We ended our overland trip with Oasis Overland in Rio, arriving just in time for the New Year’s Eve celebration on Copacabana beach. There simply cannot be a better New Year’s Eve celebration anywhere in the world.
NEW YEAR’S EVE
We got to the beach in the early afternoon to set up our tent, hang out, and swim in the ocean. There were people walking around selling absolutely anything you could possibly want to buy, along with several music stages. Music stages were set up all along the beach, with DJs, bands, and samba performances all night long. By the time we counted down to midnight, there were two million people on the beach to celebrate 2017 with a 15-minute firework show. It was the best party I’ve ever been to.
Because of the intensity of this celebration, we brought nothing of value with us to the beach, and therefore have no pictures, but you have to see the fireworks. However, we were able to track down some photos of the customary New Year’s Eve attire in Brazil – tiny bikinis and white speedos!
Once recovered from ringing in the New Year, we got out to see the city a bit. We spent most of our beach time at Ipanema and Copacabana, which are pristine white sand beaches that you can easily spend the whole day at. Also, at any of these beaches, you’ll learn that everything you hear about Brazilian women is true. They are gorgeous and wear very little, but the self-confidence that everyone seems to have walking around in the smallest swimwear I’ve ever seen, is really impressive.
While out and about one day, we discovered the Real Gabinete Português de Leitura, which is a very cool library in the Centro neighborhood. It’s currently under construction but is very ornately decorated on the inside with a large collection of old Portuguese books.
We decided to spend a day visiting the most famous Rio sites, and made our way to Christ the Redeemer and Sugarloaf Mountain. Unfortunately, there were rain clouds low enough to completely block the view of Christ the Redeemer, but we did get some spectacular views of the city and coastline from the top of Sugarloaf Mountain.
View from Sugarloaf Mtn
Rio de Janeiro is a huge city full of culture, but I think we could have used about two weeks to explore all there is to see here. We will definitely be back for another New Year’s Eve party!