Perhaps it was grabbing dinner with our friends Hunter and Cole on Saturday night or maybe it is all the photos of Carnaval that I’m seeing online, but I’m missing Rio. I can’t believe three months ago I was relaxing on Ipanema beach. Summer cannot get here fast enough.
“Carnaval” a.k.a. Carnival in Brazil starts tomorrow. While there are many parties celebrating the start of lent, it seems to me all other parties look pitifully small when compared to Rio de Janeiro.
Feliz Carnaval Meninos
Forte Copacabana provides amazing views of Copacabana beach and Sugar Loaf off in the distance. In recent years, Confeitaria Colombo has opened a second location here, offering visitors a great option for dining with a view. We actually visited for a cocktail one evening and then came for breakfast.
After dining you can walk the grounds of the Fort which also offer great views of Guanabara Bay. Below are a few photographs of my recent visits to Forte Copacabana and Confeitaria Colombo – Cafe do Forte.
Atop the Corcovado mountain in Rio de Janeiro is the city’s most famous site, a 125′ statue named “Christ the Redeemer”. While there are several ways to get to the top of this granite mountain, the most popular is to buy tickets and take the electrically powered train. Although I’ve been to the Corcovado a few times already I don’t get tired of the impressive view.
Enjoying the train ride up the Corcovado.
Goofing around with the guys
Amazing views of Rio de Janeiro from atop the Corcovado
If you are planning a trip to Brazil or Rio de Janeiro and you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me.
When I checked into my room at the Ibis Savassi Hotel in Belo Horizonte Brazil I found this note near my bed. I didn’t recall the amenities list for Ibis including prophylactics. It made me wonder what kind of public uproar would exist in the US if such a municipal law existed here.
All week long I’ve been posting about my recent trip to Brazil. I still have more posts to share that I’m saving for next week, but I think it is fair to say that this is likely to be my most popular. Which one of these guys is your favorite?
Paraty, Brazil is a tiny coastal Brazilian town, approximately 4 hours south of Rio de Janeiro. Sergio and I decided to make a road trip for a few days to this historic town known for its Portuguese colonial architecture.
The streets of Paraty date back to the mid to late 1600′s and provide a romantic backdrop to the green, lush mountains and blue/green waters of the South Atlantic. In addition to walking the stone paved streets of Paraty, one should hire a boat to see some of the many beautiful islands and beaches that are just a quick boat ride away.
Our slow moving but comfortable boat that provided ample shade to keep my pale skin from blistering from the unyielding sun, while we cruised around the harbor for more than 5 hours one day. Below are a few photos of Paraty and our boat ride.
I feel as if the board of tourism for Rio should offer me a free stay at The Copacabana Palace for all the hype I’m providing this city, but I love Rio and can’t help myself. Rio de Jaeneiro has no shortage of famous, beautiful beaches, but I tend to spend most of my time at the gay section of Ipanema Beach. I feel more comfortable here and the people watching is great. Last week at this time, my butt was firmly planted on the sand of Ipanema Beach. Here are a few photos of me relaxing with Sergio and friends at Rio’s gay beach.
If you have an upcoming trip to Rio de Janeiro or travel to Brazil planned, feel free to reach out to me.
Perhaps the most famous beach in Rio de Janeiro is Copacabana. The beach offers spectacular views of one of Rio’s most famous sites, Sugar Loaf. The 4 kilometer long beach (~2.5 miles) is one of my favorites. I’ve included a few photos to give you a glimpse of this beautiful beach.
The large ‘rock’ in the background is Sugar Loaf.
The black and white swirl you see behind Sergio on the sidewalk represents two rivers from the Amazon that Copacabana Beach has adopted as its own.
Not exactly an image of Copacabana beach but representative of what you’ll see.
Giant sandcastles that span 10′ proudly display some of Rio’s most famous sites.
Having just returned from spending two weeks in Brazil, I thought I’d share some thoughts about dining in Rio de Janeiro. The biggest difference I’ve noticed since my last visit is that prices have risen dramatically. Kilogram restaurants (places where you pay by the weight of food on your plate) continue to be the most affordable. Of all the kilogram restaurants my favorite remains, Frontera on Visconde de Piraja in Ipanema (approximately 2 blocks from the gay beach in Rio).
For a nicer option check out a French creperie in Copacabana called Le Ble Noir on Rua Xavier da Silveira. The over sized crepes are delicious and is worth trying.
Confeitaria Colombo in Rio is in some ways what Cafe du Monde is to New Orleans. In recent years they have opened a second location at the Fort in Copacabana Beach called “Cafe do Forte” near Posto 6 (where Copacabana ends and just before Ipanema). Making reservations and requesting an outdoor table for brunch or dinner will afford you fantastic views of Copacabana Beach and Sugar Loaf.
A popular option in Ipanema is Zaza Bistro on Rua Joana Angélica. I first ate here about 4 years ago and when I asked friends in Rio for dining suggestions for this trip, Zaza was repeatedly mentioned.
There also remain a handful of restaurants two blocks from the gay beach in Ipanema on Farme de Amoeda; starting with Si Senor, Cafeina, Rota 66 (Route 66), and To Nem Ai. Cafeina makes for a good breakfast option but for the most part the food at these places is best not discussed. To Nem Ai is the most popular for grabbing a drink after the beach, to people watch or start your evening.
For additional tips about dining in Brazil contact me directly and I’ll be happy to provide additional insight.
After spending nearly two weeks in Brazil, Sergio and I are heading back to Boston (please don’t be cold, please don’t be cold…) It has been fun and I look forward to writing more about the vacation.
After spending a week in Rio de Janeiro, Sergio and I packed up to drive to Paraty, Brazil – a Portuguese colonial town on the coast approximately 2.5 – 3 hours drive South from Rio de Janeiro. I plan to completely decompress by sleeping constantly, reading when I’m awake and doing nothing more strenuous than ordering a cold beverage from the beach.
This marks the last leg of the trip for Sergio and me before we drive back on Friday to fly back home to Boston. While I’m looking forward to returning home, I have to admit I’ll miss the sun and warmth. I’ll write more about that and my other adventures after I return home, but until then you can read about last year’s trip to Florianopolis, Brazil.
Praia Mole: Where the gays are
Jurere and Jurere International
Bistro Isadora Duncan Suite
Today is the first full day that I am in Rio de Janeiro. A couple from Boston arrives here later today, and we’ll spend the week hanging out and enjoying all that Rio can offer, but this morning Sergio and I will be down at the gay beach in Ipanema; just a short walk from the apartment we’ve rented. I hope you have a wonderful day.
Every large city has that one gay club that has been there forever and for Rio de Janeiro that is Le Boy. Anyone who spends any amount of time in Rio is bound to find themselves here.
I remember my first visit to this gay club nearly a decade ago. In pictures it is hard to distinguish it from any other gay nightclub but don’t let that fool you. Brazilians are quite good at having a fun night out and if you come to Rio a visit to Le Boy is definitely in order. We’ll be going here later this weekend and I’m looking forward to it.
I arrived in Belo Horizonte this past Saturday but today Sergio and I leave his family and head down to Rio de Janeiro for a week of fun in the sun. Rio is one of my favorite cities to visit, but I’ve not been here since the fall of 2008.
I’m looking forward to relaxing along Ipanema Beach and checking out what has changed since my last visit.