WORLD DISCOVERY ADDICT

This blog tell about my travels all around the world, discovering islands, lagoons, active volcanoes, cities and meeting people.

08 février 2009

RIO DE JANEIRO, THE TIJUCA FOREST

After some days in Copacabana tumult we were hoping for more peaceful and more greenery.

Despite its size, Rio has the particularity to have said it, the largest urban forest in the world: the Tijuca Forest.

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After colonization, the Portuguese settlers began to cultivate coffee, and little by little mountainous region of Rio, previously covered by Atlantic forest were cleared and planted with tea and coffee. May be aware of the ecological disaster that is occurring (erosion, drought), Emperor Pedro II, took the initiative to move more plantations back in the land and replant the area around Rio. The reforestation began in the area adjacent to the botanical garden, and it is the tree of botanical garden which provided the seedlings and cuttings for reforestation. Today, the forest area has been increased to 3900ha. But surrounded by over forty favelas, it is threatened by poaching and human invasion. Therefore close monitoring, including by satellite is set up.


This morning a jeep pick up us at the hotel, we take the direction of the botanical garden and climb a beautiful road winding through the forest.

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The first point of interest is the monkeys waterfall, a small waterfall normally frequented by monkeys, but when we went they were invisible.

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A little further up the place we called "the table of the emperor”, favorite picnic spot of Emperor Pedro II and his court, when the temperature became too high in Rio. From here you can take beautiful photos of Corcovado between the trees, but in the morning, we have the sun in front which is not good for picture.

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Slightly above, you reach the Chinese View Point. The site owes its name to the Chinese settlers came to work in this area at the time of the culture of tea and coffee. From this area, the point of view over Rio, the Guanabara Bay and the Corcovado is superb, and this is one of the few points where we can embrace a glance Sugar Loaf and Corcovado.

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The jeep then goes on Alto da Boa Vista, a pleasant village nestled in the forest, then we climb to the Taunay Waterfall.

Another French imprint! Nicolas Antoine Taunay was a painter in the era of revolution and empire. With the fall of Napoleon, he settled in Rio and, in line with its ideals of nature and ecology, it will acquire a reputation, not only by his paintings, but also by his talents to grow plants. It will build a house in the Tijuca Forest, near the waterfall that keeps his name today.

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This waterfall of a hundred feet high, is very photogenic and place, much frequented by tourists and Cariocas, is a starting point for many opportunities for walks in the surrounding forest.

We reach then the Mayrink chapel, built in the early 19th century and painted pink. On the inside you can see copies of paintings by Candido Portinari, a famous Brazilian artist
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Pushing a further our discovery, we will walk in the forest to discover the vegetation: eucalyptus soft red bark, wood or iron red tree brazil

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and some specimens of the fauna of this family as koati

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or procession of ants carrying their burden of leaves.

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Returning to our hotel will be joining the coast to Sao Corado, where the paragliders launching from the rock Bonita to 512m above sea level, are landing.

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Posté par seafire44 à 09:46 - South America - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
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