Ted Travels Slow in Rio
We love traveling back to Latin America to learn, to discover, to experience what’s new and what works and doesn’t to tailor the best itineraries for the clients. If there’s something I’ve learnt from all my travels, is that you always need more time to really see a country. I believe in “slow” travel, that is why if you clients tell you that they have only 30 days ask them for 2 or 3 more as there is so much to see and experience, be it in the country side, a town, a village or a city.
Take Rio for example, set around a beautiful harbour surrounded by its famous landmark mountains and great beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema. Instead of the traditional 2 or 3 night stop over including a sightseeing tour we recommend stay longer and check out the following things to do:
Tijuca Forest National Park: just at the back of Corcovado you will find the largest urban rainforest where people can hike, birdwatch and have great views of Rio. Along with waterfalls and natural springs, this forest is a cool paradise.
Combine this with a stroll in the famous Jardin Botanico tucked away behind Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas. Clients who are more active can stroll, walk, run or take a bike ride along the beaches as the roads are closed for cars on the weekends. What a better chance to experience Rios’ local life while stopping at rest points along the way to enjoy the live music.
For “Culture vultures” the National Museum of Fine Arts presents pieces of fine art dating back from 17th Century. The two new museums are the Museum of Contemporary Art across the bay in Niteroi designed by legendary Oscar Niemeyer, which is a piece of art on itself, and looks like a space ship; and the latest is the Museum of Tomorrow, right on the waterfront, looks like the skeleton of a dinosaur, and it focuses on sustainability.
My first stop in Rio was out in the suburb of Lapa, a bit frightening to say the least, but today has been transformed into a safe area, it was once the red-light area now is packed with samba and choro bars, wild music and dancing in the street, definitely a place to visit. From here clients can do a short walk to explore the Escadaria Selaron (the world-famous tiled staircase), they can also take a tram car over Lapa Aqueduct to Santa Teresa or walk around to see what I call the upside-down Metropolitan Cathedral with its amazing stained-glass windows of 64 metres!
Then of course you have Carnival and New Year’s Eve for spectacular parties, and we can also offer a batteria class to learn to drum to the rhythm of Samba! Let us take you further, after all, We Know Latin America by Heart.