Posted by: Abby Rhodes | March 18, 2010

Scene change

View of Rio from Morro de Açúcar

The city of Rio de Janeiro has inspired writers, singers, and musicians all over the world.  Until you see it for your own eyes, it’s all fantasy and intrigue.  The WIU Wind Ensemble is finding that, so far, Rio isn’t too different from many major U.S. cities.

While Salvador, with its narrow alleys and quaint, brightly painted commercial districts, oozes with charm similar to European cities, Rio is more modern, but less attractive.  Once lined in palaces, the area facing Copacabana beach is now tightly packed with high rises of various shades of gray.  Look toward the beach, or into the distance at the  favelas peaking out over the city, and you’ll see why despite its bland aesthetics within, Rio is considered one of the most beautiful places on Earth.

Sugarloaf Mtn. cable car

The band spent the first half of the day as tourists, riding cable cars to the top of Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain), which towers 1,300 feet above the harbor.  At the mid-way stop on Morro de Açúcar, visitors are  invited to stroll along a bamboo-lined “monkey trail.”  We we greeted by several of the pathway’s hungry namesakes, and even spotted one wearing a blue baseball cap and white tennis shoes (see video below).

Morro de Açúcar inhabitants



  1. hahah….the video make me laugh….love the photos!! it’s soo beautiful!!

  2. Im a little behind on blogging.. this is for thursday..the pictures are beautiful and that video was really funny…the cable car thing kinda scares me. Monkeys are so cute!!

  3. That city is BEAUTIFUL!!! i want to go there!

  4. Wow. I guess evolution does skip generations!
    Just kidding, quite possibly one of the silliest virals my eyes have perceived. And beautiful photography! The first one of Rio is my favorite.

  5. I love how beautiful the pictures are! Seeing them with my own eyes must be even better. The monkeys were so cute!

  6. Wow… video was hilarious, and your pictures are amazing. I’m not sure whether I really want to go on the skylift or would be terrified… Nice photography!

  7. 🙂 i like the monkey too, and the view of the city is beautiful. I love it!

  8. lol i like the monkeys 😀

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