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IMG_1053The view to Corcovado and the city of Rio from Sugarloaf Mountain, “Pao de Acucar”.  You can see tiny “Cristo” on the top of Corcovado looking over Rio.  It’s almost surreal and I must say it’s quite cool!

The director of Casa Amarelo, Matthieu told us a few times. “Don’t pass 4:30 for the sunset!”  And we just made it! We haven’t stopped at all since we left the Casa Amarelo around 10:00 am to shop Ipanema and Leblon, walk, walk and walk, took pictures, stop for lunch, the markets then back home then literally 2 minutes to drop off our bags, brushed teeth and out the home with a scarf around the neck as the late evening temperature drops quite quickly in Rio now. The line is quite long to get on a cable car up to Sugar Mountain but also it’s moving quite fast. Fast enough. Feeling getting quite tired yet bit excite to get on the cable car, we are patient.  22 Real ( about $20.00) for the ride for both ways per person. The ride itself is quite quick. It’s the wait and the amount of time how much you want to stay up at the deck on the top of the mountain.  The view is absolutely amazing and you get to really understand the beauty of the bays of Rio and the physical relationship among the Rio, Christo, the beaches and the people reside within all. Cariocas.

IMG_1027At the bottom of all. The Cable car station. We are only imagine what it would be like while waiting…




IMG_1036The view to the right going up.

IMG_1044The view to the left going up.

IMG_1059The camera just doesn’t do the justice of the actual view for the top. You get the 360 degree views all around the mountain and it’s just breathtaking…!

IMG_1045We did not get to go up to the Corcovado to visit Cristo and I am learning now, Corcovado would have had the better view for me as you get to see several favelas, Ipanema, Copacabana, Sugarloaf Mountain and the lake Rodrigo de Freitas.  A good excuse to return to Rio actually!

cristo-redentor-1No this pic is not taken by me as we did not go up to the Corcovado but if you do a Helicopter tour, You can see this view from the Cristo too!

IMG_1073Cristo almost looks like a U.F.O

IMG_1075The beach on the let is the Copacabana. The right one is the lake. You still see Cristo on the back.

IMG_1076A wonderful experience to understand the whole layout of Rio and enjoy the amazing view! It’s one magical city you are Rio!

After, we had returned and had one caipirinha at Casa Amarelo ( thanks Sammy!)  munching on couple pieces of bread pre-packing our bags and stuff. We had changed one more time to freshen up but something conservative. No high heels. No flash outfits here!  Just comfy shoes and something warm and we were going to walk down to the Lapa from Santa Teresa to check out couple Samba clubs or more like Samba music hall and Dance hall.

IMG_1106It’s a Saturday night and Cynthia and I are determined to go listen to live Samba otherwise we are  complete losers with big capital L as we are for God sake in Rio De Janeiro!!!  The streets are closed and filled with people in groups and couples hanging out by the side walk bars and cafes eating and drinking. The Vibe is fantastic! It’s lively but also quite quiet. I can’t imagine what it would be like during the carnival.

Lapa is an area located by the bottom end of Santa Teresa and next to Downtown. Lapa is now a real heart where live Samba clubs and dance halls are  and once used to be the red light district but  since the 1950′s, Lapa has been one of the most important area for the Intellectuals, artist, politicians and writers do come and socialize  and celebrate Samba.  Lapa also houses on eimportant historical architecture, Carioca Aqueduct. Below.

aqueductCarioca Aqueduct, Lapa.  The aqueduct was built back in 1723 to supply the water for Santa Teresa from Carioca River but the water pipes were not even until the century later.  Now it’s used for part of the Tram rail ( the Rail run on the top of the aqueduct offering the view of the Lapa and Downtown).

IMG_1122I had looked up a few Samba clubs and 2 of them happened to be the best in town. One place is this guy  right here you see, “Carioca da Gema”, more of a Music Hall rather than a dance hall. You pay 25 real to get in and they’ll give you drink and food order sheet with your name on to hold on to it. ( anything else from entrance fee is extra charge)  We decided to go in!  It’s still early as 9:30 ish but Carioca da Gema runs the first show at 9:00 with rotating live Samba bands.

IMG_1089Inside! It’s already getting filled up! but I have to say club crowd at least here was very civilized. No pushing or harassing sort of. everyone keeps their pace  and space focusing on music, it was very peaceful and well behaving.




IMG_1108Couple Caipirinha and taste of Samba at Gema, now we are out to street to go check out one more place!

IMG_1109Cigarett, gums and candy guy. When was the last time I saw such?  Learnt you can also by single cigarette for 1 real.



IMG_1154Now entering to our real deal of then night. Democraticas!  Love the entrance and warm rundown feeling.

IMG_1129Would Cuba would be like sort of?  A mansion built in 1807 turned into a Live Samba club, This place is a definitely a dance hall. I feel like I am back in 1950′s. The whole place reminds me of the documentary, Buena vista social club. It has this wonderful old school vibe. I am loving this.  Its 11:30 but the night has not really started yet so we are going for another caipirinha!

IMG_1150Down and humble bar at Democratica.


IMG_1143A big wonderful band! Awesome beautiful music you want to dance to again and again and again!


I’ll say Samba is the half of Rio. You just can’t miss it. Ever!!!!


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1 Comment so far

  1. Chanel @ La Viajera Morena on March 22, 2014 6:44 am

    Great post and lovely photos