Rio de Janeiro is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve seen, and the trip from Sao Paulo to Rio on a clear, cloudless day is without a doubt my most beautiful flight. In Rio, you get dramatic mountains, perfect beaches, the ocean and an urban environment all in one glance. In every glance, actually. And often enough Jesus.
Rio is also the only city I visited where natives, when you tell them you’re staying in one of two of the most touristy areas possible, reply: “oh, good” and look relieved. No one has suggested that I venture out to find the “real” or “authentic” Rio. When I checked in at the hotel, I received information about when breakfast was served, the password for wi-fi and advice on how to avoid getting robbed.
It’s also over a hundred days since Marielle Franco was killed in an execution-style murder, and no suspected has yet been arrested.