Updated on July 23, 2013 Update:
Ticket purchase rules for the Corcovado changed on May 24, when a Rio de Janeiro judge ruled as arbitrary the mayor's decree from a couple of days before stopping the sale of tickets at the cogwheel train station.
Cogwheel train tickets can, as of this update, be purchased directly at the cogwheel station's ticket booth; at official kiosks at Largo do Machado, in the nearby Laranjeiras district; or at a similar kiosk in Candelária, in central Rio. The same points of sale do offer an admission/van transportation combo.
The transportation-admission combo costs R$45. Only vans certified by the city's administration can go to the top of Corcovado. Purchase the van/ticket combo online at Paineiras-Corcovado.com.br.
During World Youth Day (July 23-28, 2013), the attraction will be open 24 hours a day. A night visit test took place during the Corpus Christi holiday in late May. Dress warmly for nighttime visits, when the temperature could drop to about low 50s Fahrenheit.
A visit to the Statue of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado Mountain is one of the best experiences a tourist in Rio de Janeiro can wish for. The view of Rio from the top of Corcovado and the statue itself are well worth the minor inconvenience of waiting in line for the cogwheel train during the high season.
The best up-close views of the Statue of Christ the Redeemer, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, can elude the visitor on a short stay. The rainforest-covered mountain, which stands at a height of about 2,329 feet, and the 124-foot tall statue are sometimes enveloped by clouds which impair the view of the monument and the city. If you want to get the most out of your visit, pass up the beach on the very first sunny opportunity and join the crowd.
Rio attractions which can be seen from Corcovado include: Sugarloaf Mountain, Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas, Botafogo, Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. Beyond the shimmering Guanabara Bay, visitors can see other mountains in Rio de Janeiro State.
Visits to the Corcovado and the Statue of Christ the Redeemer help make the Tijuca Forest National Park one of the most popular in Brazil. According to ICM Bio, the institute which oversees Brazil's national parks, the Tijuca National Park and Iguaçu National Park account for 90% of the 3,5 million people who visit Brazil's national parks annually.
The Statue of Christ the Redeemer
Long before being voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, the Statue of Christ the Redeemer atop the Corcovado was considered a major engineering feat. The statue opened on Oct.12, 1931 is in its best shape in years after a restoration concluded in 2010 - which included the clean-up of graffiti done by vandals using the restoration scaffolding.
The historic cogwheel train, opened in 1884 by Emperor Pedro II, is running as efficiently as ever, having been repaired after the Corcovado was ravaged by rains early in 2010. The steep ride through the Tijuca Forest - with the occasional treat of samba groups playing on the cars - is a much better alternative for reaching the top of the mountain than taxis. Even though getting around Rio by taxi is usually safe, the Corcovado is one of the places in Rio where international tourists are more subject to rip-off attempts.
After the cogwheel ride, visitors can reach the Statue of Christ the Redeemer on three panoramic elevators (for 14 people each) and escalators which can transport up to 9,000 people per hour.
The cogwheel station, the train and the Corcovado are wheelchair-accessible.
Rua Cosme Velho 513
Rio de Janeiro - RJ
Tickets: 36 reais round trip. Free for children 5 and younger. One-way cogwheel train ride lasts about 20 minutes. Trains depart every 30 minutes.