Despite our late arrival home, I managed to get everyone up and out of bed at 10am to get ready for another fun filled day. We headed out to get a taxi to Corcovado but ended up getting a service from the hotel that brought us up the mountain, helped us get our tickets to go up to Christ the Redeemer and waited for us to take pictures. The day was beautiful so we got some amazing pictures of the city and like usual clouds covered the mountain tops. After many pictures, we shuttled it back to our van who brought us to another viewing point - which happened to be very near the helopad from the previous day. Multiple pictures later, we headed back to the hotel.
To save room for a Brazilian steakhouse dinner later we grabbed some waters and crackers and headed to the beach. The sun was out for us to enjoy relaxing on the beach that afternoon and sent people jumping into the water. I stole Jeeves camera to capture the funny faces as they all realized how cold it was. It was a nice way to spend the afternoon before heading over to Urca
& Sugar Loaf Mountain for sunset. The hotel lent us towels so I didn't even have to worry about packing one back up afterwards. We all changed into hiking gear and headed over to Urca.
Jeeves had climbed the mountain earlier that week in the rain, so he posed as our guide to the cable cars. First we grabbed some corn on the cob from a vendor. It was quite different from the sweet corn back home, it was really heavy and starching in comparison. I could only eat half before passing it off for James to finish (our resident garbage disposal). We stopped by the beach with a statue of Chopin before heading up the hiking trail. Andrew kindly followed near Tara to make sure she made it up okay and I struggled trying not to slip down the rocks in my Puma shoes with no grip. We made it to the view point for a nice breather and pretty view of the harbor before finishing up the trek to the cable cars. The top of Urca was all decorated up for a wedding reception and full of fun bright colors. We took the car up to the
top of Sugar Loaf to watch the sun set over the city. We had some awesome views. Andrew and I did a little exploring through the ecological garden to get a view of the other side, and even slide down a small incline they had for bringing plants in and out. We stayed until dark and got some pretty cool looks at the city at night including a glowing Christ the Redeemer statue.
Back at the hotel, we all cleaned up and dressed fancy for our scheduled Brazilian Steakhouse dinner at Porcao Rio. The salad bar and sushi bar at the restaurant were amazing! We got two bottles of red wine to share, including the official FIFA World Cup wine for next year. We were all slightly disappointed with the meat service. The meat was tasty but WAY too salty. I couldn't help but go back for more salad bar instead. Since we didn't fill up on meat, we all got fantastic desserts - my dulce de leche torte was to die for.
Full from dinner, we decided to head out to party. We cabbed it over to Lapa, the known spot in town for night life. The
streets were full of people. In Rio, it is common for people to get drinks from the bar and then hang out on the streets in front of them (no open container laws like the US). We set our sights on Lapa 40 Gaus. This bar was perfect for us - it had a live samba band downstairs where we enjoyed playing a couple rounds of pool before heading upstairs for a DJ and some dancing. The pool table was different than home, it had 4 yellow balls and 4 red. I'm not sure we played the game correctly but we had fun doing it. Andrew was exhausted from only 2 hours of sleep so around 1:30am he was already calling it quits. He and I headed back earlier than the others, but enjoyed chatting a little bit longer before crashing.
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