First stop - Rio!!
Hi all! Apologies for the delay in updating the page but, as you can imagine, we´ve had better things to do! We`ve been in SA 2 weeks now but Mel will update you on the amazing Iguazu Falls while I´m all about Rio. First night we arrived in we were taken aback by our micro basic double room but the hostel turned out to be really nice, with mel making the most of the lounge room hammocks. I managed to drag her lazy (!) ass out of the hostel long enough for her to see her team´s asses handed to them on a plate during the Leinster v Munster game in an ingeniously-called Irish pub, "Irish Pub".
Copacabana beach was gorgeous but the waves there tried to relieve us of our bikini tops and bottoms- gas craic altogether, although I am a bit alarmed at Mel`s potty mouth with phrases like "Holy F*ckin Sh!t" being shouted at the top of her voice whenever a wave came near us. Thankfully I don`t think the Brazilians understood the Donegal accent. We changed to the Botafogo hostel on Mon 4th to save some reais and it was a short trip to the Sugar Loaf, our visit timed perfectly to catch the views at dusk and then see the city light up beneath us as the sun set. Next we visited Santa Theresa, a gorgeous old part of Rio with cobbled streets and colonial houses. That night we checked out the local nightlife and saw a deadly Brazilian band where Mel and I tried our hand/feet at Samba....I must admit Mel was slightly better at it than me, a point proven when I stepped on my poor partner`s toe!
Next day, Christ the Redeemer was as amazing as you`d imagine it to be. Mel and I did the typical tourist stance of arms outstretched so enjoy the cheesy shots. The Rio highlight for me was the bike ride through the favela - an unbelievable combination of terror (using the 5 inches between 2 passing buses to pass one of them out!) and exhilaration. The favela (Brazilian slums) was nothing like I´d ever seen before, with one room houses opening straight onto tiny narrow streets with sewarage running alongside, a side of a mountain which has now become home to 200,000 people . That night we headed out dancing again with fellow backpackers, with the brazilians changing their dance partners as frequently as mel buys dresses. On Sat 9th Mel and I had a little taste of paradise on our boat trip to Ilha Grande. There was a band to entertain us as we floated round the islands and went swimming in beautiful blue seas. A great way to finish off our 10 days in Rio.
My only complaint about Rio were the bites I got!Mel prob isn`t too happy either considering she got one where the sun don`t shine (which she`d already managed to burn on Copacabana beach, put it away Mel!). I got 41 in about 3 days but a special shout out goes to Devoy and her recommendation to bring Bounce sheets-although not being used for the intended purposes, the mosquitos hate them so I wear one tied to my belt which is slightly more popular than the garlic tablets I`ve been taking, which keep both the mosquitos, and Brazilians, away...