Favela da Rocinha: The Other Side of Rio
Rio is one of the most beautiful places on the planet, but you cannot go and take in the sites and ignore the surrounding favelas. The Favelas, or slums, circle the main parts of the city, crawl up the green mountains, and are home to over a million locals. Several outfits run tours into Rocinha, some that actually fund after school programs for favela kids. Your guide will teach you about the area's history and give an accurate, inside account of what life is really like in these fascinating communities. (And yes, it's perfectly safe.)
By Kristin Rust, AFAR Local Expert
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