Rio de Janeiro - Corcovado and Copacabana


On a Sunday our cruise ship arrives at lunchtime in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's second largest city. Cruise ships are moored in Rio at the Mauá Pier, which is close to the center. Before docking, the ships pass the Ilha Fiscal Museum Island. The former customs post was located there. The representative buildings now house the naval museum.

Rio de Janeiro - cruise pier


Rio de Janeiro - cruise pier


Rio de Janeiro - Ilha Fiscal


Rio de Janeiro - Ilha Fiscal 


Our ship does not leave the metropolis until the afternoon of the following day. The overnight stay gives us the opportunity to see some of Rio's many attractions.

The first thing we intend to do is to get a good perspective of the 30 meter high statue of Cristo Redentor on Corcovado.

Rio de Janeiro - Christ the Redeemer

Rio de Janeiro - Christ the Redeemer


If we had a lot of time, we would take the Trem do Corcovado cog railway up to the statue at an altitude of over 700 meters. Since our time frame is tight and we want to avoid waiting times at the train and the expected crowds of visitors on the mountain on Sunday, we opt for the Mirante Dona Marta viewpoint as an alternative.

The Corcovado cog railway station can be reached from the cruise terminal on the 180 bus.

One of the taxis parked in the terminal area takes us to the Mirante Dona Marta and then to the Copacabana beach. Communication with the driver works well; he speaks English and he is useful to us during the journey with a lot of pointers.

Rio de Janeiro - buses and taxis in front of the Catedral Metropolitana


Rio de Janeiro - buses and taxis in front of the Catedral Metropolitana


Rio de Janeiro-Santa Teresa


Rio de Janeiro-Santa Teresa 


Mirante Dona Marta - the ultimate lookout point

The viewpoint is located in the Tijuca National Park above the favela Santa Marta, which is clinging to the steep hill. The vantage point, located at a height of 362 meters, offers panoramic views of the city and the bay of Rio, the view of the Sugar Loaf and the Christ statue on the Corcovado, which seems close enough to touch. We also see the opposite city of Niterói and the gigantic bridge that connects Rio with Niterói. The view of the huge São João Batista cemetery in the Botafogo district, with more than 100.000 graves, is impressive. And then there is the Maracana football stadium, where the games of the 2014 World Cup were played.

View of Rio and the port
Rio de Janeiro - Morro da Urca and the Sugar Loaf
Rio de Janeiro - the Sugar Loaf
Rio de Janeiro - the Corcovado with Cristo Redentor
Rio de Janeiro - Guanabara Bay with Niterói
Rio de Janeiro - Bridge between Rio and Niterói
Rio de Janeiro - São João Batista Cemetery
Rio de Janeiro - Maracana Football Stadium

Our driver tells us that on some days monkeys harass the visitors to the lookout point. No monkey can be seen on this Sunday. The driver leads us a short way over to the helipad, the landing area for the helicopters. The helipad offers scenic flights over Rio and the rainforest, and the view from this location is also fantastic.

Rio de Janeiro - Helipad at Mirante Dona Marta

Rio de Janeiro - Helipad at Mirante Dona Marta


 

 

An afternoon at Copacabana

What would Rio be without a visit to the world famous Copacabana and Ipanema beaches? We choose the Copacabana. We say goodbye to our taxi driver on the promenade of the four kilometer long city beach.

Together with thousands of other people, we enjoy Sunday afternoon at Copacabana. Everything a beach visitor needs is taken care of. A tourist information office, beach bars, changing rooms and toilets offer a good standard. The drink prices of the beach bars appear to us to be acceptable in this outstanding location. Security is taken care of; Policemen on quads patrol the beach. People bathe, sunbathe, go for a walk or do sports.

Rio de Janeiro - Hotel Copacabana Palace
Rio de Janeiro - Beach life on Copacabana
Rio de Janeiro - Ball games on Copacabana
Rio de Janeiro - Copacabana - Police patrol

The hotels of the major international chains are located on Copacabana. On Sundays, the lane closest to the beach on the multi-lane Avenida Atlântica is closed to car traffic. From that moment on, the street belongs to the people. In the early evening a loudspeaker truck drives over the blocked part of the street. People dance and have fun to the booming music. We feel comfortable and - by the way - safe as in Abraham's lap.

Rio de Janeiro - traffic-calmed Avenida Atlântica
Rio de Janeiro - Copacabana party zone
Rio de Janeiro - Party at Copacabana
Rio de Janeiro - Girls from Copacabana

It's late now and we're drawn back to our floating hotel. We still have one last look at Copacabana and Cristo Redentor. We'll see more of the city tomorrow. Finding a taxi in the hotel zone is not a problem. We are spared traffic jams on the way to the cruise terminal; In passing we enjoy the park behind the Flamengo beach and the Praça Floriano in the center of Rio.

Rio de Janeiro - Flamengo Beach


Rio de Janeiro - Flamengo Beach


Rio de Janeiro - Park on Flamengo Beach


Rio de Janeiro - Park on Flamengo Beach 


Rio de Janeiro is ideal for individual tourists like us.

Update April 2021

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