Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

Uncategorised Posted by gaytravel on  Wed, Mar 21st, 2018 @ 7:54:00 PM  5  0    

Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

Rio de Janeiro city has over 7 million inhabitants and its urban population is of over 11 million. This puts it in the second place in Brasil and on the 30 most populated cities of the world. It is one of the most visited cities in the Southern Hemisphere. People visit it for its natural settings, its carnival, samba, bossa nova and Balneario beaches. The most famous landmarks include the giant statue of Christ the Redeemer, Sugarloaf Mountain, the Sambadrome, and Maracanã Football Stadium.

Rio de Janeiro samba

samba dance & music

samba dance & music

The samba is a Brasilian kind of music that became famous because of the carnival in Rio. It has a long history with, different influences, that goes back to the 8th century after J.C. and starts in Europe on the Iberian Peninsula when the first Africans came to Spain and Portugal. During five centuries of Arabian occupation, percussion instruments made an entry. In the era of colonisation, up to 5 million slaves shipped to Brasil and brought music and dance tradition that evolved to the samba.


The samba in the 18th century

But the most important cultural influence comes from Bantoo people from Angola and the south west of nowadays Congo. The slaves learnt western music styles as the mars, the waltz and the Italian aria to perform on private orchestras and choirs while the Portuguese occupants watched fascinatedly. The terminology for this and all another kind of African music guided by percussion was Afrikaanse batuques. A combination of Western music and batuques gave birth to a new Brasilian style, the lundu through the 18th century. This was the first national dance of Brasil with the modinha as a more erudite variant.

The samba in the 19th century

The flowering of coffee cultivation and the abolition of slavery at the end of the 19th century caused migration flows. Mainly the inhabitants of the state of Bahia brought their music and dance habits to Rio de Janeiro where they settled. Some of the most influential on the evolution of the samba were: the samba de Roda do recôncavo, the samba rural Paulista, the Calango, the Jongo and the Congadas or congos. Under the influence of the polka and Cuban habanera, the lundu in Rio de Janeiro evolved into a new dance and music competition: the maxixe.

Breakthrough of the samba

The carnival of Rio de Janeiro played a major role in the further evolution of the samba. In 1917, the samba breaks through as a musical style. In 1928 the first samba school ‘Deixe Falar’ was established. In the 1930s, the samba schools became part of the official carnival and the samba carioca (samba of Rio de Janeiro) became a national symbol.

Different kinds of samba

The Samba comum, the Samba de roda do recôncavo, the samba de chula, the samba corrida, the Partido alto, the Pagode (the most occuring samba style in Brasil), the Samba canção, the Samba enredo, the Samba reggae, the Axé.

All these music variants of the samba are a dance also. The samba is also one of the five Latin dances that belong to standard dances. This stylized samba has little in common with the Brasilian samba dances.


Rio de Janeiro bossa nova and variants of the samba

Bossa nova is a jazz version of samba, best known by Tom Jobim. Famous songs include “Mas Que Nada” by Sergio Mendes and “Garota de Ipanema” with music by Antonio Carlos Jobim and text by Vinicius de Moraes. Other variants are: Samba de breque and Jongo.

Rio de Janeiro Carnival

Rio carnival

Rio carnival

Carnival is celebrated exuberantly in Rio de Janeiro. It is celebrated from Saturday to Tuesday. People go to party festively during Carnival. The samba plays an important role here. Everyone is nicely dressed and/or decked out. There is also a big carnival parade on the Sambadrome every year by the world famous samba schools. The party is also meant to protest against corrupt politicians, to complain about poverty and to forget heartbreak.


Carnival parade on the sambadrome – © Ian Gampon from NYC, USA (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Carnival of Rio de Janeiro 2011 - (6776054356)

Most popular sights of Rio de Janeiro

Botanical garden

“Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro” is about 145 hectare. There is an arboretum, an herbarium, a seed bank and a shop in which plants are sold. The plant collection includes cacti and other succulents, palms, myrtle family, Leguminosae, Guttiferae, orchids, bromeliads, Arum family, Begonia, carnivorous plants, medicinal plants and a large collection of tropical trees.
Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro on the website of Botanic Gardens Conservation International with practical information.

The beaches of Rio de Janeiro

Praia de Copacabana - Rio de Janeiro, BrasilCopacabana beach – © [ bisonlux] (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The most famous beaches are Copacabana, Ipanema and Barra da Tijuca, of which especially the latter is on the rise. Copacabana and Ipanema are world famous and lie close together: only the small beach of Arpoador separates them. The Copacabana beach is 4 kilometers long and has the shape of a half moon.


Ipaneman beach Rio de Janeirossa

Ipaneman beach Rio de Janeirossa – © CC BY-SA 3.0, Joonasl

The Ipanema beach and the surrounding district of the same name is also one of the safest in Rio thanks to the many police.


Arpoador beach in Rio

Arpoador beach in Rio

The Arpoador beach is known for its many surfers.

Bondinho chegando ao Pão de AçúcarPraia Vermelha beach in Rio – © Halley Pacheco de Oliveira (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The Praia Vermelha is a small beach in the Urca district, literally translated ‘Red Beach’, named after the sand that appears red colored by the sun. The beaches of Rio are known for the scantily clad women and beach soccer players.

Barra da Tijuca beach in Rio de Janeiro – © Barrazine Da Barra [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia CommonsBarra da Tijuca Rio de Janeiro

Tijuca forest

Tijuca rainforest

Tijuca rainforest

The Tijuca forest (Floresta da Tijuca) is a rainforest, in the middle of the city of Rio de Janeiro in the Tijuca district, with about ,150,000 inhabitants. The rainforest is constructed manually and covers an area of almost 33 square kilometers, making the Tijuca forest the largest forest in the world in the middle of a city. Among other things, the Cristo Redentor statue on the 710 meter high Corcovado mountain is located in the forest. This is not the highest mountain in the forest: that is the Pico da Tijuca with 1,022 meters. Also the Mesa do Imperador stands in the forest, a huge granite picnic table.

The Tijuca forest is home to many endangered animal and plant species. The original forest was destroyed during colonial times so that coffee plantations could be built. In the second half of the 19th century, it was Mayor Manuel Gomes Archer who ordered to ‘rebuild’ the forest. The forest was declared a National Park in 1961.


Christ the redeemer



Christ the Redeemer is a huge picture of Jesus Christ on the 710 meter high mountain Corcovado. The image itself is 38 meters high, and symbolizes the worldwide spread of the Christian message. The statue was officially unveiled on October 12, 1931, after about 10 years of construction.

In 2007, the statue was voted one of the seven modern world wonders by means of a large-scale internet election.


Sugar loaf

Sugar Loaf

Sugar Loaf

The Sugarloaf mountain is a summit of 396 meters high, located at the entrance of the Baía de Guanabara. The mountain is one of the seven granite boulders of Rio. The mountain ends conical, giving it a characteristic appearance. That is one of the most popular attractions in Rio. The mountain is easily accessible via a 1400 meter long cable car, but can also be climbed.

The Urca district, with the ‘red beach’ described above, lies at the foot of the mountain.


Hotels in Rio de Janeiro


Cheap flights to Rio de Janeiro

The cheapest round-trip tickets from London to Rio De Janeiro

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23 January 202331 January 2023DirectTickets from 925
19 October 202226 October 20221 StopTickets from 1 208

The cheapest round-trip tickets from Amsterdam to Rio De Janeiro

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16 September 20229 October 2022DirectTickets from 991
9 November 202223 November 20221 StopTickets from 562
27 March 20233 April 20231 StopTickets from 576

Cheap flights to Rio De Janeiro

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Vitoria27 November 202229 November 2022Tickets from 76
Sao Paulo14 September 202220 September 2022Tickets from 96
Florianopolis19 September 202220 September 2022Tickets from 111
Goiania20 September 202226 September 2022Tickets from 117
Brasilia3 November 20226 November 2022Tickets from 119

View all cheap flights to Rio de Janeiro from any city of depart


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