Rio de Janeiro is a city which is strongly associated with Carnival. Indeed, asked to think of Rio de Janeiro, most people will say Carnival as the thing that they think of first. Yet it has much more to offer than just Carnival and Samba, fantastic though these are. The Carnival takes place just before Lent, in February or March, depending on when Easter falls. However, Rio has something to offer whenever you visit and is just such a vibrant, exciting place to visit; you really will carry it in your heart forever. It is a city of just over 6 million people and so is a busy, happening place. It attracts a great number of tourists all year round, although obviously even more at Carnival time. The climate is quite tropical with the average lowest temperature being 20 celsius, with over 40 celsius, regularly recorded during the summer months. However, if you are in the main tourist areas, which are close to the beach, you will find that the sea breezes tend to help keep the temperature bearable.
One of the things to bear in mind about Rio is that the crime rate is higher than you would like. So you need to take care when out and about, check that your wallet is safe, avoid some of the poorer areas and don't stray off the main streets. Basic safety precautions should ensure that you are left without the hassle of any crime and are thus free to enjoy the holiday of a lifetime! Rio really does have so much to offer that it is difficult to highlight only a few attractions. With its backdrop of mountains and forests, with its front facing the Atlantic, even its setting is absolutely beautiful. Music seems to beat through the heart of all the people here and you will find sensual samba danced throughout the city. The nightlife is also very energetic and exciting, with music, dance and alcohol giving a real intensity to even just eating out! The Copacabana area is one of the most famous and the music just seems to enter your bones here. You should also climb the Corcovado Mountain by the little train which heaves its way up the hill, through the quite dense rainforest up to the top of the mountain to give some awesome views of the city. The beaches are also great and very relaxing, with beaches of all types, including nudist beaches available. However, one thing which you absolutely must do when in Rio is take a samba class, to enjoy and learn more about the complexity of this sensual and exotic dance. It really is great fun, although be warned, samba can be addictive so once it takes hold on your soul you will just want to dance samba again and again. So for the trip of a lifetime, with some memories which will live in your heart forever, take a trip to Rio and just awaken your soul and spirit!
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