The ultimate as in "last", "there are no more", "that's it", "finito", for Brasil vacations we did over the Easter week end: Rio de Janeiro. I head back to Oregon landing on May 24th and Sue follows shortly thereafter (well, she's not really short) on June 8th.
Sue has been lucky finding really great places to stay on "airbnb", "Home Away From Home", etc. These sites are where you can rent someone's home, vacation house, etc. usually at a rate that is far less than the typical "yes, we will take your first born" upscale hotel price and often with features such as a kitchen, private area, etc. and maybe even a pool.
Not this time.
I would give this place 0.5 Stars and that is only because there was a roof over our heads. We later found that the place was right next to a favela and not a place to walk about after nightfall. The place was right across the street from the Sheraton and the place did have a great view across the way to the ocean that we enjoyed all of 7 minutes each day. That's all we wanted to stay inside there.
Took no photos of the place. Had zero desire to document or even admit we stayed there.
Awakening in our hell hole of an abode, we did not want to have breakfast there, so we ambled across the street to the Sheraton figuring we'd do breakfast there. Hello? What was that price per person? Did you say 57 Reals? (quick calculation that is $25.57 U.S.) For ONE person? But I only have coffee, toast and some fruit. Pass, thank you. Off to Christ the Redeemer. We'll find something there.
As pretty much everyone knows, "Christ the Redeemer" or Corcovado statue is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Rio. We were advised to buy tickets online ahead of time. Good thing we did. When we arrived early there was a line stretching down the sidewalk. Not wanting to chance getting there we took a taxi, one of the few times we didn't explore the bus route. More fun and challenging.
Walk around for breakfast. It's Good Friday. Some things were closed, but we noticed few if any places to grab a bite. Next to the train station to the top of the mountain was a museum, NAIF Museum. That we would explore later. I noticed a small sign on the Museum wall: Cafe. SCORE!. Lovely quiet picturesque area. Not crowded. Good coffee and a bite.
When we returned to the train departure area we noticed a sign: "Next train 6:00", which meant everything was sold out until then. The train ride to the top was about 30 minutes with a stop or two to allow the passing of other direction trams.
Photo www.tvsd.org www.stanford.edu
After taking the train to the top there was still a long way to get to the statue. Luckily we got to the elevator line at the right time as there was almost no wait. Exiting the elevator there were still 2 to 3 flights of stairs to climb.
I do not do crowds well. It is Good Friday. It is a holiday. This place is elbow to elbow, arse to arse, crowded. Oh, and add to that a temp in the mid 80's and humidity. Sue wanted to walk around and see the vistas. I plopped down at the base of the statue in the shade with a "I'll be right here."
And yah, we did the "hands outstretched" photo as did just about everyone up there.
Right next door was the NAIF Museum (Brazilian Native Art). These words from the gobrazil.about.com website: The result of a couple's love for the spontaneous, self-taught art form known as naïve art, the museum was founded by Lucien Finkelstein, a Frenchman who adopted Brazil as his home country, and his Brazilian wife, Mariza Campos da Paz. They devoted several decades to amassing their collection, taking rickety taxis to the top of mountains and leaving guided tours to search for artists in remote places.
I've often thought about "Trigger Memories", that something that dredges up a memory from the vast bottom of long forgotten reservoir of things past. The NAIF museum brought up a visit I did over 40 years ago to Bennington, Vermont where I first saw "Grandma Moses" primitive art. Had forgotten about that until I saw the primitive or native art at the NAIF Museum. There are over 6,000 pieces of art and I think we saw most of them!!
Some of the paintings and a couple of wall murals near the museum.
The main thoroughfare goes by the beach and I'm sure we walked every inch of the Copacabana, Ipanema, and LeBlon beaches including a lunch at an outdoor cafe. As a cyclist I was envious of the separated bike lanes that ran along side the beach. Another day.
These few photos don't do the beaches justice plus somehow I lost a bunch of beach photos. As with anything today the internet has more than enough information. For example:
Or take a look here: Rio Images
A couple of beach scenes that caught my eye:
On both Saturday and Sunday there were markets galore. No pics. But if you want to read about the Rio markets: CLICK HERE TO READ ALL ABOUT IT--> Rio Markets
One last "To See" in Rio: The Botanical Garden was a nice relaxing way to spend part of the last day in Rio. Luckily for us the day turned a bit overcast and cooler driving away the heat and humidididity.
Yes, we looked at every and anything we could to stay away from going back to the dreaded "place" we rented. Chalk it up to an experience and a memory of that not favorable kind.
Rio on the other hand is a place to visit again me thinks.
And of course the "selfies" from a different perspective. I do think "We'll Be Back"