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At The Copacabana in Rio!

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We did a Princess cruise to celebrate our 41st anniversary and my husband’s 68th birthday. The cruise started in Ft. Lauderdale and wound up in Rio de Janeiro. We spent three nights in Rio before we flew back home.

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Our hotel, the Windsor Hotel Atlantica, was right across the street from the Copacabana Beach, and I’m sure you’ve all got the Barry Manilow song running through your head now, even though there’s no relation between the beach and the song. All I can say is, better that than to have The Girl From Ipanema running through your brain for four straight days! Interesting factoid about that girl, she is now in her sixties, has a shop that sells bikinis on the street across from the beach, and has been the victim of too much plastic surgery. This info was from our tour guide, because I did not see her personally.

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Above is a picture of our hotel, the really tall building. It was a fantastic hotel with great service. Steve is in the ocean on the Copacabana Beach, which is right across the street from the hotel. We were sort of lucky because we got there the day after Carnival, so everybody was recuperating from all the partying, so for the first two days we had the beach to ourselves.

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Above is a view of Copacabana Beach and the city of Rio. When people say that Rio is a city of contrasts, they are not kidding. There is this amazing wealth right next door to incredible poverty. The hills are covered with shanties, and there is enormous poverty in the city itself. Yet there is an eternal optimism within these Brazilians who take great pride in explaining that all these tenement  buildings near the beach will be torn down and replaced by the time of the 2016 Olympics. I can only hope they are faster than our construction on the highways in Florida!

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Above are pictures of the cable cars that lead to Sugarloaf, a landmark where you can get spectacular views of the city. If you are sixty-two,or older, you can purchase your cable car ticket for half-price, provided you have your driver’s license to prove your age.¬† Below is the amazing statue of Christ the Redeemer, the imposing statue that stands guard over Rio.

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Since we arrived in Rio at the end of the celebrations, we still got to see the Carnival decorations and some of the floats and costumes. On a practical note, at the time we were there, it took 2.74 Brazilian dollars to 1.00 US dollar, which made things economical for us. The food was fabulous, especially the steaks!

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Another surprise for us was the resort town of Peteropolis where Brazil’s emperor, Peter II had a summer palace. I found this amazing because I did not know Brazil had an emperor in the nineteenth century. This town is two hours outside of Rio and well worth visiting. It has a much more peaceful feel than the hustle and bustle of Rio. You get an immediate feel that the people of Peteropolis live a very different lifestyle than those folks in Rio. Below are some pictures of Peteropolis.

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Above is a picture of the summer palace of Peter II of Brazil and the church is where he and his wife are buried. If you do visit Rio de Janeiro, making a side trip to Peteropolis is well worth the time and money. Brazil is definitely worth visiting at least once in your lifetime.  I would love to see what changes are made in Rio for the 2016 Olympics. When you travel in Brazil, be prepared for extreme contrasts, both geographically and socially.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing a little bit of my travels. Also, thanks for all the well wishes for our 41st anniversary. That means a lot to me!

Bren

 

 

 

 

 

 

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