Finally Arrived in Rio

Trip Start May 31, 2008
Trip End Jun 01, 2009

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Flag of Brazil  , State of Rio de Janeiro,
Tuesday, June 10, 2008

After 24 hours on the plane and then catching a 6 hour bus to Rio from Sao Paulo, we finally arrived on the 11th and we were glad to start our adventure.  We decided to spend the first day wondering around the beaches in Rio.  The day was a bit overcast (but still 21 C!), so we did not get to see the usual Copacabana revelers (ie the dental floss bikini) .  The beach was amazing, especially all the men playing volleyball with their feet, and the Cristo  Redentor overlooking the city was also quite the site.  We wandered to Lagoa Rodngo de Freitas (a Lagoon), a very picturesque spot in the centre of Rio.  It was a very nice way to spend our first day in Brazil.

The next day we were fortunate to get very nice weather - clear, and so sunny and hot.  We went up to see the Christ on top of Corcovado.  The flowers and huge trees on the way to the Christ were gorgeous, and the views from the top did not disappoint.  We even got to see a great bird~s eye view of the Lagoon where we walked the previous day.  The sheer size of the Christ was amazing, and the expression on his face is what everyone talks about.  Our next stop was Sugar Loaf.  There was a samba band playing hopping music at the top of the first station, and the next station had the million dollar views of Copacabana, Cristo, and the Rio skyline.  

Our last big event in Rio was watching a local soccer match at Maracana.  We went with two Brazilians from the south of Brazil.  They were excellent tour guides and interpreters.  The soccer match was lively, but the biggest attraction by far was the old man yelling, swearing, and overly exerting himself during the game.  He was so animated that most of the tourists watched him more than the players.  Bruno said there is always an old man like this at the game - but it's even funnier when the loud fan is an old woman!  Also, going to Maracana gave us a taste of the other side of Rio - the non-touristy, dirtier, and sketchier side.

We got back to our hostel and chatted with our new Brazilian friends.  We learned some Portuguese phrases (I don't eat beef was a good one.), and talked more about our trip plans.  It was an excellent way to end our stay in Rio, and I even got tips on what to have for breakfast.  I have to say I am enjoying eating coconut cake every morning.  A bit different from the fiber cereal and sugar free yogurt I used to have.
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