Voted as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in the year 2007, Christ the Redeemer has become iconic of Rio de Janiero and Brazil. A symbol of Brazilian Christianity, the statue of Jesus Christ stands at an impressive height of 98 feet and more than 2,326 feet above sea level. Located at the peak of the Corcovado mountain in the Tijuca Forest National Park overlooking the city, Christ the Redeemer was considered the largest Art Deco statue in the world from the year 1931 until 2010. Also known as Cristo Redentor in Portugese, it attracts over two million eager visitors each year.
The idea of creating such a statue was first suggested in the mid-1850s, when Catholic priest Pedro Maria Boss requested financing to build a large religious monument from Princess Isabel, who rejected the proposal. The second proposal was made in 1920 by the Catholic Circle of Rio, which petitioned for support to build a landmark statue. The design was chosen from several ideas and construction began in the 1920s. While local engineer Heitor da Silva Costa designed the statue; it was sculpted by Polish-French sculptor Paul Landowski. The face of the statue was created by Romanian sculptor Gheorghe Leonida. Reinforced concrete and soapstone were used to construct the structure, which was created in pieces and carried to the mountain top to be erected. In October 2006, on the statue’s 75th anniversary, a chapel was consecrated under the statue.
When To Visit
To enjoy the magnificent glory of Christ the Redeemer, the best time to visit Rio is between December and March when the weather is warm and sufficiently sunny. Arrive in February or early March to experience Carnival. However, if you would prefer more moderate conditions, plan a visit during the spring months, which are September and October.
How To Reach
As far as accessing Christ the Redeemer is concerned, tourists need to reach Rio de Janiero in Brazil, which is well connected via air to all major cities of the world. With so many tourists visiting the statue daily, there are numerous ways for getting there. Visitors can reach the statue in different ways, popular among them being by tram, by car, or by foot.
- Taxis: Taxis to Christ the Redeemer can be taken up the mountain and you can negotiate with the taxi driver to wait while for you while you explore the statue, at a pre-arranged fixed rate.
- Hiking: For the energetic and adventurous ones, there are several options of hiking trails that go through Tijuca National Park and lead up to the statue. The main trail begins in ParqueLage in the Botanical Gardens and continues through the national park for two hours, providing incredible scenery throughout the route.
- Tram: The cog train to Christ the Redeemer departs from Corcovado Station and travels along a route that is older than the statue itself! It can carry up to 173 people at a time to the top of Corcovado Mountain through the Tijuca National Park. The journey lasts approximately twenty minutes and the tickets for the cog train currently cost R$46.00, which also includes a round trip and admission to Christ the Redeemer.
To enjoy a splendid trip with interesting history details, do plan a trip to Rio de Janeiro and visit Christ The Redeemer.