Trail leads us to the pristine beaches of the West Zone.
To the west of the Tijuca massif -the chain of forested mountains which includes the Tijuca National Park- are some of the most attractive neighbourhoods in Rio. The location away from the city centre makes the area something of a refuge, an opportunity for cariocas and tourists alike to escape the hustle and bustle. With its skyscrapers, condominiums and shopping malls, Barra da Tijuca is not the most representative neighbourhood when it comes to this sense of tranquillity – but it is the gateway to the pristine beaches of the West Zone (Zona Oeste).
Passing through Prainha and Grumari, stop at Mirante de Grumari, that has a privileged view of the beach. After that, go to Barra de Guaratiba, where the rise on the left side of Praia do Canto will take you to the path in the middle of the Atlantic Forest. In the beginning of the hike, it’s possible to see from the top of the staircase the Restinga da Marambaia, which is a military area of restricted access with a small sand strip and exuberant vegetation, which separates the Sepetiba Bay from the Atlantic Ocean. After 40 minutes going up and down, you will get to Perigoso beach. Unfortunately, the path is covered with graffiti writings, but the abundance of the greenery stands out. Before chilling out on the sand and diving to cool down, you will climb the Pedra da Tartaruga, which is by the beach and attracts rappelling enthusiasts all year. From up there it’s possible to see Búzios Beach (or Conchas) on the left side and the wild beaches on the right side. It’s also possible to see beaches that we passed by on the way there, like Prainha and Barra, as well as Pedra da Gávea, if the weather helps. The rock is not that tall, it’s only 98 meters, but the steep climb tires the firsttime adventurers.