Sydney - Rio
Trip Start Aug 31, 2007
51Trip End Ongoing
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We werenīt feeling too jetlagged on our first day, so went for a long walk along Copacabana & Ipanema beaches ... about 10kms round trip! The weather was great and it was a saturday, so all the families were out and the beaches were really crowed. We stopped at one of the many little stalls along the beach and had fresh coconut juice, then later stopped for lunch in a little cafe, where we had no idea what anything was ... we just pointed & hoped for the best!
After a quick afternoon nap, we went wandering again and came across a little brazilian churrascharia restaurant where all the meat is grilled on a massive bbq in the middle of the restaurant
The weather was a bit overcast on Sunday, so we skipped the beach & went into central ... which felt a bit dodgy as everything was closed & there werenīt many people around ... everyone was still in bed or at church! We came across a weird park full of cats and massive ecuadorian rats ... very odd! We walked & walked & walked ... it got busier as time went on ... walked passed the Outback Steak House around lunch time but thought it was silly to go to an aussie restaurant in brazil ... So went to a pizza joint instead! We walked a bloody long way, about 15kms if not more, all the way back to Copacabana.
On Sunday night we went to a local soccer match at the Maracana stadium between Vasco de gama and Fluminense. Vasco fans definitely outnumbered the Fluminense supporters and they were very, very passionate! We managed to get to the stadium ok, but had no idea what to do once we got there. The ticket guys didnt speak any English, so we bought two tickets & followed the crowd. We managed to find someone who told us where we were supposed to sit (which was anywhere!) and went looking for seats
We woke on monday to find that the sun was shining, so we went visit the Big Jesus. He is at the top of a massive hill, and overlooks the whole of Rio ... which is a pretty big place! There were heaps of people up there & it was a bit hazy so the view wasnīt as great as it could have been. Still very impressive though! We spent the rest of the day down at the beach people watching & drinking beer ... every few minutes a little vendor man comes along selling what ever you may need ... t-shirts, sarongs, beer, peanuts, chips, anything at all! They arenīt pushy like in some other countries, just say no & they move right along.
We had to move hotels on Tuesday to the place that the tour started from. We were expecting the new hotel to be a bit dodgy, but if the rest of the hotels on the tour are as nice as this, weīll be very very happy
We met our tour group in the evening, 12 in all, plus our guide, a german guy called Andreas. Mostly Aussies with one Irish, 2 English and 2 Austrians. After our briefing, we all went out to dinner to an all you can eat place & got to know each other. Everyone is doing different length tours, with our tour being the longest. They all seem like a lovely bunch of people so far!