Where We Be
Christ the Redeemer -- Rio, Brazil
Rio is home to both Carnival, biggest party in
the world, and Christ the Redeemer, arms
outstretched over the city in a gesture of
forgiveness. There's a certain symmetry in that!

Something about this statue brings a sense of
peace to all who see it. Certainly its placement
atop Corcovado Mountain is a master stroke of
city design. Its high perch affords the ultimate
commanding overlook. Over the years it has
become both a symbol of Christianity and a
cultural icon not only for Rio but all of Brazil.

In fact, if you think about South America as a
whole, what's the first image that comes to
mind? For many it's this statue, Cristo Redentor.
The only other icon we can think of that might
rival it is Machu Picchu in Peru. That's saying
something, when a reinforced concrete and
soapstone statue built in the 1920's can rival an
Incan citadel built in the 1500's!
We got our first glimpse of Cristo from the Mirador Overlook on the way to the top of Corcovado.
At first the statue was hidden in mist, then the mist parted and he appeared. A special moment!
The crowd at the base of the statue
give you a better sense of its size
Nearly 100 feet (30 m) tall, not including the pedestal, it's the 5th largest
statue of Jesus in the world -- and the largest Art Deco statue anywhere
He seems to embrace the whole world in his arms
Did you know there's a small chapel located on the back side
of the statue within the base? It's a reverent, peaceful place.
Being at the peak of Corcovado
gives you one terrific view of the city
At least one acrobat in the crowd has
found a way to see over all the heads!
On the way down we came across a family of
marmosets gathered in a tree just a few feet away
Their favorite food is tree sap, which they reach by gnawing holes in trunks --
but we're guessing they also like potato chips given how close they got
Is this the most famous statue in the world?
We had never noticed the heart symbol on
Cristo's chest until we saw the statue up close
Certainly the poor living in tumbledown favelas visible
from here would hold a special place in Christ's heart
When you visit (and you should visit), you can either take a cog railway or a van to the top. The line
for the cog railway can be very long. We would recommend the van, which costs a little extra but
also stops at the Mirador Overlook on the way up. We paid R$ 25 each for the round-trip van
ride plus R$ 25 each for entry to the site, for a total of R$ 100 ($25 US). Totally worth it!