Rio De Janeiro

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Sightseeing in Rio De Janeiro

Rio’s sightseeing brochure is a visual feast. Called ‘the marvellous city’ by its people, it isn’t just because of the atmosphere but the beautiful natural settings too. Notable is the superb harbour overlooked by the Sugar Loaf Mountain and further above by the Hunchback Peak.

The skyline of the city is fascinating with these mountains, particularly the Baia de Guanabara. The statue of Christ the Redeemer stands on the Hunchbeak Peak. The Sugar Loaf Mountain is accessible by cable car and the Hunchback by cog train. The peaks have gorgeous views and are flocked by tourists through the day, so its best to avoid late mornings and early evenings.

The Copacabana and Ipanema beaches are the landmarks of this fun city. The other beaches you must do are Botofago, Flamengo, Leme, Arpoador, Leblon, Vidigal, Pepino and Barra da Tijuca. Sometimes, swimming at Ipanema can be dangerous because of the undertows and strong waves. Each beach has its own identity reflected in the people, ways of life and fashion statements.

Rio has several museums and you can spend days browsing in them. Worthy of interest are The Museu Nacional and Museu de Fauna in Quinta da Boa, Museu Nacional de Belas Artes with 800 original paintings and sculptures, Museu da Imagem e do Som with its collection of many photographs of Brazil and modern Brazilian paintings, Museu da Republica with exhibits of historical paintings and the history of Brazil and the Museo do Folclore Edison Carneiro that has a well selected and arranged display of ceramic figures representing everyday life in Brazil.

Among the many monuments, the Nossa Senhora da Gloria, built in 1791, is a beautiful church on the Gloria Hill with excellent remains of blue-faced Brazilian tiling. The church of Nossa Senhora da Penha has a staircase of 365 steps carved into bare rock. In October, pilgrims ascend these stairs on their bare knees. The church of Sao Sebastio built in 1936 in Tijuca contains the tomb of the founder and first governor of Rio de Janeiro.

The city administration has invested a considerable amount of time and money on the parks in Rio. The Botanical Gardens were founded in the early 19th century and houses an excellent herbarium, aquarium and library. If you are a bird enthusiast, visit the park early in the morning. Parque Laje near the Botanical Gardens has small grottoes, an old tower and lakes among the many trees.

Jardim Zoologico has a collection of Brazilian and imported animals and an aviary. Apart from the parks mentioned above, there are several others, some close to the bus terminus and the railway station.


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