Rio de Janeiro is the “Cidade Maravilhosa” that greets everyone with friendly faces and open arms. Its magic begins with its natural beauty, which has amazed travelers since the first explorers landed in the sixteenth century and has inspired countless artists, designers, architects, poets, and musicians for more than 450 years. The massive statue of Christ the Redeemer on top of Corcovado mountain watches over the sea and the mountains, the concrete jungle and the world’s largest urban forest, the simple colonial facades of churches concealing rich baroque interiors, and the scantily clad bodies that parade the beaches, where all classes gather in the democracy of bikinis and sungas. But the attraction of this unique place is even deeper; it lives in the hearts of its citizens, the cariocas, who, no matter where they go, radiate the sun they so revere. Generous, creative, open-minded, and in constant motion, they are a people of all colors and creeds, which, despite the difficulties of social and class divisions, never loses its morale, its smiles, and its faith in the victory over the daily battles of the human condition. Epicenter of the colorful explosion of joy, feathers, and sequins that is Carnaval, Rio is a marvelous gateway to discover the wonders of Brazil. Filled with vibrant imagery celebrating this dynamic city, In the Spirit of Rio includes a guide to the best hotels, restaurants, art galleries, shopping, and sightseeing attractions.