Monday, August 4, 2014


This is one of the days that you realize that 24 hours is not suficient...being with Holly and Haylee was a blessing prestige...good humour, intelligence, loud laughs and high energy every single second. They came highly recommended by the Romeros (wonderful Seattle friends) so when I have such a task I must do it no matter what...and I did...I try to show to the girls my favorite spots of Rio. There are many favorite spots so I have to choose my top best, so our one day adventure in Rio just started. I really wish more girls you got to promise me that we will meet several times in Brazil and for sure when I finally get to the States we will write the book RAFA ADVENTURES IN UNCLE SAM'S LAND....

When I say favorite places...Niteroi is the top first in my we went directly to Niteroi, beautiful city in the other side of Guanabara Bay...lovely mountainous coast and Holly is now living in Brasilia, so I had to show her that Oscar Niemeyer liked the beach and specially Niteroi and here he built a wonderful building...the MAC - MUSEU DE ARTES CONTEMPORANEAS. The project respects the surroundings and the views from there are just breathtaking and this picture that you are seeing right now was to prove that in a contemporary art museum we can make CONTEMPORARY you can consider myself a "work of art"....

A visit to Niteroi is not perfect if you do not go to my super, hyper, ultra favorite spot in the city...the scenic Parque da Cidade on Viração is our paragliding school where my friends there is like family...there is the place where I throw myself to the endless sky and I find my moments of peace...This is how you feel when you jump from the cliff and explore the clouds with the paraglider...we have amazing instructors there that can give you this priceless emotion. From this viewpoint you can see all over Rio in front of you, it is always a wonderful moment for all the guests that visit this is considered "Rafa Secret"

And just to make this visit to Niteroi complete we went to the LA CREME DE LA CREME of our ocean beaches in this northern side of Rio State...we got to Itacoatiara. One of the less know wonderful beaches of Rio, so if you are a beach person, we should explore this side of Niteroi that holds many different surprises...

I am a black and white photo fan so I made this picture with the girls and the incredible views of Itacoatiara.

Holly was so happy to be in Santa Tereza (maybe not the Lobster) when we had lunch in the traditional sea food restaurant Sobrenatural, indeed one of the main names in the local Gastronomy, Santa Tereza, no doubt has the best restaurants in Rio. Sobrenatural came highly recommended and I could not say no to my princesses; and for the record, I love that restaurant too...that was a LOBSTER massacre!!! :))))

And of course when you are in Santa Tereza we have fun with the street art in the neighborhood. Santa Tereza is a charming place in Rio, the first portuguese settlement and so close to the famous steps of Selaron.

Since the artist's death this unique place has been abandoned, the city ignores the place which is one of the amazing attractions of Rio de Janeiro, but I keep taking my guests to see the creation of a very good friend of mine, this painter and sculptor Jorge Selaron which memory should never be forgotten.

Muito Obrigado Girls, for your delightful company, thanks to open your heart for a everlasting friendship, I am honored to have met you!!!

Tell to everyone that one day with Rafa can be the high light of any trip to Rio de Janeiro, I will always be here to show you Rio with my soul.


Rafael Torres Lopes
Tour Guide and Travel Planner

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