Lapa, Santa Teresa and the accidental Favela

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January 6th 2014
Published: January 7th 2014
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Another day and another lazy morning, oh how things went somewhat different from this point on. We headed down to Leblon as usual to catch a bus, this time over to Novo Rio bus terminal to buy our tickets out of Rio later this week. Our intended bus zoomed straight past in typical Rio style without stopping! Instead of waiting in the sweltering heat for another 20 minutes, we begrudgingly hoped onto the next bus headed for Rio Central (nearby our original target destination).

Once we arrived we decided to sack off going to find the Bus Station and head straight to find the apparently fabulous Escadaria Selaron steps (Mainly so Rich could pretend to be Snoop dogg in the video 'beautiful' for a brief moment). With map in hand and the location of the steps marked 'exactly' from google maps, off we went. As we got 'closer and closer' to our intended destinations, things started to get a little uncertain. Less and less tourists, more and more bemused looks from slightly unsavoury looking locals, buildings deteriorated and it not so quickly became apparent that we were most likely in the wrong place. We came to a hypothetical cross roads...keep searching in this favela looking dump or split ASAP; we chose the later! Disappointed we weren't going to get that famed shot we were hoping for but thankful to still be alive we headed back to civilisation (with somewhat of a jog).

Next stop on the agenda was Lapa; described as having a mixture of modern office blocks, colonial architecture and a buzzing nightlife with many bars and restaurants...this is exactly what we found. First stop, somewhere to have a nice cold beer after our earlier ordeal. A lovely rustic old bar with bottles stacked from floor to ceiling we chilled out, cooled down and let our abnormally high pulses return to a safe level. After a brief wander round Lapa we headed to the neighbouring area of Santa Teresa. With its steep winding roads and staircases, this quaint, picturesque residential neighbourhood is the exact location you would expect to find the iconic steps we were searching for only a couple of hours earlier a few miles away. After reaching the top of the hill we decided to head back down in another direction for a change of scenery. Five or so minutes after wandering around aimlessly, what do we stumble upon...the Escadaria Selaron steps!!! Several (hundred) photos later we happily skipped off, hoped back on the bus and reflected of what could have been and what was after everything, another successful day in Rio De Janeiro (even if we did see a little more than we hoped for).

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12th January 2014

loving the photos of you guys infront of the paintings on the walls...very 'Brasil'!! Very cool!! There seems to be a theme here..... i reckon you are collecting beer mats?! As each blog entry seems to have a visit to a local bar in it ;)

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