South America by zanyzan
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South America

  • Apr 05, 2015
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South America

2 weeks went really fast.  I had a fantastic time but a lot of that was due to the group I was with.  The initial part of the trip was just the 2 of us (me and Bro), starting off in Buenos Aries (BA) and then a 2.5 hour ferry ride to Montevideo .BA is more like a European City than Rio with its squares, Starbucks and baroque architecture.  I liked the Boca area with its vibrant buildings, wall murals and and tango dancing in the cafes, even though it was overly touristy.   The Argentines love Messi but they worship Maradonna going by the statues of him everywhere in La Boca. The meal recommended by my ex-colleague Soh Ming  at Desnivel was excellent – the best steak you will ever eat, and this is coming from someone who always avoids the steak back home.  Apart from the steak, BA was rather expensive –even supermarkets and souvenirs. The streets are pretty dirty with rubbish everywhere and not much wonderful sightseeing to be done though what we did see what pretty.The weather was hot but we managed it and it was less humid than Brazil.  Montevideo was a refreshing change from the hectic and noisy BA but very small with not so much to see, although pleasant to sit on the sea front after devouring the local chivitos.Once we joined the group (G adventures) the trip really took off.  It was a group of 16 led by Guillermo, our CEO.  Everyone hailed from different countries and one thing in common was a great sense of humor, which helped with the multiple and sometimes long transfers.Iguaçu was the most impressive, in fact it was astounding.  The views were spectacular.  Pictures does not even come close; you really need to experience it. Iguaçu is a series of falls with tonnes of reddish – brown water rushing with such noise. It was really deafening.  Going to the different levels of the falls, one gets closer and closer, even getting drenched at some of the viewing platforms. The boat ride was definitely one of the highlights, getting up very close to the waterfalls and getting soaked! I enjoyed our next stop, Paraty as it was a quaint town with colonial style pretty houses and a guide who allegedly was speaking English!I wasn’t so keen on Ilha Grande – beaches aren’t really my thing, nor are mosquito bites although the hotel breakfast and dinners on the beach made up for it.  I think we could have missed Ilha Grande out, even foregoing the 2 hours of hiking to Lopes Mendes beach (one of the top 10 beaches in Brazil) with it’s fine white sand and crashing waves, and instead could have headed straight to Rio.Rio is a very 3rd world city. I expected it to be richer, more like Mexico, but it is hot, humid and smelly.  A lot of the places in the central part of town are rather dilapidated, in sharp contrast to the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema.  Although Sugar Loaf mountain and Christ the Redeemer was impressive (the latter taking many vehicles to reach there) with the most fantastic views of the city and the harbor, I don’t think I will be going back. The favelas of Rosario were a little revolting and smelt of sewage on a humid day. The colorful buildings looked nice but still dilapidated with rubbish strewn everywhere as there is no system to collect it. However the people were friendly , even skinny drug dealers hanging in the doorway with an oversized machine gun.  Generally we encountered friendly and polite people in South American although English (and even Spanish) is limited in Brazil.  In Rio, the taxi driver even gave my brother his wallet back after he inadvertently left it in the front seat.  One thing I noticed on my trip to South America is the size of the people; vast, even the children. People on the central line look like anorexics in comparison.  The ladies wear skirts, unlike in Mexico, and clothes there are far too small for them. And a lot of the women have tattoos. In fact I have not seen so many tattoos on females especially covering their whole back!

Apr 05, 2015
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South America

This post has 25 photos Apr 05, 2015Comments (2)105 views
2 weeks went really fast.  I had a fantastic time but a lot of that was due to the group I was with.  The initial part of the trip was just the 2 of us (me and Bro), starting off in Buenos Aries (BA) and then a 2.5 hour ferry ride to Montevideo .

BA is more like a European City than Rio with its squares, Starbucks and baroque architecture.  I liked the Boca area with its vibrant buildings, wall murals and and tango dancing in the cafes, even though it was overly touristy.   The Argentines love Messi but they worship Maradonna going by the statues of him everywhere in La Boca. The meal recommended by my ex-colleague Soh Ming  at Desnivel was excellent – the best steak you will ever eat, and this is coming from someone who always avoids the steak back home.  Apart from the steak, BA was rather expensive –even supermarkets and souvenirs. The streets are pretty dirty with rubbish everywhere and not much wonderful sightseeing to be done though what we did see what pretty.

The weather was hot but we managed it and it was less humid than Brazil.  Montevideo was a refreshing change from the hectic and noisy BA but very small with not so much to see, although pleasant to sit on the sea front after devouring the local chivitos.

Once we joined the group (G adventures) the trip really took off.  It was a group of 16 led by Guillermo, our CEO.  Everyone hailed from different countries and one thing in common was a great sense of humor, which helped with the multiple and sometimes long transfers.

Iguaçu was the most impressive, in fact it was astounding.  The views were spectacular.  Pictures does not even come close; you really need to experience it. Iguaçu is a series of falls with tonnes of reddish – brown water rushing with such noise. It was really deafening.  Going to the different levels of the falls, one gets closer and closer, even getting drenched at some of the viewing platforms. The boat ride was definitely one of the highlights, getting up very close to the waterfalls and getting soaked! 

I enjoyed our next stop, Paraty as it was a quaint town with colonial style pretty houses and a guide who allegedly was speaking English!

I wasn’t so keen on Ilha Grande – beaches aren’t really my thing, nor are mosquito bites although the hotel breakfast and dinners on the beach made up for it.  I think we could have missed Ilha Grande out, even foregoing the 2 hours of hiking to Lopes Mendes beach (one of the top 10 beaches in Brazil) with it’s fine white sand and crashing waves, and instead could have headed straight to Rio.

Rio is a very 3rd world city. I expected it to be richer, more like Mexico, but it is hot, humid and smelly.  A lot of the places in the central part of town are rather dilapidated, in sharp contrast to the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema.  Although Sugar Loaf mountain and Christ the Redeemer was impressive (the latter taking many vehicles to reach there) with the most fantastic views of the city and the harbor, I don’t think I will be going back. 

The favelas of Rosario were a little revolting and smelt of sewage on a humid day. The colorful buildings looked nice but still dilapidated with rubbish strewn everywhere as there is no system to collect it. However the people were friendly , even skinny drug dealers hanging in the doorway with an oversized machine gun.  Generally we encountered friendly and polite people in South American although English (and even Spanish) is limited in Brazil.  In Rio, the taxi driver even gave my brother his wallet back after he inadvertently left it in the front seat.  

One thing I noticed on my trip to South America is the size of the people; vast, even the children. People on the central line look like anorexics in comparison.  The ladies wear skirts, unlike in Mexico, and clothes there are far too small for them. And a lot of the women have tattoos. In fact I have not seen so many tattoos on females especially covering their whole back!


Old town, Montevideo
7 Old town, Montevideo, Uruguary

Old town, Montevideo

Apr 05, 2015
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7 Old town, Montevideo, Uruguary Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:15 PM
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City Gate, Montevideo, Uruguay
10 City Gate, Montevideo, Uruguay

City Gate, Montevideo, Uruguay

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La Boca, Buenos Aires
17 Mural, La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina

La Boca, Buenos Aires

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17 Mural, La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:15 PM
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La Boca, Buenos Aires
19 La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina

La Boca, Buenos Aires

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Maradonna, La Boca, Buenos Aires
20 La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Maradonna, La Boca, Buenos Aires

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20 La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:15 PM
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Congress Building, Buenos Aires
23 Congress Building, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Congress Building, Buenos Aires

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Iguazu Falls
29 Iguazu falls

Iguazu Falls

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Iguazu Falls
30 Iguazu falls

Iguazu Falls

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Iguazu Falls
34 Iguazu falls

Iguazu Falls

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34 Iguazu falls Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:15 PM
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Iguazu Falls
40 Close up Iguazu Falls, Brazil side

Iguazu Falls

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40 Close up Iguazu Falls, Brazil side Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Iguazu Falls
41 Iguazu Falls

Iguazu Falls

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41 Iguazu Falls Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Paraty, Brazil
44 Paraty, Brazil

Paraty, Brazil

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44 Paraty, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Seafood Platter, Paraty, Brazil
47 Seafood Platter, Paraty, Brazil

Seafood Platter, Paraty, Brazil

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47 Seafood Platter, Paraty, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Ilha Grande, Brazil
50 Ilha Grande, Brazil

Ilha Grande, Brazil

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50 Ilha Grande, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Ilha Grande, Brazil
52 Ilha Grande, Brazil

Ilha Grande, Brazil

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52 Ilha Grande, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Lopes Mendes, Ilha Grande, Brazil
53 Lopes mendes beach, Rio

Lopes Mendes, Ilha Grande, Brazil

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53 Lopes mendes beach, Rio Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Our Guide for the trip, Guillermo.
54 Our Guide Guillermo on the beach

Our Guide for the trip, Guillermo.

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54 Our Guide Guillermo on the beach Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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View of Sugar Loaf Mountain, Rio
56 Sugar LoafMountain, Rio

View of Sugar Loaf Mountain, Rio

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56 Sugar LoafMountain, Rio Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Christ the Redeemer, Rio
59 Christ the Redeemer, Rio, Brazil

Christ the Redeemer, Rio

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59 Christ the Redeemer, Rio, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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View from Christ the Redeemer, Rio
60 View of Rio

View from Christ the Redeemer, Rio

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60 View of Rio Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Inside Favela Rosario, Rio
63 Inside the Favela Rosario, Rio, Brazil

Inside Favela Rosario, Rio

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63 Inside the Favela Rosario, Rio, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:16 PM
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Favelas, Rio
64 Favela, Rio, Brazio

Favelas, Rio

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64 Favela, Rio, Brazio Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:17 PM
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San Sebastian Cathedral, Rio
67 San Sebastian Cathedral, Rio, Brazil

San Sebastian Cathedral, Rio

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67 San Sebastian Cathedral, Rio, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:17 PM
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Arches, RIo
68 Aquaduct, Rio, Brazil

Arches, RIo

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68 Aquaduct, Rio, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:17 PM
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Escadaria Selarón, Rio
69 Steps, Rio, Brazil

Escadaria Selarón, Rio

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69 Steps, Rio, Brazil Capture Date: Apr 4, 2015 03:17 PM
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Comments

RashApr 6, 2015 12:11 AM

zan - wow looks an amazing trip ... Thanks for sharing

SYFApr 27, 2015 07:33 AM

Awesome pictures took me back to my travelling days.
Small correction on your outstanding blog its Ying not Ming Hahahahaha
Looking forward to your next blog!

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