Brazil is a country of enormous size. With that size comes an equally
enormous amount of diversity creating travel and tour opportunities
restricted only by ones limits of their imagination.. A good starting
point is the popular city of Rio de Janeiro and its magnificent Sugar
Loaf Mountain. A 1300 ft. rise between two bays via cable car lifts
you to a view which is truly breathtaking. Or the statue of Christ The
Redeemer, towering 2330 feet tall atop Corcovado Mountain
extending his arms as to hold the city of Rio.. Access to the top of the
mountain is readily available by either train or taxi and will again
reward you with a fabulous view from Mirante Point. If adventure and
eco-tourism appeal to you it’s as close as Rios Tijuca National Park,
the largest urban park in the world! Jeep tours are the most popular
taking you deep within the forest along precipitous terrain and
diminishing roads. Once inside you’ll marvel at the splendor of the
waterfalls, centuries old ruins, clandestine caves and outlandish
wildlife. And then there’s the beaches. The world famous
Copacabana and Ipanema beaches lie in the heart of Rio and are a
non-stop bustling of activity. Swimming, surfing, body boarding,
volleyball, frescobol, beach soccer, roller blading, bike riding,
jogging, tanning or simply strolling along the five kilometer boardwalk
of Copacabana into early evening when you’ll enjoy one of the most
dynamic yet tranquil sunsets along the beach of Ipanema.
Once the capital of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro (River of January) situates
itself along he Atlantic coast in the southeastern region. This urban
sprawl of over five million inhabitants of Cariocas as they are called
lies host to the world famous Carnival attracting over 2,000,000
visitors each year mostly for this lavish and colorful event. But
Carnival is not he only time to visit Rio. The year round travel
disciple will enjoy a replenishing supply of sights, sounds, thrills and
adventure found only in this unique corner of the world.
Architecturally resplendent yet uniquely diverse, Rio showcases its
prodigal high-rise, upscale living quarters, where sand meets sea,
immediately contiguous to and often times adjoining pint-sized flats.
famous landmarks adorn the area.
A big attraction for the many foreign visitors is the temperate climate. Often times associated with the tropics, Rios southern exposure accommodates its guests with ideal conditions for the outdoor recreationalist, and there is a galaxy of recreation. Guided tours are abundant and popular in Rio. Copious number of operators extends invitations to an assorted array of sights and thrills. Historic museums, churches and buildings such as the Imperial Palace or Metropolitan Cathedral can be combined into a day long event further encompassing the beaches of Copacabana, the Tijuca Forest, Cascatinha Falls, Corcovado Mountain and the Niteroi Bridge. Cap off the evening with dinner and a samba show at one of the many restaurants along the beaches. Many tours include a ride on the Aerial Tramway up Sugarloaf Mountain serving up a spectacular visual of the city, the bay, and the beaches. A well liked favorite is the water tours. Cruise to a tropical island, explore its deserted beaches, have lunch and cruise off to another island. Transportation is available also to Angra dos Reis, a crystal blue water resort where you can go sailing, diving and snorkeling around literally hundreds of small islands. The more serious adventurer can be led to the Rio Paraibuna for a memorable day of white water rafting, following it up with a trip to Sao Conrado for a tandem hang glide, wafting across the warm Atlantic winds, coming to a landing on a soft sandy beach.
Shopping in Rio can be really fun. If you’re looking to avoid the commercial malls, Ipanema offers numerous specialty shops and bikini boutiques. Depending on your taste and budget, fine jewelry, clothing, shoes, handbags, and chocolate can be discovered along Visconde de Piraja. Looking for a bargain, you might try the Hippie Fair on Sundays. This throwback from the 70’s features handmade crafts, art, leather, wood, local foods and drinks along with a plethora of souvenirs. Like to shop where locals shop? Check-out the farmers market on Friday mornings or fisherman’s corner near Copacabana where at sun up you can view the days catch as the local fishermen unload their harvest, you then pick out your evening meal, fresh from the Atlantic, and take it home.
If the days many activities have not completely exhausted you then catch your second wind because when the sun goes down the city heats up. Bars, lounges, night clubs, street parties light up the town with a frolic and fervor found in few other places. Take a samba lesson early in the evening, then along with your new found sun tan strut your gait till 4:00 A.M. Many smaller cafes and restaurants feature local performers with a more intimate setting. Often times free outdoor concerts are staged and can be a real treat on a balmy evening. Perhaps fine dining, a trendy restaurant or tucked away local eatery to start your evening, then off to the theater, concert hall or ballet. There are fun times in Rio for everyone regardless of age. Oh, and don’t forget…Carnival.