Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What day is it?

I think it´s Tuesday.

Seriously, time goes by very quickly here.  The days seem to blend together as I meet new people, spend more time with people from my hostel, and explore Rio.

On Saturday I did a full day tour of the major sights of Rio organized through the hostel.  We saw the cathedral, which is very famous but also very controversial.  It is shaped like a square and has entrances in the front and two sides, and its unconventional design disappoints a good amount of people here.

After that, we tried to see the Sambodome, but it was way too crowded and busy for us to get near.  So instead we headed to the football stadium.  Apparently it is world famous, as it hosted the 1950 World Cup andwas able to seat 200,000 people until part of collapsed during a game.  They have since put regulations in that everyone in the stadium has to sit, and that standing room isn´t allowed, which has brought its capacity down to about 94.000.  Rio gets to host the 2014 World Cup as well as the 2016 Olympic games, so that´s awesome for them.

Unfortunately we didn't have time to see the inside of the stadium or the musuem, but it was cool getting to see it from the outside and snap these pictures.

Then we got to see the Christ the Redeemer statue in the Corcovado mountain range.  He overlooks Rio and his arms are wide open to the city, and it took 9 years to build it.  It was finished in 1931. 

Later on in the day we went to an all you can eat buffet as well as the Selaron staircase that leads from Lapa to Santa Teresa.  About 20 years ago an artist named Selaron decided he was going to take colorful tile that he collected from his travels and start decorating the stairs.  He still works on it on a daily basis, and I was able to get a picture with him when I was there.

The last stop of the day was the Sugar Loaf.  We took a cable car up to the first level, and the view was pretty amazing.  Then when we went up to the next level, and I was able to see the Christ the Redeemer stuate in the distance.  That was the end of the tour.

Other than that, my days have been spent exploring with other backpackers and spending time at the beach.  My 3rd attempt at hang gliding is supposed to happen in about half an hour, and the hostel promised me that it will happen this time.  Hopefully they will keep their word.

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