Sites of Rio de Janeiro: Pão de Açúcar


That’s Sugarloaf as seen from Corcovado

One of the most famous and recognized views in the world is from Pão de Açúcar also known as Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro.

Sugarloaf Mountain sits at the edge of Rio right off a harbor and after a short trip you can be to the top to take in the views. Of course, I was a tourist and I had to do this!


You can climb to the top or just take the trams. The first tram takes you to Morro da Urca, (220 meters high) while the second car ascends to Pão de Açúcar (396 metres or 1,299 ft). I was on a tour and I was being lazy so I headed up by tram. I am sure you earn the view if you actually climb to the top but the views from the cable car were awesome just the same.


From the top, I was rewarded (even though I didn’t work for it) with sweeping views over the harbor, glimpses of the famous Rio beaches, and even a view of Cristo Redentor on the top of Corcovado.

Seriously, the view is stunning, spectacular, awe-inspiring and will induce ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’. At least it did from me.


Most tour groups take you up there near sunset so you can get spectacular views and colored skies. Our tour group did the same. While there were clouds hovering behind Cristo Redentor, the sunset was still pretty awesome and the clouds led to some interesting photos.




Even cooler than the sunset was seeing the lights begin to turn on as darkness fell over Rio including the lights on Cristo. It is amazing to see Christ illuminated and watching over the city of Rio under the night skies. I was almost left by tour group because I kept stopping to take photos of the glowing Christ over darkened Rio.

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