Sunday, January 31, 2010

Rio de Janeiro part 2

Continuation of my previous post about Rio de Janeiro.

Day 4th
So this was the last day of 2009 and it turned out that we were going to celebrate the coming of 2010 with a big feast. So everyone was suggested to cook something from their country/region. The cooking went on for hours and then dinning went on for some more. It was greatest collaborative effort on cooking I had participated yet and also the biggest number of international cuisines in the same meal i.e from 5 different countries!


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro


In the evening was the most awaited celebration of New year eve at the Famous Copacabana beach. As per wikipedia about 2 Million people get together to welcome the new year here. Just imagining that got me super excited. The one time when I saw a cricket stadium full of people I was astonished so I knew this was gonna be big.

Well we started from Maira's place about 9 PM with all those delays waiting for about 5 girls to get ready :D and as lots of departing photographs and good byes as other Couchsurfers were leaving permanently. Anyways by this time it turned out the buses have decreased frequency and the roads being full of water and traffic caused lots of delay, we somehow reached Niteroi stop in 1 hour. Now from Niteroi to Rio was another pain as no one would agree to go (for no apparent reason but traffic). Again some ad-hoc arrangement by Maira (needed Portuguese definitely) and we got a mini-van agreed to dropping us rt at a metro station. The clock was ticking fast it was already about 10:45.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



Now the best part, it turns out that at this point the Metro tickets are not sold and you can only use the prepaid tickets which fortunately Maira had bought for the other CSers and who didn't collect from her :) So we got into the Metro! Wow what a relief. Of course the metro were as you would see Mumbai locals but with doors closed. Not an inch to move (well not really) and the crowd all super excited. I could almost felt like being in India during Ganesh Vijarsan, lots of noise, shouting, singing etc. And when the door would open for the people to get in everyone would say "Why, why" in portuguese.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro

We made it on time just about 10-15 minutes before 00:00 we reached the beach and OMG it was superb. Lots of people every where. The lightings from the buildings right across the roads look beautiful as did the well lit beach. The fireworks then begin at dot moment and Wow almost like those in Opening ceremonies of international sporting events mesmerized everyone. We watched and watched as they went on for next 10 minutes. I could totally agree Revillion in Brazil is one of the best new year parties in the world. Of course they had beer and Caiparinhas sold every 50 fts and at 3-5 Reals a glass and even with all that supply by about 4 AM everything was gone!

From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro


Day 5th/1st:
Next day was pretty laid back from the last nights party. However as we were about to leave Rio, I and Jake decided to visit Christo. The timings etc didn't work out and after spending almost 3.5 hrs transiting we were on our way to meet others at the Niteroi's beach. Not to realize we were walking on "Rua Rio Blanco" and we almost got mugged as a guy approached us very rapidly and we had to run across the road through the traffic for safety.

From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



Niteroi's beach was pretty cool. Not very rocky or dirty and the much more safe (or may be because we were in a big group). Maira then showed us a bit of Sao Gancalo city through a car tour.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro
Day 6th/2nd:
As we missed visiting Christo last day, we went to Christo again, this time as a big group. On the pretext of being a very crowded day they increased the price of ticket by 10 Reals per head to 24.4 Reals. BTW, we decided to go in car instead of talking the train all the way which is recommended but costly. Also the lines for getting a ticket and entering are different so you can divide the group in to two and optimize time.
Besides the statue itself being huge and impressive in all senses, the views from the place are just as great. You can see islands, buildings, green mountains and perfectly blue ocean everything from that point. I wondered how nice would be the helicopter tour of the place be as I saw few helicopters go above us.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro


Being in the city I suggested visiting Copacabana beach, which I haven't seen in day light yet! That beach is beautiful but as with any common and popular beach has its share of dirtiness in the water as people through stuff around as the like. The beach front is pretty big and you can see lot of people walking or running across or playing beach Bollyball or other games.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



In the evening was a surprise event, Paulo took us all to the Forro dance place. This place was huge, it was more like a stadium size location and as you would enter you will see a big active market along with multiple big dance performance venues/stages. Pretty impressive. I found myself tapping on the beats of Forro pretty soon as Paula has already given me some idea at home. I call that dance a double-merengue based on its beats. I was also impressed by some superb dancers there. Not unlike other days the party went on :) We would have come back home by about 6:30 AM.


From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro



The next day was the last one of the trip, we lazed around and by the afternoon it was time to leave to Paraty.

From Brazil - Rio De Janeiro

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