Before breakfast we went for a swim in the Atlantic Ocean. Afterwards, we had plenty of time to check out and take an Uber and cab to the International Airport. On the way we bought a small additional lens for clipping on the IPhone in a photo and cell phone store. Let’s see if we can get some good zoom shots with it.
At the moment we are still on our way to Africa.
Today was a rest and research day. We only went up and down the beach once in between and had a look at the opposite Ipanema Beach. But we personally like the Copacabana side better because it is wider and you can reach the beach and the water directly and not only by stairs. Because it was perhaps Sunday, one side of the beach promenade was closed to cars today. It was extensively used by joggers, bicyclists, scooter riders, etc.
The weather forecast was right about the clouds and rain. We were very lucky with our trips the last two days and probably wouldn’t have been able to see that far today! From the announced thunderstorm, however, we did not get anything. However, a mobile street stall on the other side of the street was suddenly on fire. We could watch from our window, how it burned down and afterwards the fire department came. By the way, there is a gas station in the middle of the street.
Since we had nice weather with good visibility today, after breakfast we took an Uber – cab to the bottom station of the “Trem do Corcovado” train to the Cristo statue. We were there at 9:30 and the next possible tickets would have been for 17:00! On the spur of the moment, we bought tickets from the “black market” offered in front of the station. They were a bit more expensive, but for 11:20. With the rack railroad we went to the 710 m high mountain Corcovado to Christ the Redeemer, which welcomed us in bright sunshine and 34 degrees. On the way to the top, a yellow-breasted capuchin monkey did some gymnastic exercises in the trees along the way.
After taking extensive photos and enjoying the view, we had another cool drink on the terrace of the restaurant and then we went back down by train.
In the meantime, it covered with clouds, so you could see the Cristo merge with the sky. By Uber we went back to the hotel. Right after that we went to the sea with only bathing suit and towel. The red flag was still fluttering, but the waves were not so high today, we ventured in up to our bellies. In the evening there was again delicious salad and the box seat at our window. ( Uber 2 x 16 Reals, Trem tickets 130 Reals pP instead of 79 pP).
We had a very good breakfast in our hotel and started walking to the Sugar Loaf at 11:45 am. It was about 7 km of walking and hiking from the hotel to the middle station Morro da Urca. You can take the cable car the whole way or the second half from the middle station. The way was very nice to walk. From the bottom station we took about 1 h with many photo stops. Shortly before the middle station Morro da Urca we met some cute dwarf marmosets. The little ones measured about 15 cm – 20 cm plus tail. The white puffs on the ear and curled tails are cute and the monkeys are very curious. Reiner’s walking stick was explored extensively! And there were a few peanuts on top. Feeding is strictly forbidden though!
The cable car shuttles up and down. The cabin can fit about 25 people at a time…. The view of Rio de Janeiro, Copacabana, and the surrounding islands and mountains is magnificent. Christi was hiding behind a cloud though.
On top of Sugarloaf Mountain, a large dark gray and black vulture-like bird was perched in the tree. After 1.5 h on the top of the famous rock, we went back down to the middle station and then descended and walked back “home”. Back at the hotel, we ate the salad and bread we bought on the way in front of our open window, and enjoyed the view.
We moved to the Hotel Olinda Rio today and got a nice room with a view of Copacabana. A few hours we were at the beach at 30 degrees heat, where unfortunately the red flag was hoisted. Bathing was not allowed because of the high waves, only with the feet were allowed in the South Atlantic. But it was also great just to look at the surf.
In the evening we got quiche and pancake rolls in a bakery and then went with a tour (BeaLocal) to the soccer match Flamengo (Brazil) 6 – 1 San José (Bolivia). The mood was correspondingly euphoric, Flamengo has thus risen today from 2nd place to 1st place in the South American Championsleage. 60,000 spectators were at the Estadio do Maracana predominantly in red/black for Flamengo.
By the way, in 2014 the World Cup final Argentina 0 – 1 Germany took place here. Today we were times for Brazil. ( Tour with ticket, bus and guide 240 Reals pP)
We started today with a not so good feeling, byTaxi, to the airport, because the “Online Check In” had not worked last night. The reason was a payment for our luggage, which we could not complete due to a non-existent Brazilian tax number. Also a No. created over a F.k.-generator did not lead to success. But finally it was no problem to check in at the airport and to pay the luggage on the spot (same price as on the internet). The flight with “Azul” went via Sao Paulo to Rio de Janeiro.
We had quickly booked a hotel at Copacabana in Rio for one night between flights in Sao Paulo. Sugarloaf Mountain and the statue of Christ greeted us at 27 degrees and sunshine. Yesterday, a state of emergency was declared here. Several people died after heavy flooding and landslides.
After arriving at the hotel, we asked the receptionist about the situation. He just said that this happens every year. Don’t worry.
After a walk in the district, looking for something “edible”, we also had the impression that everything is running normally.
In any case, the next few days should be nice weather.
In Brazil the public bus 120 drove us in about 1h to the national park entrance there. We found the Brazilian side of the Iguazu Falls almost more spectacular than the Argentine side! You can practically walk into the rainbow on a bridge! (Pretty humid!)
From the park entrance, you are taken to the viewpoints in large panoramic buses. There are several bus stops on the approx. 10 km long road and against surcharge one could rent bicycles and canoes, make a Hikingtour and also speedboat tours (somewhat more expensive than in Argentina but better? smaller boats) are available. A good 1 km trail to the water starts at the terminus. Several photo points offer great views. On the way back we wanted to walk in the side paths, but this is not allowed without an upgrade. Even so we saw a lot of new and beautiful things. The butterflies let themselves be taken on the hand today.
And on a plain, a small group of capybaras (large guinea pigs) were grazing.
In the evening we went for Italian food at “Folkz Pizzas +Saladas”. Very fresh ingredients, front cooking similar to Subways only with pizza and salad, very tasty! In addition, freshly tapped beer (Brahma), but in plastic cups. ( Bus one way 3,75 Real pP., National Park entrance 70,00 Real pP.)
Today we moved on to the Brazilian side. By public bus we went to the border crossing at 10:30 am. Argentine exit stamp, quickly back on the bus, over the Iguazu Bridge and entry stamp in Brazil Foz do Iguacu. There, unfortunately, the bus did not wait, so we had to take the next one an hour later. In the city we had still approx. 2 km footpath and were in time in the hotel. Spontaneously we decided to make a lightning visit to Paraguay and were able to board the bus to Paraguay directly at the street of our hotel. At Rio Parana first exit Brazil and on the other side entry to Ciudad del Este in Paraguay .
Lots of hustle and bustle, outlet centers on shopping streets and flying merchants in between. Seems to be the shopping paradise of the Brazilians, as all went back over the bridge with full bags. We bought once nothing, because we needed nothing! On foot we went back to Brazil and behind the border by bus to our hotel.