David & Geri The Smiths
  Missionaries to Londrina, Brazil 
Serving with Baptist Mid-Missions since 1987
Victory Baptist Church in Londrina









Rio de Janeiro
Sugar Loaf Mountain
Photo by: Rachel C. Smith
Rio de Janeiro city flag
Rio de Janeiro City Flag
Rio de Janeiro state flag
Rio de Janeiro State Flag
Brazil Flag
Brazil Flag
Christ the Redeemer Statue / Corcovado Mountain 

The famous “Christ the Redeemer Statue” in Rio de Janeiro is one of the most recognized photo images from Brazil.  Over 300,000 people visit this statue each year.  The French donated the statue in honor of Brazil's 100th Anniversary of their Independence.  The statue itself is about 100 feet high and sits on top of Corcovado Mountain, which is about 2,400 feet high.  This is one of the highest places in Rio and gives a marvelous panoramic view of Rio de Janeiro.  From the base of the Christ the Redeemer Statue’s look out one can see just about all of the major tourist sites in Rio de Janeiro: Sugar Loaf Mountain, Guanabara Bay, Ipanema Beach (and most of the other beaches), Copacabana Beach, the Lagoon, the the Niteroi-Rio Bridge, and much more.

Off site link to photos of Christ the Redeemer Statue: http://www.brasilcontact.com
Sugar Loaf Mountain

Sugar Loaf Mountain is one of the most beautiful photo opportunities in Rio de Janeiro.  There are two high, enormous boulders that are called Urca Hill and Sugar Loaf Mountain.  Urca Hill is 772 feet high (220 meters high) and is the shorter of the two.  The principal mountain is Sugar Loaf which is the highest at 1,319 feet (396 meters high) according to the official Sugar Loaf Mt Website.  There is a cable car that first takes you to Urca Hill and then another that takes you up to the top of Sugar Loaf.  A James Bond film was filmed at this sight and had Mr. Jaws jumping from one cable car to another while it was in motion.  From the top of Sugar Loaf one can see Copacabana Beach, Red Beach, Flamingo, downtown, Christ the Redeemer Statue, and Niteroi.

Off site link to photos of Sugar Loaf and Urca Hill: Photo gallery of Sugar Loaf

Tijuca Rainforest

This rain forest was the master mind of King Dom Pedro II in 1861.  This rainforest is just a few miles from Rio de Janeiro.  This park goes from sea level to a height of 3315 feet (1020 meters).  It has 30 waterfalls and some 300 different plant species and up to  100 animal species.

 Off site link to information & photos of the Tijuca Rainforest:  Tijuca Rainforest

 

Copacabana Beach

Copacabana Beach is famous for its beautiful wide sidewalk, its beautiful beach, and the beautiful 1930 style of buildings that line the boulevard.  One of the most beautiful buildings on this boulevard is the famous Copacabana Palace Hotel. 

Copacabana Palace Hotel Photos

1 of 2 sand art castles on beach in rio castle sand art on beach in rio
group in front of maracana stadium Maracana Soccer Stadium:

This is the World´s Largest Soccer Stadium. It will also be one of the main stadiums for the FIFA World Cup  games in Brazil in 2014.   Off site link: Maracana Stadium Photos
History of Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro was discovered on January 1, 1502, by Portuguese explorer Gaspar de Lemos.  When Gaspar de Lemos entered the bay, he thought he had found the mouth of a huge river; therefore, he called the name of that river “Rio de January” means “January River.”  The first people to settle the Rio de Janeiro area were the French.  These Frenchmen were harvesting Brazil wood trees, so they were not really settling the area.  In 1555, three French ships of settlers arrived in the Rio e Janeiro bay.  That bay is called Guanabara.  The French settled on a small island in the bay of Guanabara and called their settlement Antarctic France. In 1560, the  Portuguese attacked the poorly equipped French and were able to expel them from the area. The Portuguese had problems with the native Tamoio Indians, but eventually they were able to drive the Tamoio Indians from the area as well. In 1567 the Portuguese set up a a fortified town (Castelo) on the hill now called "Morro Castelo." In 1763, the capitol of Brazil was moved from Salvador, Bahia, to Rio de Janeiro.  Rio de Janeiro continued as the capitol of Brazil until 1960 when the city of Brasilia was being built and the capitol of Brazil moved there.  

Rio de Janeiro is one of the most picturesque cities in Brazil with it’s 3,000 feet high mountains that drop right down to the coast line.  The bird's eye views of Rio de Janeiro are incredible.  That is one of the reasons it is called the “Marvelous City.”  Crime is a very big problem in Rio de Janeiro and the police are out gunned by the drug lords.  So when one is in Rio de Janeiro, one should take the guided city tours, be aware of who is around them, and follow the safety guidelines of their Hotel or tour guides.  If a foreign tourist stays in the tourist areas, he should be alright.  The city of Rio de Janeiro does its best to make sure that the tourist areas are safe and enjoyable.

Biography: Noble, John,  Brazil (Melbourne, Australia: Lonely Planet Publications, 2002), p. 171-172.

Baptist History in Rio de Janeiro

The Southern Baptist Convention makes Rio de Janeiro their headquarters in Brazil.  It is one of their strong holds.  Across the bay from Rio de Janeiro is Niteroi.  That city has a SBC [called CBB in Portuguese] church that runs 5000+. 

In 1990, Baptist Mid-Missions missionaries Neal and Alice Smith moved to Rio de Janeiro and were able to start some churches before they retired.  Today, BMM missionaries have started the following churches in the Metropolitan Rio de Janeiro area: Jacarepaguá, Ilha do Governador, Campo Comprido (started by BMM missionaries C. A. and Thelma Nickells), and a work on the Niteroi side of the bay.   

a catholic church in rio

 

Links(these links are off of this website):

History of Rio de Janeiro: http://www.macalester.edu/courses/GEOG61/chad/history.htm

Top places to visit in Rio:  http://gosouthamerica.about.com/od/brazgeog/tp/whattodo.htm

Top places to visit in Rio:  http://www.biosferabrasil.com/atracoes.php?cod_destino=6

a purple and white orchid

 

 

 

 

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