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Masjid Tijuca and Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro

24 April 2015

I awoke late and only had breakfast at 0940 am.

I then went back to my room, rested and did more research on Chile, my next destination (which I had not booked flights to yet, or planned to visit until yesterday). At 11 am I shower and then left for the mosque in Tijuca at 1210 pm. The taxi from Copacabana to Masjid Tijuca cost 35 reals. The taxi driver was a little confused about where to go when I told him to go to the “Mesquita” (mosque) in Tijuca. There is also a street named “Rua Barão de Mesquita” in Tijuca but this is not where the mosque is. The address of the mosque is Rua Gonzaga Bastos 77. You’ll pass the Maracana stadium on the way to the mosque.

Maracana stadium rio brazil

I arrived at Masjid Tijuca at 1233 pm, just as a sister was taking shahadah (i.e. accepting Islam).

Masjid Tijuca taxi outsideIt is an honour to be present at such an occasion, The sister was in the ladies section behind a panel that separates the men from the women in the mosque so none of the men could see her.

We could just listen to what she was reciting.

prayers Masjid Tijuca rio

Immediately after this the azaan, lecture (in Portuguese) and khutba took place. Salaah was at 1310.

Masjid Tijuca brazil rio

I left the mosque at 1320. I took a walk around the mosque but did not find any halal restaurants.

Masjid Tijuca souvenir rio
I then decided to walk to Maracana stadium which was 2 km away. The sun was blazing hot that day so I tried to keep to the shaded areas where possible. Outside Maracana stadium I took a few photos.

rio stadium brazil

I then took a taxi to Copacabana beach for approximately 30 reals. At the hostel I changed into my swimming costume and headed for Copacabana beach.

copacabana beach afternoon rio

zaid copacabana beach

The waves were pretty rough. Admittedly I wasn’t having a good time in the water. It seemed like others were also not enjoying it that much. When the waves in what was still shallow waters hit you, you fall. It’s that powerful. I hanged around for a while before heading back to shower and change.

After sunset I went looking for dinner in Copacabana. I visited a restaurant that serves pizza.

pizzeria bakery rio brazil

The place had a English menu and I told the chef to make me a Pizza Champignon (Mushroom). I re-iterated that I want vegetarian before returning to my table. The pizza was served within 10 minutes. I ate a few slices before to my horror discovering what was possibly bacon under the cheese in the centre of the pizza. I hate it when they do that. The thing is, in Brazil bacon seems to be treated like a vegetable. They sprinkle bits of it in rice as well. I was quite put off. Fact: Eating Halal or Vegetarian in Brazil is hard, even if you take precautions.

After that incident I headed to Caffeina, a cool coffee shop with walls and chairs that are styled similar to a castle. I had a good cup of coffee and a slice of orange cheesecake.

cafeina coffee bakery rio

cappucino tart caffeina brzil

That night I slept late after finally booking my flight and accommodation in Santiago for the next day.

About Zaid

Zaid is an intrepid traveler from South Africa that has traveled to all 7 continents. He loves to explore new destinations, experience new activities and go off the beaten path.
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