's up and down to brekky at the hotel and then it's off on a tour of the Favela. This is basically the slum district of Rio.

Favela slums....
Real interesting to see how these people make the most of what they've got. Stop at one of the churches there where the kids are real taken with my bald head and my sunnies. Thought I was about to lose the sunnies but they gave them back after all trying them on. Then it's back to the hotel to regroup, a few of us then decide to head to Sugarloaf but after receiving the completely wrong directions we go to see Christ the Redeemer instead. We catch the clog train up the hill where we get some wicked views of Rio before the cloud rolls in. Then it's back to the hotel where a few us again head out to one of the Carnival street parties just down the road. It's a real cool atmosphere with lots of local music, food and drinks. Everyones real friendly and we have a great time till the rain comes.
Christ the Redeemer
It came hard too. No where really to hide so end up mostly wet. Finally call it a day round 2am.

It's up and brekky again where me, Paul, Cos, Tash and Bev decide to for a bit of a walk around the local area. We end up in the middle of a street party with music, food and drink again, we feel it'd be rude not to join in so grab a couple of beers. It's madness, can hardly move through the mass of people. And there's some sights to see, a lot of guys dressed in drag!! We stop at the Metropolitan Cathedral and have a look round before heading back to hotel and heading up to the bar. We all meet here before going to a football game, Botofogo vs Vasco, at Maracana stadium. The stadium hosted the 1950 World Cup final and seated 199500 people but now only seat around 100000.

Marcarana Stadium
But we watch a real good game which Botofogo take out 3-2, all but one goal being scored right in front of us. Awesome atmosphere with big huge flags and flares, crazy!

Once again it's up and out with Lucy, Tash and Bev. We head over to Copacabana to meet up with Hamish and Katie, but miscommunication mean we don't catch up with them so we head out to Ipanema Beach and have a look round. Walk down the beach and look at some markets before having a pretty nice lunch at a flash restaurant. Then it's back to the hotel for drinks before the Sambadrome. Now all those that have seen Rio Carnival on TV etc the Sambadrome is the big parade with all the floats. Some are the floats are amazing and the dancing and costumes are unreal.

Float at the Sambadrome
There's a continuous stream of floats and dancers from about 10pm till 4am when we left, apparently the last one came through at around 5am. It's a huge party atmosphere and everyones real friendly, even the rain couldn't put a dampener on things. This is a must do, totally awesome!!!

The next day I'm up a bit late and sort out some admin stuff before  a few of us head up to San Theresa for dinner, we get caught in yet another street party and then find that everything's pretty much shut. We end up finding a pizzeria which is basically someones house. We sit in their courtyard and watch them prepare in a normal kitchen, pretty random stuff.

Today it's off to Copacabana and a walk down the beach to see the sights. Have the obligatory beer walking down the beach. Have to go to some more markets so Tash can finish her shopping list. Then it's a farewell dinner as most people are leaving the next day. So it's off to all you can eat again. After that a few of us head down and watch people enter the Gay Ball. Quite some sights I can tell you!!

The next day I spend packing and dropping my bag off to where I'll stay when I come back in a couple of days. Meet up with Mark, Narissa & Holly and show them the Haviana shop, grab some lunch and head back to hotel. Chill out, meet Mel and Andy's new passengers and head out for dinner.

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Happy Birthday Hamish
Happy Birthday Hamish
Favela slums....
Favela slums....
Christ the Redeemer
Christ the Redeemer
Marcarana Stadium
Marcarana Stadium
Float at the Sambadrome
Float at the Sambadrome
Float at the Sambadrome
Float at the Sambadrome
Float at the Sambadrome
Float at the Sambadrome
Bev, Tasha, me and Lucie on Copaca…
Bev, Tasha, me and Lucie on Copac…
Ahhh Rio!
Ahhh Rio!