Month: June 2016

Botanical Gardens Cropped

More About Rio

Botanical Gardens w Birds MediumI thought all of South America spoke Spanish, but it turns out they speak Portuguese in Brazil! Michael and I learned this on our trip to Rio de Janeiro. Rio de Janeiro means “River of January” in Portuguese, because the first explorers came in January and thought it was a river mouth.

Rio is such a beautiful place, and there’s so much nature in the city. They have beaches and mountains, and tons of wildlife. One of my favorite places was the Botanical Gardens. We saw all kinds of beautiful flowers, turtles, monkeys, and the gorgeous colorful birds that the locals call Araras.

Martial Art

Awesome Music in Rio de Janeiro

Molly and Michael watch capoeira with their friend Livia in Rio de Janeiro.

Molly and Michael watch capoeira with their friend Livia in Rio de Janeiro.

Michael and I just got back from a beautiful city called Rio de Janiero. It’s a gorgeous oceanside city in Brazil, in South America — and the home of the 2016 Summer Olympics! Our favorite part of Rio was the music. They have instruments there we’ve never seen before. There was one that looked like a fishing rod to us. It’s called a berimbau. It has a single string and you play it by hitting the string with a bow. It sounds like a bass guitar, but you also use a shaker with it called a caxixi. ‘Berimbau’ is also the title of an old, well-known song.

There was also a pandeiro. It looks like a tambourine, but it’s different. The jingles have a different noise and the drum itself is used more often than with a tambourine. We also saw a large drum, called an atabaque. It is often made with special wood from a jacaranda tree.

One way they use all these special instruments is to play music along with a form of dance and a martial art called capoeira. You can see videos online – it is amazing!

Rio was an awesome city. There’s so much to explore everywhere we go!