Clearly I couldn’t head to Rio without going to Ipanema beach – a long sandy beach running alongside the coast. Apparantly the name actually means “dangerous waters” – as there are huge waves and the sea has a very strong pull even if you are just paddling. There are loads of locals selling traditionally skimpy thong bikinis or ones that barely cover a bum cheek, sarongs, beers, ice creams and of course caipirinhas (the best cocktail ever)! All the beaches along Rio have amazing views of mountains and the water is lovely and warm…a little too warm when I’m sweating in the 36 degree heat!
The weather for the first week of my stay has generally been sunny in the mornings, cloudy in the afternoons (welcome relief from the sweltering sun) with a mid afternoon and an evening rain shower…I had been cursing this because it made everything less photogenic..but I’m regretting my moans now as it seems to be sun sun sun and I’m having to skip between shaded areas to stop myself overheating!
What is most peculiar about the beach is that it is marked by postos (numbered posts) that create areas for specific groups of people. (Of course you can sit anywhere but I guess like minded people like to congregate together). For example in posto 10 is where everywhere plays soccer and volleyball, there is a gay and lesbian posto, “rich” person posto with recliners and umbrellas, family postas etc…we didn’t realise this until after we had been to the beach…and after revisiting it it is really obvious that people do actually tend to follow these demarcations….of course I hung out in posto nine – (young and trendy)!