Sugarloaf Mountain – Most Prominent Natural Landmark
Brazil is widely famous for its beautiful landscape and lively atmosphere. Sugarloaf Mountain (Portuguese: Pão De Açúcar) is one of them and the world’s most prominent natural landmark peaks overlooking the Rio de Janeiro and the entrance of Guanabara Bay, in southeastern Brazil. The name comes from the unique shape of the mountain’s similarity to a concentrated sugarloaf used in the 19th century, so acquainted in the city during its sugar cane hey-day.
The shape, the conical, granitic peak of 1,296 feet, lies at the end of a short range between Rio de Janeiro and the Atlantic Ocean. A cable car which was first installed in 1912, blossoming the tourist industry to operate from its summit to the adjacent Urca Hill, nearby the foot of which is the site of the Praia Vermelha Campus of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.
The summit of the Sugarloaf can be reached by cable car, from where the sights over the city and the bay are remarkable. Tourists from all over the world are attracted to this striking landmark every year, and it continues to be one of the most visited places in Brazil. Reaching the top of Sugar Loaf is actually about four to five hours round trip.
Rock Climbing at Sugar Loaf Mountain is one of the largest and most admired urban rock climbing endpoints in the world. There are over 270 different routes to explore in the area as you climb high above the Atlantic Ocean and the sprawling Rio de Janeiro.
You can give it a hand yourself, or watch other adventurers conquer the iconic mountain. Sugarloaf neighboring mountains are adding tranquil beauty to the entire peninsula. Morro de Babilonia, or Babylon Mountain, and Morro de Urca, or Urca’s mountain, are two neighboring natural wonders. These two mountains are also accessible to the public and open to rock climbers.
Morro de Urca offers a play area for children and a restaurant that serves up delightful dishes. Guanabara Bay, a historic Guanabara Bay, stretches in front of Sugar Loaf Mountain. Translated as “the bosom of the sea”, it was home to a number of fortifications built by the colonial government in the 16th century. As with Corcovado, climbing the backside of Sugar Loaf is possible for the daring fighter.
It’s not very well recognized because the hiking trail paths near where you catch the cable cars are blocked by a pillar to dispirit the curious hiker. Walk around them and you’re on your way. Be advised. This is a very rugged climb and not for the uninformed, and once you reach the top you won’t able to climb down, and you can’t buy a ticket at the top. Buy your one-way ticket first and take it with you.
Guanabara is made up of more than 130 islands and is surrounded by attractive natural scenery you can grasp from high above as you tour the mountain. Two comfortable cable cars take visitors to the summit, where they can relish fabulous views of Rio de Janeiro from a height of 1,296 feet.
The cable cars themselves are enclosed by glass panels. As you start to ascend to the very top, you can get the wonderful experience of breathtaking views unfolding below you. Because Sugarloaf Mountain sits on a peninsula that stretches into the Atlantic Ocean, it offers a unique scenic combination of a bustling city, a tranquil bay, and a sparkling ocean. You will love reaching the summit, but the journey there will be just as enjoyable.
It is believed, that 600 million years ago Mother Nature’s geologic hand formed a princely natural wonder, which has converted into the most commonly recognized and sought-after tourist attraction in Rio. But it has served its past inhabitants equally well. Navigators for years would spot the imposing figure as the entrance to Guanabara Bay.
The first Portuguese arrives chose the landmark as a settling location for the magnitude of visibility afforded towards the sea and mountains, assuring their continued protection. Riding or walking, Sugar Loaf Mountain is an undying attraction that should be taken advantage of by all who visit Rio. Without any doubt the views are gorgeous, the photo ops endless, and most of all the experience priceless!