Rio: Part 1 - Beaches, Big Screens and Bitter Disappointment

Published: August 21st 2014
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Due to being very busy (read as very lazy) this post is now well over a month overdue. Better late than never! I'll try to keep it short and sweet.

Our Rio adventure began as we pulled into the bus terminal with just over and hour to go until the kick off of the highly anticipated Brazil vs Germany World Cup semi-final, and we were desperate to get ourselves down to the fan zones and soak up the Brazilian atmosphere. After a agonising wait at the terminal for a taxi we finally got ourselves into our new hostel in Botafogo, a trendy up and coming part of the city. Bags were dropped, yellow was donned, and Brazil flags in hand we headed out into the city.

The city was a stream of yellow, green and blue, all flowing in the direction of the metro system to get down to the beach and watch the match. We followed suit, attempting to join in the chants on the metro in our very poor Portuguese, before arriving at the world famous Copacabana beach. Hundereds of people had piled onto the sands with beer cans and caipirinhas in hand, as we squeezed ourselves into a good spot to watch the match on the giant fan fest screen. No one could have quite predicted the game that followed....

1-0 Ok, no problem. We've still got this. Fred's looking sharp!

2-0 Hmmmm

3-0 Still time!

4-0 I think this is game over

5-0 Yep

6-0 Fred's a donkey

7-0 I always said I'm part German

7-1 Yay?

To make matters worse the heavens had opened and we were all drenched. Mid game there were a few moments of madness from within the crowd involving fireworks/gunshots but we all remained unscathed, with only our pride damaged. The Brazilians were gradually leaving the beach, but those who stayed, to their credit, were happy to laugh and sing the night away (maybe in celebration of the exit of a tournament they never really wanted?). Quick KFC on the way home. Why not? Upon returning to the hostel happy hour drinks endured with myself (Tricky) and Lukey continuing the night at an area of town known as Lapa which hosted street parties for all the world cup fans whilst TP and the welshman had a quiet night in.

Our second day in Rio saw us see the second most famous beach in Rio; Ipanema. The beach was full of young Brazilians drinking from coconuts and playing foot volleyball, and we happily found ourselves throwing a frisbee around and paying volleyball with some locals - all in all not a bad place to be! I slow wander along Ipanema and back down the Copacabana took us into the official FIFA Fan Zone for the Argentina Holland game. The game itself wasn't fantastic but the Fan Zone was packed with Argentinians who were in full voice, creating an atmosphere that made the game far more entertaining. Exhausted, we returned to hostel for a quiet night in.

In the morning the boys, minus Lukey, travelled to a famous part of Rio known as Santa Teresa with our new found hostel buddies. A good snoop around and Brazilian lunch was welcomed, before we walked along the tram tracks down towards Lapa for the Lapa Steps as seen in the Snoop Dog track "Beautiful". Photos to follow! That night a big crowd from the hostel headed out into a rainy Lapa, meeting up with some friends we met in our very first hostel in Santiago. Many caipirinhas later we returned home for a last night in a real hostel. The next step? Favella life!

Sorry its brief, were in catch up mode.



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