Rio, Day 1

Adam and I flew into Rio early morning on a rainy Saturday and had an hour or two to relax in our hotel before Maria, a former neighbor, picked us up to go to Sitio Roberto Burle Marx where we had an early morning reservation for a tour of Brazil’s most well-known landscape architect’s home and gardens. The gardens are beautiful–Burle Marx was actually the first landscape architect to include Brazilian plants in garden designs and he hadn’t even studied landscape architecture–his background was actually in the fine arts and it’s easy to see how this background enhanced his talents as a landscape architect.

Burle Marx Gardens 1

Burle Marx Gardens 2

Burle Marx Gardens 3

After lunch at a local per kilo place (a buffet-style restaurant where you pay by the pound–popular in Brazil and generally better quality than the buffet restaurants in the States), we went to a museum featuring Brazilian folk art, followed by Museu de Arte Moderna. Maria mentioned there was a festival within walking distance and asked if we wanted to go and I am really glad we said yes.

For Adam and I, it was basically the Brazilian version of the Fancy Food Show–there were tons of vendors from all over Brazil selling foods and crafts. It must have been well advertised because it was packed with Cariocas (people who live in Rio). Sadly, we only had an hour to spare–since sampling food would have quickly eaten up the time, I decided to focus on the crafts and just sampled a few foods. Adam happily took the opportunity to sample a number of cachacas. The walk back to the car was long, and it didn’t help that my new sandals were extremely painful but I was still determined to eat at a highly recommended per kilo restaurant and check out a shopping mall in the same neighborhood. The mall was an expensive one (the kind where nothing had price tags) and the restaurant was good but not spectacular. All in all, however, it was a nice first day in Rio and we were grateful that Maria was kind enough to take us around the city!

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