Sunday, April 14, 2013

Brazil: Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Porto Alegre

Hello from South America! I began my trip in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil a week ago. As soon as we checked-in at our hostel, we went straight to the foot of Corcovado. But we had to abort our trip up the Cristo Redentor since it was really cloudy and the tram ride isn't cheap. We didn't want to waste funds and see nothing up there.

Copacabana Beach
So we ended up spending the afternoon in Copacobana Beach, and later enjoying the view of Sugarloaf Mountain in Botafogo Beach. The Mouth of Guanabara Bay, Sugar Loaf Natural Monument and Copacabana Seafront are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea. Here are photos of the first day: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (April 7, 2013).

Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer)
For our second day, we gave Corcovado another try. And we were in luck! Obviously, everyone wants to see the Cristo Redentor! We had to wait two hours for a slot on the tram up Corcovado, the peak where the statue of Christ the Redeemer is located. And since the area up the peak is quite small, you'll have to deal with the crowds. And yes, everyone wants a photo too! But your trip to Rio is never complete without it.

Ipanema Beach
We spent the afternoon at the beach again. We first stopped by Leblon Beach before proceeding to Ipanema Beach. Carioca Mountain Range - Tijuca National Park (and Cristo Redentor) is also part of the UNESCO inscription of Rio de Janeiro. Here are photos of the second day: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (April 8, 2013).

Theatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro
Arcos da Lapa, Rio de Janeiro
For our last day in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, we walked around the Centro. It's an intelligent mix of old and modern architecture. Plus there's an abundance of public open spaces. Here are photos from our third day: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (April 9, 2013).

Patio do Colegio, Sao Paulo
That evening, we took a bus to São Paulo, a six-hour trip. We arrived early the next morning and spent half a day in São Paulo. Good thing they have a reliable Metro, we got around the downtown area very easily. Here are photos from São Paulo, Brazil (April 10, 2013).

Museu de Arte do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre
By lunch, we left for Porto Alegre, the capital and largest city in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul. It was a good eighteen hours to get there! And we arrived the next morning. One of its main attractions is the Mercado Publico where we spent a considerable amount of time exploring its various stalls. I was particularly intrigued by the Gaucho stalls. We also walked to the Metropolitan Cathedral and explored buildings in the vicinity. Here are photos from Porto Alegre, Brazil (April 11, 2013).

Since I'm constantly on the road, it will be difficult to update the blog regularly. But you're sure to get daily updates from my Instagram and Twitter accounts. So do follow @ivanhenares on both.

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