I'm from Sao Paulo, and since I was born I have never left my city in Brazil, but then, that chance came to me, and now I'm here, in Rio de Janeiro, it's summer and I'm visiting a lot of nice places and beaches. Sao Paulo is a urban city, so we don't have beaches, and it's not many tourists that came to see what we have in SP.
And here, in Rio, I always see people speaking another language, spanish, english, german... I'm impressed about how Rio can be beautiful and really popular all around the world. I would never think that a lot of foreigners come to here. I think it's awesome, I love meet people from another country, and also, I love TRAVEL, and I love my country Brazil.
I'm gonna write some advices for you who is reading this and it's not a Brazilian, but really want to come and visit RIO DE JANEIRO.
It's not everything that you used to see in Brazilian movies that actually happens. It's not everything TRUE, some things are really FALSE. We have favelas, and Brazil it's not a rich country, but we are FUNNY, here are really NICE, COOL, and is the best place to stay when the only thing you want in life is just RELAX. And if you love Brazilians and also, love our culture about SAMBA, FUTEBOL, PORTUGUESE, FOOD (brigadeiro e pão de queijo) AND CARNAVAL, I really recommend you come to visit us.
It is dangerous, so you have to take care (I'm gonna be honest). Take care of everything and pay attention, but don't be afraid, just make sure you are in a safety place. Here they have the "favelas tour". When I saw it I just got really SURPRISED. Because I don't think it's a good idea, I don't think will be fun go to the favelas, actually its a big part of the city, but it's sad, and for me go to the favelas is like "oh, look how poor you are". And sounds very rude.
If you are going to the favelas as a tourist, don't go only for see how poor some parts of Brazil are, don't go only for tell your friends "I WENT TO THE FAVELAS". H E L P. Help. That's my advice. Doesn't make sense you go to a poor place only for watch everything without help anybody. Help someone. People who lives there are not there because they want, they live there because they don't have another choice. And that's BAD, SAD. (I think will be very nice visit "Morro Santa Marta", even if I'm saying it's not a good deal do the "Favela Tour", I will explain better about "Morro Santa Marta" and why I think it's a very interesting place to go).
Many Brazilians don't see any problem about "favela tour". But I see a lot. In Sao Paulo we have a lot of favelas also, but we don't have this kind of thing, not because we are better, but because there is not many foreigners there like here, in Rio.
I read many texts about foreigners who came to Brazil telling about their experience, and I'm gonna share with you guys.
Here is a text of a British man telling what he thinks and likes most in Brazil: http://www.gringoes.com/articles.asp?ID_Noticia=1581
"As I'm not a city slicker, I can only indicate what I've enjoyed. If you like football, catch a game, it's cheap and the atmosphere's great (avoid the "classicos" though, which can suffer from crowd trouble). Eat at a churrascaria, if you like meat. Visit Ilhabela and the north coast of São Paulo state."
"I think the people made the greatest impression when I first visited. I was very lucky in that I had my wife's huge extended family to welcome me, but I've always found the hospitality and warmth of Brazilians overwhelming."
MORRO SANTA MARTA IS COLORFUL
Morro Santa Marta is a FAVELA. I visited there, but I didn't go in, I just went to the beginning where is a big staircase which is famous because Michael Jackson just recorded his music video "They Don't Care About Us" there. So, everybody comes to take pictures at the staircase, but if you go in, you will find a statue of Michael Jackson and an art by "Romero Brito", a Brazilian artist.
To go up, take a taxi or elevator of Santa Marta.
The tourists guide knows everyone who lives there, so is safety. But I don't think you HAVE TO do that for see "Michael Jackson" and take some pictures. You just have to take a taxi to Morro Santa Marta, or, if you live close, you can walk. But to see the statue you have to go up, so, it's better go by taxi or elevator.
DONE. I hope you all guys like my post and all my advices about how you can come to Rio and visit cool places. And I'm sorry about my english, if I made any mistake, it's not my language, I'm Brazilian, I speak Portuguese, so I'm sorry for anything. And thank you so much for visiting my blog and read my post. Leave a comment. :)
-Mariane Dutra, Brazilian