Alto da Boa Vista

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    • Day 82

      Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (Day 1)

      March 3 in Brazil ⋅ ☀️ 86 °F

      New-to-us port #14 … with an overnight.

      I wish I could say that the sail in to Rio lived up to the hype. Unfortunately, a thick haze — part marine layer, part humidity, and part smog — veiled the scenery. Speaking to others who’ve been here several times before, they told that this was the worse they’ve seen it. Perhaps, if we find our way back here by ship again, we’ll have better luck.

      Mui and I once again joined Sonia and Boris on a private tour that they had organized.

      The plan was to tour for a day and a half and then go to one or two of the museums in the port area on the afternoon of our second day. With Insignia arriving in Rio at 10:00a, however, our guide, Carlos, felt it would be better to do the half day tour today. Alrighty then.

      Once we were settled in Carlos’s car, we headed up to Tijuca National Park, which conserves a portion of the Atlantic Rainforest. The reason for doing the national park today was that one of the two sections we would be visiting is closed on weekends. On this sunny, humid, and 89F-hot day, we were delighted to find that it was a tiny bit cooler once we entered the park and gained some elevation. This was mostly a drive through visit, with short stops at the Taunay Waterfall, Capela Matrink (locked up tight since the onset of the pandemic), Emperor’s Table, and Chinese View.

      After leaving Tijuca National Forest, Carlos took us on a scenic drive that included stops at an overlook from which we could see Lebron and Ipanema beaches. Here we also saw the evocative memorial to the 228 people who lost their lives in the 2009 Air France crash.

      Our drive continued along Ipanema and Copacabana beaches, with a stop at a pull out on the harbor for the best view we had of Sugarloaf Mountain all day. We took a quick run through downtown before Carlos dropped us off at the Museum of Tomorrow (free for those over 60 with proof of age).

      This is a science museum that focuses on five main areas … Cosmos, Earth, Anthropocene (the current geological age, which is seen as the one during which human activity has been the dominant factor on the climate and the environment), Tomorrow, and Mankind. With interactive exhibits, the place is quite fascinating. But we were drained and couldn't really focus on the messages being delivered. Having already parted ways with Sonia and Boris, we decided to head back to the ship.

      Along the way, we found the Museo de Arte do Rio (also free for those over 60). We made a quick detour to check out the exhibits and also take advantage of the air conditioning. Unlike the Museum of Tomorrow which was fairly crowded, the Art Museum was fairly deserted, which made the visit more pleasurable.

      Then, seeking shade where we found it, we walked back to the port. The distance wasn't far, but the hot temperature — 86F at the time — made it quite the slog.

      We were so drained by the time we re-embarked Insignia that we considered canceling our Toscana dinner reservation for tonight. But a refreshing shower revived us enough to reconsider those dinner plans … especially since we knew it would be quieter up there at one of our favorite aft-facing tables.

      Tomorrow we have an early start to our day … hoping to make the most of the cooler morning hours since it is supposed to be even hotter than today … UGH!
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    • Day 9

      Cascatinha Taunay

      January 3 in Brazil ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Heute ging es um ca. 9 Uhr morgens per Jeep Richtung Jungel zu den „Cascatinha Taunay“ - die Taunay Wasserfälle.
      Die Fahrt auf der Ladefläche machte unheimlich Spass und dauerte knapp eine Stunde.
      Unser Guide „Georg“ war ein richtig lustiger Kauz, der alle Teilnehmer auf portugiesisch, spanisch und deutsch informierte. Speziell uns Jungs erzählte er ständig Witze über Argentinier, die eigentlich nur lustig waren weil er sie so knuffig erzählte.
      Aber, wenn der Guide Spass hat, haben alle Spass und so gönnten wir uns an der Tanke bevor es los ging noch ein Bierchen mit Georg 😉

      Leider waren de Wasserfälle kleiner als erwartet, denn es war nur ein Wasserfall. Dafür war der Jungelrundweg mal ein schöner Einblick in Rio‘s Natur. Georg hatte zu fast jedem Baum eine Geschichte, also eine Menge zu erzählen, was aber Argentinier eh nicht verstehen würden 😉
      Keine Ahnung was er an denen gefressen hat…

      Auf dem Rückweg hielten wir noch am „Vista Chinesa“, ein Aussichtspunkt im stile eines chinesischen Pavillons. Von hier hatte man wieder einen sehr schönen Ausblick auf zentral Rio.
      Und schon ging es wieder mit dem Jeep zurück.
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