Rio’s Redeeming Feature!
Brazil is an interesting country. Its most famous and second largest city, Rio De Janeiro is a location of contrasts. The have’s and have nots mingle daily in its streets and their interaction dominates daily life.
Rio is fortunate to have some of the most famous attractions in the world. It has two of the most famous beaches – Copacabana and Ipanema, where you can soak up the sun and witness the importance of beach life to Brazilian culture. There are always games of beach volleyball and soccer taking place amongst the bronzing bodies.
Rio is home to the Maracanã football stadium which has witnessed some of the greatest football matches ever seen and host to arguably the most successful international football team of all time- Brazil. Five-time soccer World Cup Winners!!!!!
Its Carnival is the largest in the world. Held each year before lent it features 2,000,000 people per day on the streets!
More than 200 samba schools take part each year and the city lights up to their extravagant floats, performances and costumes. Truly a sight to behold.
But, and here’s the rub. Rio is also home to the “Favelas”.
Favela is Portuguese for slum and it’s fundamentally a low-income area – very, very low income! Rio’s favelas look down upon the city from the surrounding hillsides and its inhabitants are largely responsible for the crime and violence that the city and its tourists endure.
Rio is a very dangerous place and you as a tourist must be aware of it. Jewellery (rings etc), watches. wallets, phones etc should all be removed and left in your hotel safe or discretely hidden. There is no walking down dark streets in the early hours after a night of clubbing! Common sense and an awareness of a deteriorating crime situation is essential for a visit here.
You must take care!!
However, if you can see past the crime and potential for violence and visit Rio, it will reward you with probably the most spectacular sight you will ever see for as long as you live.
The statue of Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer) on Mount Corcovado is simply incredible. Perched high on a ledge with the city below, whether you are of religious persuasion or not- it will take your breath away and leave you lost for words!
Forget the pyramids (dirty, filthy and squalid surroundings) this is sight numero uno as far as we are concerned!
It truly deserves its place in the “Seven New Wonders of The World”.
We would recommend initially seeing the statue from a helicopter. Trips from “Sugar Loaf” Mountain leave regularly and a 15 minute flight will circle the statue twice before returning along Copacabana beach to land.
The statue, can be seen in the distance in this image.
The views from your helicopter are simply spectacular.
Once you’ve landed and got your breath back it’s time to get up close and personal and visit the site. Twenty minutes by cab and a short walk will take you to the base of the statue.
It’s quite a site. Completed in 1931 and made of reinforced concrete, clad in triangular soapstone tiles, it stands 30 metres tall and has a hand span of 28 metres. It’s the largest Art Deco statue of Jesus Christ in the world and was created by French sculptor Paul Landowski and built by Brazilian engineer Heitor da Silva Costa, in collaboration with the French engineer Albert Caquot.
Romanian sculptor Gheorghe Leonida fashioned the face. It took 9 years to build and was completed in 1931.
Christ the Redeemer is meant to signify that Christ loves all and will embrace all. It’s a pity that some of the local inhabitants don’t adhere to that same vibe as he’s there looking down on them every single day to remind them -all they need do is look up!
A week in Rio will enable you to enjoy all that it has to offer, safely. We went in June and the weather was lovely. Rio can often be covered in cloud, obscuring views of the statue so be aware.
We’re glad we ticked this phenomenal site off our “To do List” and urge you to do the same. The “Christ the Redeemer” Rio experience will not leave you disappointed.