Favela tour

Trip Start Jun 22, 2013
Trip End Aug 27, 2013

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Where I stayed
The Art hostel

Flag of Brazil  , Rio de Janeiro,
Monday, June 24, 2013

Here we are, the 2nd day in Rio

We have a couple of things planned to do, a trip round the city and a trip to the favellas

I haven't seen anyone from the group this morning, I guess it was a really late night (or early morning) for them and the favella party, I don’t know if I missed anything though, but I really needed a bit of kip

The things I bought over (the crunchy bars, the Haribo and Branston were gratefully received), and I hope to be paid back in coffee, the breakfast weren’t up to much, but the coffee was pretty good

The weather hasn’t improved much though (I thought Rio was all sun and bright weather) still a rather overcast day

I guess I’ll add to this as the day wears on, so bear with me (I think I’ll be glad when the trip starts in earnest, as much as Rio seems a great city and the beach is nice, it will be good to get on the road)


Today In went on a favella tour, well that is what it was supposed to be, but first it was a hostel tour, going round to pick up others, this took a further 2 hours, but we did eventually gather everyone up

(I should let you know this isn’t any thing to do with Oasis Overland)

We drove to the top of the mountain, it had a name at some point I guess, but no one seems to know it now

The one we are visiting is now police controlled, after they drove out the drug dealers, but it still goes on, but not as much now, there are plenty of reminders of the gun battles that have gone on, bullet holes all around

It must have been a nightmare battle, there are back alleys, side streets and all kind of hiding places,

The whole place seems to be built on the side of the mountain and of course with mountains you get landslides and rock falls, and a lot of the homes get washed out, wrecked or just disappear

There are literally thousands living in this one, but there are several dotted around Rio, it’s not unusual to find a family of 15 in one 'home’ (I use this very loosely, they are not much more that stone, brick sheds)

There is open sewers and sewage flows quite freely on sort of drainage ditches, the smell could get pretty bad on a hot day, it seems to find its way down steps and just heads down, everywhere seems to have a water storage tank and satellite dish on the roof, I think there is some kind of pumped system to supply all these people, the power cables are a bit of a rats nest, and do bear a resemblance to those in Asia, god only knows how it all works, but no one seems to have a meter or any way of controlling the power (or paying for it)

There are still gangs that roam around, looking for the unwary, but I am glad to say I had no problems, so maybe with a group is the answer

A lot of the schools rely on handouts from visitors, it seems the kids either want to be a great footballer or a drug dealer (well the ones I spoke to did, what a career choice)

It was all downhill, now, the steps are all shapes and sizes, and very slippery,

We stopped at the local artist, he does various pictures of Rio and Brazil, very nice, but not the kind of pictures I would buy and hang at home, some people bought pictures, they seemed to like them

I even found a couple of hens, so I guess you can keep a couple of birds anywhere if you got the mind to

They seem to pile rubbish up anywhere, then when the pile gets too big, they burn it, so there are piles of charred rubbish all over

The guide told us all about these favellas, and to be honest, what he told us was rubbish

I did a bit of research when I got back to the hostel, they go back to the 19th century and were places soldiers built as they had nowhere else to live, slaves who had been released went to live here as well, but as things moved on, before the first favella came into being, poor citizens were pushed away from the city and forced to live in the far suburbs.

However, most modern favellas appeared in the 1970s due to rural exodus, when many people left rural areas of Brazil and moved to cities. Unable to find a place to live, many people ended up in a favella

But as far as I am concerned it can be wrapped up in a fancy name, but it’s a slum, just built on the side of a mountain, it gives the whole of Rio its cheap work/labor force, most do menial jobs and very low wages, most are just grateful for the work and money it brings in (I guess if you got 15 kids, anything is good really)

As per usual the kids are all holding their hands out (we are told not to give them money as begging isn’t a good thing for any age)

There isn’t much difference from this slum to those in Africa or India, the only difference I noticed there was a lack of BMW’s and Audi’s that dominate those in Africa (Kenya) and the lack of disease here, but the usual do still come up, (dysentery, )

If you really want to know more, try this link, it does give the full history of them; it is quite an interesting read



The people I was with on this tour arent in my Oasis group, they are just people we picked up on the hostel tour before the Favela tour started, it culminated in a 1 1/2 hour trip around the Favela and then an 1 1/2 trip to drop wm all off

Well it was 'interesting' as far as 'slum' tours go, but the place is better than most, certainly a lot less polluted than Kenya, even though they still have open sewers
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daryl on

Slums are slums everywhere. Having up to 15 kids does not exactly make for a comfortable lifestyle. Every affluent city seems to have its slum area which is a shame on us as a society...surely in this day........great pics, Rodney is quiet is he resting up for the big Oasis trip.

derrick241 on

couldn't take Rodney to a place like that, I couldn't watch him all the time

rossport on

thanks for the tour mate and yes a slum is a slum and like England in the 17th-19th century the poor all lived in slums and like this the better ones at the top and the poorer ones at the bottom of the sewer route, I wonder if they too sell their urine to make a living as did the slums of england to the tanning house's hence the old saying is you were piss poor as you could not sell it to the tanning places

derrick241 on

the people in this favela provide the city with its labour force, they do all the jobs no one wants, but the city would fall apart if they weren't there doing this jobs, they aren't necessarily poor, they just cant afford a house lower down, as its so expensive

IanC on

What a day to visit a favela - just when the police start a crackdown and there are protests going one.

Anne on

What a slum it really does show usw the way the other half live
Did ou forget Rodney

mmbcross on

I wonder what the favelados think of all the affluent tourists visiting their home turf? Surely it must be tempting to relieve these visitors of their wealth occasionally!

Jim on

Usual slave labour- they keep them that way so that the fat cats get fatter.

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