So it’s day 4 in Rio and so far its been the perfect combination of lively and chill. My first full day was spent exactly how I had planned- soaking up the sun on the famous Ipanema beach and sipping homemade caipirinha’s, I am super fortunate in that I tan just by THINKING about the sun, so after just an hour I was sporting a very noticeable bikini tan line which complimented my new Brazilian wax (when in Rome) perfectly. One of the best things about staying with friends who live in the places you’re travelling too is that you are able to fully immerse yourselves in the local culture, because your friends are the locals! They know all the best spots; where to eat, where to drink, where the best views of the sunsets are etc. and they already have other friends there so it’s easy for you to blend in. This was exactly what happened with me. On the second night Meggie and I went to a churrasco (BBQ) that was being held at one of her friends houses, roasted a big ol’ tray of veg like the bashful vegetarians we are and danced to strange music we’d never heard before. This was until 11.00pm where in true Charlotte fashion I went upstairs for a ‘nap’ and never came back down again. Surely I can’t be the only one who has visions of her bed calling her with an angelic operatic ‘ahhhh’ and who won’t be silenced until you’re hiding smugly under the covers. I can’t help it! The thought of my bed is far too appealing and late nights just don’t suit me. I am one of those people that everyone hates, up at 7.30 breakfast, early morning gym session, clean the entire flat, think of a way to cure world hunger etc. all before lunch. But from what I gathered the party continued on till the early hours of the morning and everyone had a great time, which is all that matters ay!
The next day everyone was pretty hungover (except for me, who’d woken early and cleaned the entire house because I’m an absolute babe) so we took it easy and made our way to the beach for a few hours of sun before heading out to drink beer on ‘the wall’ in Urca with a cracking view of the Big Jesus and then back home where we all snuggled and watched a documentary on one of the worlds most dangerous prisons which is based in Honduras- love a bit ‘o’ juicy crime.
Which brings me to today! What started off to be a reasonably stressful day turned out to be quite a spectacular one. Stressful in that we had morning complications with a flight company so we left late in starting our day, then our Uber driver couldn’t find our destination and we were driving around for what seemed like years, then we had trouble buying sandwiches in a petrol garage… everything just seemed to be a big hoohar. UNTIL we finally reached the base of the trek to Pica Da Tijuca, the highest peak in Rio De Janeiro.
A moderately difficult trek with some incredibly steep inclines but with a result that doesn’t disappoint! For me, a trip is not complete unless there is hike, trek or at least a long walk and this one ticked all of my boxes. We started off with a good pace and I found myself a good sturdy stick that to start with was just to swipe away cobwebs and pretend I was Gandalf but by the end had become my saviour climbing up those tricky bits. During the trek we also came across a hugeeeee green snake slithering his way through the trees and some sort of ruins that we had a good nose around. After a few hours we climbed what can only be described as the death steps up to one of the most stunning views I have ever seen in my life. With a height of 1022m and some parts being barely walkable we were keen to claim our prize and when our little heads appeared out of the foliage and we were rewarded with a full 360 of gorgeous Brazilian landscape. My favourite thing about trekking to a viewpoint is that it’s like digging for treasure, you endure the backache, leg ache, ankle ache, life ache because you know that waiting for you at the end is something that’s going to make you ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ with awe.
It was certainly worth the effort and after spending twenty mins taking plandid pics and admiring the wildlife we began out descent back down, tummies rumbling and ready for food. I made us a hard earned veggie chilli with fresh tomatoes, a generous amount of chilli flakes, green lentils, red kidney beans, a few squares of 90% dark choccie to add some decadence, and served it with brown rice (alla Meggie). Delicious!
What are your go-to meals after a hard days exercise ? I’d love some ideas!
Sleep well loves