On the last day of your regular program in the Pantanal you will fly back from Campo Grande to Rio de Janeiro city airport Santos Dumont with TAM flight JJ3773/3958 CGR/SDU at 1635/2155 via São Paulo (CGH). Transfer to hotel at Copacabana or Riding Brazil´s guest house Villa Paradiso for overnight.
Despite of superlatives and stereotypes, Rio de Janeiro can be considered one of the world most beautiful and fascinating cities. Hosting some 10 million inhabitants, Rio is squeezed in between the green mountains of the coastal rainforest and tropical beaches at the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. The city essentially shows the lifestyle of a South American metropolis, with a strong touch of tropical laissez-faire. A wide range of scenic, cultural and architectural highlights prove that the city does not strive exclusively on Samba and Carnival. A visit to the Sugar Loaf, the Corcovado Mountain and a bath at the famous beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema is obviously a must. The visitor should not miss out, however on a stroll through the historical part of the city. Colorful, loud and busy, the city displays colonial architecture and − in contrast − hyper modern office buildings, banks and business centers. But there are also quite corners and hidden places, where one can relax and meditate; surrounded by the exuberant tropical nature that makes Rio de Janeiro so attractive, for visitors and locals alike.
Morning at leisure. How about checking out Copacabana and Ipanema beaches? In the afternoon we take you for a cable car ride to the top of the 396 m high Sugar Loaf, world famous symbol of Rio de Janeiro, offering astonishing views of the ocean, the bay, the fortresses on the coast, the city of Niterói on the other side of the bay, the surrounding mountains and the city itself. The exuberant tropical vegetation on this island mountain is an attraction by itself. Right underneath the Sugar Loaf is a hidden coastal path where you can take a relaxing walk, while appreciating the views over the sea and watch guenons and several species of humming birds. At night you may want to dine in one of Rio's fine specialty restaurants that we would be pleased to suggest.
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Our guide picks you up early this morning for a full day city tour, starting with a walk through downtown Rio de Janeiro, including the Cinelândia square with the 1909 built Teatro Municipal, which is inspired by the Paris opera house. Next is the futuristic Cathedral Catedral Metropolitana, the Petrobrás and BNDES buildings - outstanding example of modern Brazilian architecture. After a few minutes of walk you arrive at the Santo Antônio Convent, Rio's oldest baroque church with a monastery from the 17th century, located above the Largo da Carioca, where street vendors are disputing space with preachers of indefinable credos. Next stops are the Real Gabinete Português de Leitura, a splendid old library of 1888, and finally the famous Confeitaria Colombo where we break for an Espresso. Now you board the last remaining wooded tram, built 1892. The ride takes you over an aqueduct from 1750, into the hills to the idyllic artist's neighborhood Santa Teresa. Take a stroll through the small cobblestone streets with historic mansions, studios, bars and handy craft shops. On return, visit the Chácara do Céu Museum with notable works from Brazil's colonial epoch and exhibition of modern art. At night, instead of the usual tourist samba shows, you may want to go to one of the nightclubs that feature some of the best of Bossa Nova and Samba Jazz live music.
Pick up at the hotel and drive up to the 710 m high Corcovado Mountain with its world-famous Christ the Redeemer statue which, together with the Sugar Loaf, are Rio de Janeiro's best known symbols. From up here the panoramic view over the city of Rio de Janeiro, including the Southern and Northern Zone, is unique. Afterwards we take the road through the Floresta da Tijuca National Park, the world's largest tropical urban forest. You will enjoy breathtaking views, waterfalls and exuberant tropical nature of the Atlantic Coastal Rainforest. The 1808 founded Jardim Botânico, is considered by many one of the most beautiful botanic gardens in the world. A leisurely stroll through leads through 7.200 species of flowers, plants and trees makes the delight of the nature loving visitor. The garden is designed as a landscape park and beautifully embedded at the foothills of the surrounding mountains. Return to the hotel. At night you dine in one of Rio's finest specialty restaurants for seafood and barbecue. One of the better hints for the later part of the evening, is downtown Lapa quarters, featuring plenty of lively bars, dance and music halls. Maybe your hips need some Brazilian swing after all that riding...
Depending on the departure of your international flight you may just want to spend this day at leisure, or do some more sight seeing. In this case please ask your guide for options. Transfer to the airport.
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€ 790 p.p. double room occupancy
Add-on single room occupancy: € 220
For your information, this itinerary focuses on the cultural aspects and some natural highlights of Rio de Janeiro. There are, however a number of other activities available to the more demanding client, such as hiking in the tropical mountains and rain forests that frame the city, sailing in the bay and on the coast line for several hours or even days, hang gliding at the southern slopes of the Tijuca massif, offering breathtaking views over mountains, forests and beaches, or a scenic ocean kayak ride around the sugar loaf, and much more.