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Rio De Janeiro Brazil


Thursday, April 24 2008

Me relaxing at the Eco Lodge in the Amazon.

We left the Eco Lodge this morning and arrived at the Manaus airport via a short boat cruise and then bus ride. We traveled with our new friends Frank and Angela. They were fellow lodge guests and we got to know them on our many guided excursions. Frank and Angela is a young Chinese couple that had been living and working in New York. They had left New York and were on their way to Hong Kong being relocated by Frank's company there.

The flight from Manaus to Rio was a real pain as it went via Sao Paulo. This added more time to the journey by itself but when you added the disorganization we encountered at Sao Paul airport the trip ended up taking 7 hours. We were picked up at the Rio airport and deposited at our excellent hotel in Copacabana. The hotel was very nice and made up for the horrid flight we had just taken.

Friday, April 25 2008

Julia at a waterfall on our way up to Parrot's Peak.

After a lovely buffet breakfast we were picked up by our guide from Rio Hiking and driven to Tijuca Park. This is a very beautiful park right in the center of the city. It is full of magnificent jungle and was replanted after being cut down to grow coffee and tea. This venture failed and so in 1857 seven slaves started replanting the jungle.

It took them 30 years to finish! Anyway the place is certainly fantastic now. We hiked up a mountain called Parrot's Peak which took 2 hours and was up hill all the way. The last 15 minutes required us to scramble over steep rocks to reach the top. The view of the city there was inspirational. We were glad to get back to the hotel, have dinner then go to bed after this excellent day.

Tijuca Park In Reo

Saturday, April 26 2008

Me looking very happy soaring like a bird over Rio.

What a day this was! In the morning I went up a peak in Rio and leaped off of it. I had a hang glider strapped on my back so it was a smooth landing on a beach and not a bone crushing splat.

Hang-gliding Video

Julia did not make the leap of faith citing that she just did not want anymore broken bones after her broken arm last year, which she received when we went rollerblading in Oakland; who could blame her.

Julia surrounded by vultures as we made our accent of the peak.

Once the flying was over with we returned to our hotel for some lunch by the Copacabana beach.

Then we were picked up by a Rio Hiking guide and driven to Sugarloaf Mountain which is another huge peak in the city of Rio; we then hiked and rock climbed up to the peak of Sugarloaf Mountain.

Sugarloaf Peak Video

The views on this excursion were magnificent and breathtaking. Julia and I both agreed that Rio has replaced San Francisco as our most beautiful city we have experienced so far.

Julia making her fist ever difficult rock climbing move.

Not only was there some very strenuous hiking required on this trek, but we had to make a fairly difficult rock climb at the top of the hike.

The climb was even more difficult as it was very exposed and Julia had never climbed before. The guides gave excellent instruction so we all made it safely up to the top.

Julia looking pleased with herself after completing the climb.

Rock climbing Video

The views at the top of Sugarloaf were spectacular and once again we were very happy to make it back to our hotel and to sleep after another very exciting day.

Sunday, April 27 2008

Julia on the river.

It was an early rise for us today so we could make the two hour drive to our river rafting experience. We travelled through some not so nice areas of Rio on our way to the river; this gave us a view into a side of Rio we had not seen; very depressing.

We were soon on the river bouncing up and down on the waves and rocks. It was a beautiful day warm and humid so being on and in the river was the right place to be.

River rafting Video


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