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Kate’s Travel Diary

Friday, 15 Oct 2010

Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

MapThe graffiti artists in Rio are seriously dedicated. They somehow manage to get to the middle of featureless walls, and they tag over and over on the same building along in a line. I guess they use ropes and abseil... I don't know. Unfortunately I couldn't get any photos from the bus today.

We headed up in to the hills about an hour out of Rio, to Petropolis. Apparently the Portuguese royalty spent their holidays here, and the buildings are extremely ornate. We visited the President's holiday home - apparently President Lula only used it once, so now it is open for tourists. The photos will tell the story.

Yesterday I relaxed in Rio, wandering along Ipanema Beach watching ridiculously lithe volleyballers training. I managed to find the botanic gardens after wandering the streets for a while. It was kind of disappointing despite being quite beautiful, just because it was so much like the rainforest I'd already seen. Lush, green, not many flowers but really beautiful foliage.

The wildlife in Rio is fun, though the vultures are slightly creepy. We've been stalked by monkeys seeking bananas on the way up Corcovado, and I watched a squirrel hording nuts in the botanic gardens.

I'm now looking out the window watching the favelas twinkle on the hillside. They actually look really beautiful at night, because the housing is so dense they are like fairy lights.