Weather was not the kindest for our visit to the pulsating city of Rio de Janeiro – with a climate on the first few days that even a Lancastrian would complain about.
However even without the opportunity to see the fruits of the labour of the ‘plastic surgery capital of the world’ on the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema (which we found impossible to think about without humming the tune) this large and pulsating city served as a wonderful welcome to South America.
Day one – a bumpy bus ride down from bohemian Santa Teresa into the City Centre and a wander round. Managed to get lost trying to find the waterfront and were stopped from entering what we think was a military area for wearing shorts (though my Portuguese is a little rusty so it might have been for something else entirely).
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We then managed to find a place for a ‘light lunch’ where you collected your food for a massive buffet and then paid based upon the weight of your plate! The manager was the only one who could speak English so we got great customer service.
With a combination of waterproofs and a comedy local umbrella we made our way up from Lapa back to Santa Teresa via some wonderful steps decorated with tiles from around the world (including a 4 tile Simpsons one!) and then up through the shabby chic ex-colonial buildings of ST and kooky craft and art shops.
Words by Rew, Pics by Niki