Archive for January 17th, 2021

January 17, 2021

The trip: Poland and Brazil, Europe and America!

Now this was a round trip ! times were tight and needed to make the run Poland to Brazil and back to France! I like to update this post from 2017 in my blog with updated links and text same pictures. Hope you enjoy it as I did.

To say the least, it has been my worse logistically incredible trip ever. To say, been traveling for over 40 years since very young, and to all kinds of continents and countries, cities etc.  This one tops it all. Ok, I have read of others similar situations and maybe mine is not too bad after all, but for me, individual experience it was horrible.

The going was easy, my father took me to the train station in Auray and took there the TER train to Nantes changing trains in Redon for Nantes. At the train station of Nantes took the navette airport bus to the airport of Nantes.  This service I have to say taken it many times and it is wonderful at only 8,50€ the transfer (now is 9€). Arriving a day earlier to catch my very early flight to Krakow, Poland, I stayed in a familiar hotel the Escales Oceania hotel at Nantes airport ,very good deal and done it before nice place. It just across from airport nice easy walking.

nantes-escale-oceania-hotel-lobby-may17

At Nantes Atlantique airport (NTE) took an Air France flight to Roissy CDG (Paris). The connection at CDG was done ok,and took my flight on Easyjet to Krakow Poland; all ok. This taking the easy CDGVAL train that goes from T1 to T3 at CDG and parking spaces as Roissypole train/bus  hub. Once in Krakow took a taxi to my hotel the Sheraton Grand Krakow.(part of the Marriott group)

For reference the Krakow airporthttp://www.krakowairport.pl/en/

And the Sheraton Grand Hotel Krakowhttps://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/krksi-sheraton-grand-krakow/

paris-cdgval-shuttle-from-t2f-to-t2d-and-krakow-may17

As needed to go on towards Brazil, the flight at Krakow on an  Easyjet flight back to Roissy CDG ok. Then, took the LATAM airline flight to Sao Paulo airport at Guarulhos in Brazil. All ok so far.

The rides in familiar territory like Sao Paulo State was wonderful and the visit to some old and new places great again in pretty Brazil in country better indeed. The people,the food ,the natural sites are wonderful and even a lake beach; very popular with locals. I did venture again into the Minas Gerais State as well and the same wonderful experiences in old territories. See my many posts in the blog.

The problem was on the return home from Brazil.  I was to take a flight on LATAM from Sao Paulo Guarulhos airport to Roissy CDG (Paris) at 22h35 or 10:35 pm. This flight for operational reasons not well explained was postponed to leaving from 03h00 or 3am!!! I needed to wait at the Sao Paulo airport for 6 hrs!! too long for my tastes.

As this initial flight was delayed operationally as said, all other flights had to be postponed as well. I arrive at Roissy CDG airport at Saturday 19h10 or 7:10 pm; here had change of flights from the original leaving of 17h to one leaving at 21h35 or 9:35pm arriving at Nantes on Air France by 22h45 or 10:45pm.

A car rental on Europcar was to be waited for me with the keys at the train station of Nantes Mercure centre gare hotel as the normal hours of Europcar closed at 18h15!! A great service for a train station car rental agency!!! The hotel is next door literally attach to the train station!

Once all the paperwork was done with my travel agency.  Still at the Roissy CDG airport trying to get the flight to Nantes I received a call from an Europcar agent that they did not received a copy of my driving license for the car , therefore, could not be protected!!! Apparently, my travel agency did not confirm the copy of my driving license was sent or Europcar decided to rent out the car more profitably to someone else!!!

At that time, already almost 23h or 11 pm, calling the night service of my travel agency FMC, got a hold of an agent who told me all cars were taken as it was the Ascension weekend in France as well as Sunday been Mother’s Day here!!! (Sunday May 28th) lol!  The very same scenario tried to beat out on my taken earlier flights!

I took upon myself to stayed the night in Nantes and asked for a train ride back home on Sunday! So I booked myself the Hotel du Grand Monarque in Nantes right across from the Church of Saint Clément. Written several post on Nantes and its monument on my blog.

I took the hotel because saw it quant and small cozy in a nice good ambiance street of rue Maréchal Joffre. However it has not AC, no elevators/lifts and the room available was in the 4th floor which actually was the attic of the hotel! small don’t ask!!! Not recommended! The hotel has change ownership and is now the Hotel The Originals du Grand Monarque; webpage: http://inter-du-grand-monarque.findhotelnantes.com/en/

At least, I had time in the morning to go for lunch to my fix hub across the train station of Nantes in the Café des Plantes for a nice Andouille steak, café gourmand and nice cold grimbergen blonde beer. This is a busy place at lunch always but never a problem sitting down for lunch, see my post: and as many are closed now due to the virus the webpage is not working well, give you their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/cafedesplantes/

nantes-cafe-des-plantes-across-gare-lunch-with-terrace-view-may17

My return home was finally booked at the next available train Sunday 15h20 or 3:20pm from the train station of Nantes to Auray where again my old reliable father was waiting with my oldest son. I arrive at Auray at 16h44 and home by 17h30 Sunday May 28th!!! Mother’s Day restaurant had to wait for Monday….!

So there you have the adventures of  pedmar10 one of a kind for me; as the consolation, there is always a first lol!!! And then more! Enjoy the trip me tomorrow back to work ; but then another 3 day weekend forthcoming…..on my belle France!!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

January 17, 2021

Exotic vibrant Indonesia!

And here continue with my saga of updating and revising old posts, best thing to do now and it has brought many nice memories back and some finds! Let me tell you a bit about a country visited like 8-9 times in the last 9 years and was a pleasant surprise, Indonesia!

It was another trip to Asia in my book and this time again Indonesia. Its becoming routine and love it. The only thing the flight is very long and tiring on economy class….. I visited Ngoro, Surabaya and then flew to Jakarta. More and pictures in my blog, these are not yet in so here they go! Hope you enjoy the tour!!

I went on my usual often repeated long journey from Nantes Atlantique airport to Roissy CDG T2F on Air France, and then took the CDGVal train to terminal 1 to catch the fly with Singapore Airlines; reaching Chiangi airport in Singapore  after about 13 hrs!!  From the Jakarta airport continue on SQ to Surabaya in Indonesia. The return was the same but coming out from Jakarta to Singapore on SQ and continue to Roissy CDG T1 where the unusual was not to take the cdgval train but two buses one from T1 to T2 and another from T2 to T2CD; weird. Here to catch the AF flight to Nantes Atlantique airport. Long journey indeed!

jakarta-airport-parking-out-mar15

The Roissy CDG (Paris airport) shuttle buses and CDGVal connections in English: https://www.parisaeroport.fr/en/passengers/access/paris-charles-de-gaulle/inter-terminal-shuttles

I had a driver to pick me up which improves tremendously the logistics, and take me to my hotel and office and eatings etc; the traffic on both areas is bad, and in Jakarta the worse ranking amongst the most congested cities in the world. Upon arriving in Surabaya Juanda airport I was taken to the office and then in the evening to my usual hotel the Somerset (see post now Verwood).

Driving by car took me to see a gas station (glamorous::)) petrafirma and the old stores like K Circle and A&W, and eat at Ngoro at the Me Joyo restaurant of local cuisine (one of the advantages of keeping with the locals you know the country well). Very hard to find webpages on it and will just take my word for it, it is good.

This was a short visit here and I move on to bigger Jakarta, where driver was waiting again, thanks God!!! I love to drive but this is too much, can really undertand how they can sustain driving like this every day.  What it says is a 45 minute car drive from hotel to airport is really 1h30 unless you go at midnight ::)

Here, again I stayed at my now usual Grand Kemang hotel right in the entertainment ceter of Jakarta. You really don’t need a car staying here as all shopping, restos, bars to boot are walking distances. It has a great Sperta restaurant. Webpage: https://grandkemang.com/

Stepping out  into Serpong, Tangerang , had a great lunch at the Lembur Kuring restaurant .Very good restaurant of local regional cuisine.  webpage: http://www.lemburkuringjkt.com/facilities-detail.php?venue=bsd

Another day  I was taken for lunch at Sambara another west Sumatran regional cuisine resto that was exotic and authentic . Here you pick the food and then they cook it for you, superb ! Unfortunately I heard the resto has closed yet have a picture for the memories!

jakarta-restaurant-sambara-at-green-terrace-mar15

Lastly, for lunch again on the road was taken to another authentic restaurant Sederhana, a typical padang region cuisine, here they stack the dishes according to how many people to eat and you choose which ones to eat if you try them all they will charge you for all;so be picky but all good stuff ::) They have several branches in the city too. webpage: https://www.restoransederhana.id/

In all the trip back was easy with a driver, and the connection at Chiangi Singapore just barely but since on the same airline, they took me by people mover cars to the gate and I was waited for by Singapore Airlines. At Roissy CDG had to take twice buses to reach my terminal T2F for the first time ever, but you always learn something new traveling lol!

The tourist office of Indonesiahttps://www.indonesia.travel/gb/en/destinations

The tourist office of Surabayahttp://www.surabayatourism.com/

The tourist office of Jakartahttp://jakarta-tourism.go.id/visit/

Now very tired resting on a Sunday nice weather at home, and ready for another trip abroad! Hope you enjoy the post and tell me about your travel connections! Exotic Indonesia once again did the trick.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

January 17, 2021

The Rome antique, and its squares!!!

A while back after many trips solo to Italy decided to take the family to Rome as a starting point for Italy. It was a long two weeks memorable vacation which we all enjoy and now many souvenirs of that trip. Already with several posts in my blog, let me update the introduction to the Rome antique and its squares from August 2013 to you and hope you enjoy it as we did. This of course, in my black and white series counter. Therefore, as an introduction will be brief, plenty more on them in my blog and pictures.

Having traveled to many countries, and been to Italy many times, even Rome , but always on business trips. This time for our summer vacation we decided to attack as a family the eternal city. Much have been said of this wonderful city and its historical meaning, I will tell you what is today.

Even in Italian news programs there was talk of making the via fiori imperiali pedestrian, they tried tested this summer and they like it locals and visitors alike. So maybe something to do for the future on a permanent basis..But is was not to be.

The parking is chaotic, and the road clogged; and I know how to drive in big cities! The metro or subway is very limited even thus the B1 is in expansion construction and the new line C is ,also, under construction; badly needed. Finally, the line 3 was done in 2014.  The bus system is great but for the uninitiated can be complicated because they only post the end line and not the stops, so you need to go to the stop and read the places the bus goes, the online system ATAC is not user friendly either if compare to France or even Spain that I know very well too.

Last we went to the Antiques of Rome, the Colosseum, Foro Romano, and the Palatino, all classical places and known to many.

The colosseum is the great roman amphitheater  built during the Roman Empire and was inaugurated in the year 80. It was then used for performances of great popular appeal, such as hunts and gladiator combats. The first phase of construction of the Colosseum was financed with the proceeds of the plunder of the temple in Jerusalem by Vespasian in 72. His son and successor Titus, in 80, added the third and fourth row of seats .

The Roman Forum or Foro Romano, is indeed a grand event for walking this area alone. The Roman Forum was the old center of ancient Rome where, from the 5C BC to 5C AC, the most important monuments were built. The entire area of the Roman Forum is one of the biggest archeological sites in the world containing temples, buildings and monuments from the Republican era until today. Inside the Roman Forum you can admire the Arch of Settimio Severo, the Temple of Saturno, the Vestali’s house, the Mamertine Prison, the Temple of Antonino and Faustina and the Arch of Tito.

The palatine or Palatino area, great for walking along ancient monuments, This is a large archeological area located between Roman Forum and Circus Maximus. It contains the old Emperor residences, arches, temples and thermae. The legend says that Rome had its origins on this hill and, indeed, recent excavations have shown that people were living in the Palatine since 1000 BC. According to Roman tradition, the Palatine was the place where Romulus and Remus were found by the she-wolf that nursed them keeping them alive in the “Cave of the Lupercale”, probably found in recent excavations, and for this reason on this hill was celebrated every year the festival of Lupercalia.

We , also, walk all over and really like the piazzas or squares of Rome! Coming to Rome ,one of the things I always heard and later briefly came were the wonderful squares there or piazzas in Italian. Therefore, i made it a point to visit as many as possible while there with the family. To remember them there are the piazza Cavour, Colonna, Spagna, Giavanni in laterano, Napoleone I, Navona, Popolo, Venezia, Santa Maria in Trasteverde, San Lorenzo in Lucina, and vittorio emanuele .

The piazza Cavour was very nice along the palace of justice and behind the castel sant angelo, with an imposing statue of Mr Cavour. Piazza Colonna is the center of it with nice old palazzos and buildings with the great galleria alberto sordi and many shopping areas.

Piazza di Spagna is the famous one of the steps, with great shops and history, Bernini’s fountain and the celebrated Spanish Steps rising up towards the Church of Trinità dei Monti. Home to English poets John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley, the world-famous piazza, located at the foot of the Pincio Hill, has always been considered both a priceless cultural gem as well as popular tourist attraction.

Piazza San Giovanni en Laterano is where the huge beautiful cathedral of Rome is located. Decorated in its center with an Egyptian obelisk in granite from the 14C BC that was at the place of the Grand Circus for a long time and now gives access to the Palace of Laterano.

Piazza Napoléone I, is right inside the Villa Borghese, at the mont of Pincus, offering a plunging view of the city towards the Piazza del Pololo to which it is link by stairs ,giving a wonderful panorama of the city. Of course, Napoléon could not be without one in Rome, he even name his son king of Rome!

Piazza Navona, is a wonderful one that we like a lot.  It is the most elegant and cheerful of all Roman piazzas, and we agree. It was built on the site of Stadium of Domitian in the 1C  A.D.  This is where Roman children received their gifts from the wise men by Jan 6th, and you should not missed seeing the Fountain of The Four Rivers and Church of Saint’Agnese in Agone.

Piazza del Popolo, is a huge square with three roads coming into it , the Via del Corso was our entry point into it always. Once there you will the writing by Bernini  over the northern gate, Porta del Popolo, (the former Porta Flaminio) “Felice faustoque ingressini MDCLV” “For a happy and blessed entrance”; a message left for Queen Christina on her arrival in Rome following her conversion to Roman Catholicism. In the piazza there are the twin Churches of Santa Maria dei Miracoli and Santa Maria di Montesanto, with the  obelisk at center  (known as the Oblisco Flaminio) which is the oldest and second tallest in Rome and the two Valadier fountains, also, see the wonderful Church of Santa Maria del Popolo ,built on the burial site of Emperor Nero.

Piazza Venezia, is very popular with filmgoers, and it has the impressive   The square is of course dominated by the overpowering “Altare della Patria” (Altar of the Fatherland) a monument to honour Victor Emanuel II, unified Italy’s first king.  You will see the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Incorporated in the massive pure white marble structure, which was built between 1885 and 1905, it serves to honour and remember every soldier who lost his life during WWI and who remains unidentified. From here Mussolini used to make his speeches. After much work to preserve the character of this square , Palazzo Venezia,and  Palazzo Bonaparte where Napoleon’s mother, Letizia Ramolino once lived until her death in 1818.

Piazza Santa Maria in Trasteverde, located in the popular district and on the spot of the beautiful church basilica of Santa Maria in Trasteverde; its sparkling 15C fountain, said to be the work of Bramante, 17C Palazzo San Callisto, and glittering gold mosaics of the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trasteverde, while in the evening it is transformed into a lively meeting place for night-lifers, with the restaurants and bars’ tables overrunning the paving and all and sundry soaking up the atmosphere on the steps of the fountain.

Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina, a very nice fashionable area today. As it said churches started from private homes that allowed worshiped on them this is what is thought of the one here ,church of San Lorenzo in Lucina (b. 4-5C  A.D.). It was dedicated to St. Lawrence the Martyr as late as in the 12C, when some relics (including the alleged grid-iron of the saint’s martyrdom) were placed here. The tourist office will ask you ,who is Lucina? Tradition has it she was a rich pious Roman matron, owner of the original home on which the church is built. However given Lucina was an epithet for Juno, the Roman Goddess of heaven and also protector of Roman women, it is feasible that the church may at one time have been a temple, a shrine dedicated to her. Nice story , I buy it lol!

Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, this is a huge square, also known as Piazza Vittorio,in the Esquilino Rione. Surrounded by palazzi with large porticoes of nineteenth-century style, the square was created by Gaetano Koch shortly after the transfer of the capital of Italy from Florence to Rome in 1871. With nearly 10,000 square feet in addition to St. Peter’s square, the largest square in Rome (316 x 174 m). In the middle of the square umbertino style emerged spontaneously since the late 1800s, with large blocks of flats that the recingevano, a large open-air market, especially of food but not only. The food stalls were placed daily, from sunrise to two long sides of the large garden. The market remained in business until the 1990s, much frequented by the Romans for the convenience of prices, and also by tourists hunting for folklore. The Nuovo Mercato Esquilino reflects the multi-ethnic characteristics undertaken in recent decades by the square, and  a strong foreign pressure, both in personal goods. In the middle of the square there is a garden that shows the remains of the nymphaeum of Alexander, and the so-called magic door, the entrance to Villa Palombara, residence of the Alchemist Massimiliano Palombara.

Some webpages to help plan your trip here as usual from me are

The official tourist office of Romehttp://www.turismoroma.it/?lang=en

And, Archeoroma a nice cultural historical sights of Rome:https://www.archeoroma.org/sites/

You can be sure a trip to Rome will make your money’s worth! We will be back, for now hope you enjoy the post as I do.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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January 17, 2021

My first encounter with Brazil!

This is an old update that love to tell you again with updated links and refreshing text! This was my first encounter with Brazil! Thereafter, I have come several times and have written several blog posts on Brazil and you can do search to find a plethora of information on the country in my blog.

Many years ago, in my working life in Florida USA, my boss asked me to do some business traveling. The year was around 1999 or so, do not recall exactly and did not dated my photos. My boss a CFO was a very busy men and we have even become friends over the years and still in touch. He was doing all the traveling and I stayed behind handling the battleship (office) of a multi billion dollars corp traded in the NYSE.  Finally, one day he sat with me and told me I need to travel. I try to evade it claiming have small children and do not wanted to be away so much from home. However, he insisted and touch a nerve on me when he told me that he trusted my decisions and was sure I would do a good job doing these travels. That was it, confidence and self acknowledgement are men’s best friend , could not refuse anymore.

The trip that I needed to do for two weeks! included Porto Alegre, Sao Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil! Now to most this would be like a dream trip, but at that time I was sad to go leaving my little boys ( ages 7 and 5 ,5) behind for the longest period as of that time in 1999. The rest is history, memories, souvenirs , the best experience of my life up to that point, the trip went beyond my expectations ,the job was done well but what I saw and the friends I met have stayed with me even today. Yes, today, still have friends from that trip from Brazil in touch with me in social media!!! And of course, my travels took off !

Previously to this trip i had played football/soccer with the Portuguese community clubs and was aware of the language to a basic level. This trip push me to learned the language which now I do fluently and improved each time with subsequent trips. A Vida É Bela!!!  What can I say more than to tell you again a bit more on these 3 cities.

I  came first to Porto Alegre with a stop at Sao Paulo airport.  Porto Alegre is the capital of the state of Rio Grande do Sul, located between the Rio Guaíba and its many islands. The city is decorated with parks (nine large urban parks) and tree-lined streets, especially in the ancient districts of the Cidade Baixa (lower town). In addition, the city has a biological reserve, around the beach of the district of Latif, on the river, which it is known to have one of the largest urban concentrations of birds of the country. The city has many hills, the Morros, which can reach up to 311 meters in altitude.

The port of Porto Alegre is the southernmost of Brazil. A river system that unites the regional producer center on streams that flow into the Lagoa dos Patos with the largest seaport of Mercosul, the port of Rio Grande, 300 km south, on the South Atlantic Ocean. Its old entrance portico was built in an iron structure decorated with stained glass, commissioned in Paris in 1919. The latter is a tourist attraction point of the city, from where the cruises on the Rio Guaíba leave.

Here my HQ have been the Ceasar Hotel, since then it has gone thru some changes first to Blue Tree Towers Hotels, and lately Hotel Radisson Porto Alegre located at Coronel Lucas de Oliveira, 995 – Bela Vista. they had a japanese resto there very good, then, Becco churrasquerias, and now Don Pallesi Restaurant-Italian style. It has been with mixed emotion seeing all the changes here, I still sentimental for the Ceasar! The new webpage for reference is at https://www.radissonhotels.com/en-us/hotels/radisson-porto-alegre  

In Brazil, it is managed by Atlantica Hotels webpage here: https://www.atlanticahotels.com.br/hotel/radisson-porto-alegre/

The area is known for the gaucho tradition, very horse oriented with great shows for eating and entertainement not to be missed. The Mercado Publico is great now housing many shops of local flavor and tradition centered around the gaucho heritage. Many restos and pubs around Bela Vista and Centro typical of European cities. Galpao Crioulo is an excellent place to see the gauchos in action and eat well very well,its located at Avenida Loureiro da Silva s/n – Centro. I was able to get a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/galpaocrioulochurrascaria/

Porto Alegre friends at gaucho show Churrascaria Galpao Crioulo 1999

For the traditional dish Feijoada, try Panapanà Bistro,Rua Demétrio Ribeiro, 174 – Centro. This has now closed but for the memories a local site that talks of it in Portuguese: http://www.mochilinhagaucha.com.br/2015/06/panapana-bistro-porto-alegre-rs.html

 Another is the great football/soccer team Internacional de Porto Alegre at river banks of  river/Rio Guaíba,in Avenida Padre Cacique, 891, at shopping  Gigante da Beira-Rio. I could not attend a game but did walk by it as consolation. Locally is a giant forever! Webpage:  https://www.internacional.com.br/beira-rio/gigante-para-sempre

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

The official tourist office of Porto Alegre has a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/portoalegre.travel/

The Rio Grande do Sul tourist office on Porto Alegre: https://www.turismo.rs.gov.br/cidade/1/porto-alegre

Many memories here of a family who would read this having white wine in her restaurant that kept her cellars loaded with wine bottles!! right in old city center. Unfortunately, forgot the name of the restaurant and no pictures just my early travel flops…Always nice memories thus, always remember.

And then I went to São Paulo ,the largest city in Brazil and South America. On the plateau of Piratininga at 760 meters above sea level, the city is crossed by two rivers, the Rio Tietê and the Rio Pinheiros which confluent before crossing the whole State of São Paulo and to throw themselves in the Rio Paraná. Founded in 1554 by Portuguese Jesuits, the city developed thanks to the gold of the surrounding mines until the end of the 18C, and then became prosperous thanks to the cultivation of coffee and sugar. In the last century, it has gradually become the economic heart of Brazil, with its business district around Avenue Paulista , hosting the São Paulo Stock Exchange and seats of large Brazilian and international companies. The city is known for its unpredictable climate, its architecture-and in particular its skyscrapers-, its gastronomy, its gigantic traffic jams and the number of helicopters flying over the city (biggest in Latin America).

As mentioned above, this was my first entry point to Brazil, the airport international at Guarulhos, and the country main airport . However, now I came back to see the city! Now traffic here is big and if you are planning to head out by car, I did; better get your bearing on the traffic before leaving home. Not perfect but better than go out blind. Of course, it helps if speaks Portuguese (I do) .CET Webpage http://www.cetsp.com.br/

And of course , more firepower in Portuguese but the AutoBan of Brazil expressways (rodovias), I take from here the Anhanguera (330) and Bandeirantes (348). More on the webpage: http://www.autoban.com.br/

Of course if scary there is the metro or taxi (i have taken the taxi never the metro) ,for info Metro of Sao Paulo webpage, and here they have an English version: http://www.metro.sp.gov.br/en/your-trip/index.aspx

My old time favorite here for stays has been the Maksoud plaza althought lately family feuds has kept renovations from been done until lately, was and is still a grand hotel, done by the architect owner Maksoud tire of staying on other hotels, the one and only Maksoud plaza. . It has wonderful places to eat inside like the Atrium lobby cafe and the Arlanza Grill. Ibirapuera park is nearby for a nice jogging and conferences were held every year for the business traveler in those times . The close by Ave Paulista is the grand avenue for stores ,shopping in the area. Webpage: https://www.maksoud.com.br/en

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For eating out do not missed the Famiglia Mancini, a tradition restaurant not to far from the hotel, and of great renown amongst locals who took me there for dinner ,try the all you can eat choice, awesome, and lately totally renovated. Webpage : http://www.famigliamancini.com.br/?page_id=3418

And for a nice bar go to Bar Original ,there since 1996 near the big park  a taxi ride from hotel. Located at Rua Card Arcoverde, 1265 – Ibirapuera. Webpage: https://www.baroriginal.com.br/

Many things to see here, my favorites are:

The city has many monuments, parks and museums such as the Latin American Memorial, the Ibirapuera Park (big park and many business conventions attended there) and its flag monument, the Municipal Theater b. 1911; The Museum of Art of São Paulo (MASP); The Cathedral of the Sé, the Botanical Garden ; the Trianon park, the Zoological Park , Rua 25 de Março ,the largest outdoors market place of Latin America, with over three thousand stores, the wonderful Sao Bento monastery , the Benedictines arrived in São Paulo in 1598, but only in 1634 was created the Abbey and the Chapel was dedicated to St. Benedict. The site, which hosted Pope Benedict XVI during his visit to Brazil, home to the Basilica of Our Lady of the Assumption and the monastery. Avenida Paulista; the most popular avenue of the city  (yes) concentrates all that is best in São Paulo. It is possible to visit museums and cultural centers, find a park amid great skyscrapers, check book launchings, enjoy the happy hour in one of its many bars, enjoy the evening at nightclubs, watch theatrical performances and movie sessions of the most diverse productions, and go shopping: all in one place!

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

The Metro area of Sao Paulo tourist office in Portuguese: http://www.capital.sp.gov.br/turista

The tourist office of Sao Paulo in English: http://cidadedesaopaulo.com/v2/?lang=en

And again many memories of good cheers and still good friends, who would read this page. Thank you all for reading me! Sao Paulo is big but lucky to have been afterward.

And as it happened, left Brazil by Rio de Janeiro, last on the trip and again many nice memories. Rio de Janeiro is the capital of the State of Rio de Janeiro.Originally designated the Bay of Guanabara, discovered on 1 January 1502 by Gaspar de Lemos and Gonçalo Coelho, captains of the fleet of the Portuguese explorer Pedro Álvares Cabral, discoverer of Brazil. On March 1, 1565, marks the foundation of the city of São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro (“St. Sebastian of the River of January”) in honor of King Sebastian I of Portugal and the celebrated Saint on the day of his birth. San Sebastian who remains the patron of the city is celebrated every year. The capital of the Portuguese kingdom was thus transferred from Lisbon to Rio de Janeiro, which became the only European capital located outside the European continent. It was the capital of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves, following the escape of the Portuguese court during the invasion of the Napoleonic troops (1808-1821), then of the Empire of Brazil (1822-1889), of the República Velha (1889-1930), of the Estado Novo (1937-1945) and the beginning of the Second Republic until 1960.

The Bay of Guanabara is 30 km into the landside. Its entrance is guarded by two forts of the 17C and 19C. It is easy to cross the Bay of Guanabara to get to Niterói or the islands, from where you discover a magnificent view of the city of Rio and the lush mountains that crimp it. The most interesting stage is the island of Paquetá, one of the 84 islands of the bay, where the landscape has not changed since the 19C. In this island, cars are not allowed. The largest of the islands is the island of the governor (Ilha do Governador), where is located the international Airport Antônio Carlos Jobim. From where I left this time and have come in later.

Many memories at Rio, the anecdote is that upon ariving at the airport, my buddy call to verify the hotel reservation, the company had cancelled it because he booked the Palace Copacabana!!! very expensive place; in the haze to change the reservation the company made a booking at another hotel in Copacabana beach, the Othon Palace, but booked it for two nights instead of one, so we took advantage lol!! Located at Avenida Atlantica, just marvelous again , the views,the service the food all is sublime,and the Skylab bar fantastic!

Rio de Janeiro Othon Palace Hotel fr Copacabana beach 1988

Rio de Janeiro view from othon palace hotel window over copacabana beach Brazil 1988

Many things to see here me think , my favorites are:

Pao de açucar (Sugar Loaf) is a rocky peak at the altitude of 395 meters and the so singular form that has always been the symbol of Rio. The famous statue of Christ the Redeemer , a cross-arm, stands on the peak of the Corcovado with a height of 710 meters and can be seen from all areas of Rio. Copacabana beach  ; and its extension to the north, the Leme, with its six kilometers of length that describe a perfect curve is certainly the preferred beach of foreigners. The local friend took me to Niteroi for a nice view of the bay and hang gliding!!!

Along Copacabana beach try the bar Boteco da Garrafa, great pints of beers ,Belgians, Germans you name it ;located at Rua Bolívar, 27, Copacabana.  See it on Restaurant Guru: https://restaurantguru.com/Boteco-da-Garrafa-Rio-de-Janeiro-2

Restaurante Quinta da Boa Vista in Sao Cristovao, inside park same name, open from 1822 when it serves the royal Portuguese family. webpage : http://www.restaurantequintaboavista.com.br/

 Ipanema Beach is located in the most exclusive residential area of the city.  Ipanema Beach, less extensive than that of Copacabana, is the venue for the golden youth of Rio and the homosexual community. Less lively and less noisy than Copacabana, Ipanema is arguably the most romantic of the twenty-five beaches in Rio. The São Conrado beach is located in a cove surrounded by mountains covered with dense vegetation. There rises the Pedra da Gávea, a huge block of granite much more impressive in its shape and size, with its 842 meters, the mountain of Pedra da Gávea overlooks the long beaches of fine sand. You can access it after the Botanical garden . Each of the 141 hectares of the Botanical garden hosts specimens of the Brazilian and World Flora.

The fame jewerlers H Stern store in Niteroi or Copacabana is another great place to shop, webpage :https://www.hstern.net/

The Church of Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro ,white and graceful, the Church of Glória dominates from its height the bay of Guanabara. Built in 1739, this Chapel was intimately linked to the life of the imperial family. In his arms, Joao VI carried his granddaughter, Princess Maria da Glória, to present her at the altar, and Don Pedro I made the same with the future Emperor Pedro II. The decoration is made of carved wood and azulejos (colourful ceramic tiles).  National Historical Museum was only converted into a museum in 1922. Its collections, spread over fourteen halls, retrace the history of Imperial Brazil (19C). It has a library of 70 000 volumes. One of the things to see in this city is the museum Carmen Miranda, the great Brazilian actress of Hollywood fame.

Case apart for this beauty and the errors of incapables governments. National Museum, located in the park of Quinta de Boa Vista, the Sunday promenade of the Cariocas (natives of Rio are call) of the suburbs, this former palace was once the home of Joao VI and the imperial family, until the proclamation of the Republic in 1889. It contains the largest scientific collection of zoology, mineralogy, archaeology, ethnology in Brazil. Unfortunately for lack of funds and proper fire system ,on September 2, 2018, the museum is ravaged by a fire that has burned hundreds of rooms and destroys all historical archives!! This museum webpage:http://www.museunacional.ufrj.br/

The tourist office of Rio de Janeiro: http://visit.rio/en/welcome/

And so famous I give you the Carnival of Rio webpage: http://www.rio-carnival.net/

There you go, a nice 1 2 3 punch in Porto Alegre, Sao Paulo,and Rio de Janeiro to enhance all the beauty of Brazil. Hope you enjoy it as I always will.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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