Walking tour of Downtown and Lapa

Walking tour of Downtown and Lapa

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, South America

I had a good night’s sleep last night, and I have to say that I am so incredibly happy to have air conditioning in my room here. It’s really hot here. Like really hot. And humid. All the time. It’s exhausting. So to have a nice cooled room I can come back to and sleep in is really nice.

I hopped on the metro and got down to Carioca station in the downtown area and met Becky at 10am for the free walking tour. Today’s group was huge, I counted over 40 people, so I was really happy when a second guide turned up and they split us into two groups. We walked around the area, stopped at Colombo Bakery where the Queen of England came and had tea, and checked out the very unimpressive royal palace. We walked around Downtown, Cinelandia, and finally into Lapa. Our last stop was at the Selaron stairs, that were named after the artist that covered them in colorful tiles from all around the world. The stairs lead up to Santa Teresa, where I went a few days ago with Graeme and Hillary, so I know just how high they go. They are pretty cool to look at because all the tiles are different colors and sizes, and there were loads of people trying to find a tile from their home country. I did manage to find a Scotland one, so I was happy with that and then sat in the shade to cool down.

When the tour finished, eight of us went out to have lunch with the tour guide Virginia to have feijoada. It wasn’t the best feijoada I’ve had, but it was pretty cheap and filled a hole. I split with Becky after lunch and came back to the apartment to chill for the afternoon.

I got a text from Becky that she had to come back down to Largo do Machado to pick up her ticket for Carnaval, so I went out and met her for dinner. We went to pick up her ticket in a conference room in a hotel, and I was very surprised to see how organized it all was. Within about five minutes we were out of there and she had her ticket. I asked about getting a ticket for the Saturday night celebration but it was £200, and I couldn’t see spending that much to go to Carnaval on my own. If I was with a friend who was willing to pay that, it’s probably the perfect way to celebrate Carnaval, but not by myself.

We went out to Gambino’s for dinner and had the same pizza that I’d had a few nights ago. It was very good again, and this time we had gotten a huge one, and had about a third of it left over. Becky didn’t have a place to heat it up at her hostel so I ended up bringing it home and I’ll be having that for dinner tomorrow. If the weather is nice tomorrow I’m hoping to go walk around the lake in the city. It’s supposed to be a nice walk that take about two hours, so that will be a nice way to spend the morning, if this weather holds out.

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