Thursday, December 27, 2012

Some notes about cycling and Rio. -Rio has a really great cycling corridor along the coast, from above Flamengo--Aterro do Flamengo, which is an excellent park for picnics, sports, and hanging out on the beach of the Bay--through Botafogo beach, past Urca, through the tunnel to Copacabana, over to Ipanema... Then you have to go by road to get to the next section--over the hill past Vidigal, and down the hill to São Conrado beach. And then there are a pair of tunnels, passable but unpleasant, to get to Barra da Tijuca beach. Here, the bike path continues for kilometers and kilometers, along long stretches of beach, and then past marshes, and back to beach, past a campground, to Recreio and beyond. The Zona Sul--the area around Copacabana and Ipanema--has some cycle paths crisscrossing the urban area. The rest of the vastness of Rio I think has limited bicycle-specific infrastructure. But along the beach, it is quite nice. On Sundays, Rio closes off the boulevard next to beach to car traffic (until 6pm, I think). Then, people fill the street walking, skateboarding, rollerblading, cycling, and any number of creative, human-powered wheeled transport--for exercise, culture, socializing, people- and scenery-watching. I want to find or build a tall bike, and bring it to Ipanema and Copacabana on Sundays. It will certainly be an eye-opener and mind-opener, and I can teach people to ride it. It will be highly interactive, and extremely visible. I am sure it will become famous, and probably even make the news. If you happen to know places in Rio that have or make tall bikes, weld and construct alternative bikes, please let me know!

1 comment:

neil.nachum said...

I congratulate you for bicycling through Brazil. Today Al jazeera had a program Pedal Power in Rio (by Lucia Newman) , but I can't find the link yet. I found you by looking to the link. I am an American who spent 13 months in Brazil. I only got to know the capital, Brasilia on bike. Until about 35 years old I was a passionate bicyclist. I'm 57 and await NYC's public bike program to help me return to the bike. If you are looking for friends in Brazil consider the language Esperanto. There are clubs in two dozen cities and activists in about a hundred cities. They tend to be progressive and will support you...if you learn the easy neutral language.