I had seen the pictures and thought I knew what to expect, but it wasn’t until I traveled to Brazil and was standing atop Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro that I realized just how insane the city’s skyline really is. It’s easy to misjudge a locale by its photos and in the case of most places that means it doesn’t live up to expectations, but Rio surpassed everything I predicted it would be.
From the ground it seems the mountains tower overhead and to get to the next neighborhood is always a trek around the next big hill, but it isn’t until you’re above that you realize the city itself sprawls around and crawls up the mountains – doesn’t stop until it hits the shore. I have to admit that I’m not a person who is blow away easily, but Rio is one of the few places that is a cliche in that it took my breath away.
I generally avoid lines and tourist traps (and major heights), but a trip up Sugarloaf Mountain is a “when in Rome” moment. But I must warn you–if you’re afraid of jam-packed cars dangling from thin wires then you may have a slight panic attack. But know that the 7 minute frenzy imagining every possible bad outcome will be worth the amazing view (and the pics you’ll have to show for it). And also know it’s not one, but two, rides to the top. Just in case you’re that person.
Traveling – it’s leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. — Ibn Battuta
We were told the crowds are highest at the end of the day, but we couldn’t resist sticking around for the sunset – and it was worth it. Sit outside, order a caipirinha at the restaurant, and watch the city come alive.
Traveling to Rio?
Don’t miss Sugarloaf Mountain!
More info on hours and how to get there.