Two atmopsheres in one tour ! We will start with the visit of the Pereirão Favela where I have been living for 7 years. You will get all the information for you to understand why favelas exist in Brazil, I will speak about their history, their arquitecture and the way of life in the favela.
We will then discover the richest neighborhood of the 19th century : Santa Teresa. Very close to Lapa and City Centre, Santa Teresa may be the most charming district of Rio. Its sinuous streets will take you to amazing points of view. Luxurious vegetation is everywhere as the Tijuca Forest is not far... Its many popular bars and restaurants, its ateliés, its cinema with 45 seats, the yellow tram or the famous colorful stairs of the Chilean artist Selaron will immerse you in the authentic and bohemian Rio. This district is really unique thanks to its beautiful and colourful colonial houses, its grafitis, its paved roads... We will end the tour in Lapa.
on the steps of the white church of the Largo do Machado square in Flamengo district, Metro : Largo do Machado
TIME : 10h or 14h. the tour lasts about 4 hours, you need good walking shoes.
Here some pics of this tour
(if you prefer to keep the surprise you should not see them, up to you!)
WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT A FAVELA
Please do not think that a favela is a dangerous slum. Poor people had to do everything by their own due to the lack of urban policy in the 50s and 60s. They took the land available and started to create this second world... Nowadays, people in favelas do have access to drinkable water, electricity, sewage system, houses are built with bricks and concrete... Some favelas are poorer than others, but nobody is starving, homeless or begging money. 90% of its inhabitants do have a job. If the favela can be poor, it is not that miserable.
You are more than welcome to do this tour so you can change your mind if you have some bad stereotypes about the favelas. It is not at all what you can read in some
(ignorant?) guide books. Moreover, people are very nice and warm, there is a very friendly atmosphere, you feel like if you were in a village. There are a lot of life, kids playing, neighbors
speaking on their entrance doors... 25% of the population of Rio lives in a Favela (1,4 million of people), and you can find them everywhere in the city as there are on the hills. In total, there
are 950 favelas in Rio. The contrast with the rich neighborhood close by is significant, visiting a favela with a knowledgeable guide is in my opinion very important if you want to get a better
understanding of the complex Brazilian society. A good Favela Tour is not voyeurism, it is more an open mindedness and cultural tour to catch correctly the issues of Brazilian big