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“Great tour for first timers”
Review of Be a Local Tours

Be a Local Tours
Ranked #15 of 481 Tours in Rio de Janeiro
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: We provide City Tours, Favela Tours, Football/Soccer Games, Favela Funk Parties, walking tours and transfers. Since 2003 show the real Rio de Janeiro.
Dundee, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Great tour for first timers”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

We heard about the trip via a hostel notice board, and thought it would be perfect as we only had 3 days in Rio. The pick-up was tedious, as mentioned by others, but mainly because we were the first to be collected, and I was anxious that we weren't getting value for money at that point. The only solution is for everyone to go to a central place, though, which would be less convenient for travellers. Yes, it took us a while in traffic to get to the first stop, Christ the Redeeemer, but that's how it goes! Dan, our guide, was great, gave us lots of information, and clearly knew what he was doing. At every stop he told us information and was open to questions which he tried to answer. The trip to the top of Sugar Loaf was spectacular at sunset, and after as we came down the mountain with the lights of Rio. The previous reviewer complained about it being cold; I feel it's up to the traveller to decide what is appropriate for the conditions. Dan didn't tell us to put on sun cream, either!! We really enjoyed the whole experience, except the pick-up. Well done Dan!

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Deanfield
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeaLocal021, Manager at Be a Local Tours, responded to this review, October 18, 2013
Thanks for your review.
We know that sometimes traffic get´s crazy in Rio and providing pick ups at most of the hotels/hostels, can cause some delay to reach the attractions. We are working hard to make changes and make it faster and better.
Kind regards,
marcio
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
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English first
San Juan Metro Region, Puerto Rico
Level 6 Contributor
85 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
“A total waste of money”
Reviewed September 30, 2013

I was picked up at hotel at 2pm. You have to pay cash or you cannot step in the little bus. "No ticket no laundry."They arrived at the Christ in the city tour at 4pm. The Christ was full of clouds, you couldn't see anything, no city view only clouds. It was cold, the tour guide Fernanda had a coat, she knew it was this way, but said nothing to the participants. The Christ is in the Tijuca Rain Forest. Tour guide only said, "there is the cathedral you have 15 minutes", Ok hello, tell us something about it, year built who designed, but said nothing. It was the same in the Lapa stairs, "there are the stairs you have 10 minutes". They picked participants late, they took a traffic jam to the Christ to see clouds!!!!!!!. I returned the next day by public bus. Paid $5.00 USD round trip and enjoyed the Christ how I wanted. Took me $75.00 for nothing. They took me also to the Sugar Loaf at 7pm, What I was going to see by night? At this moment I was so upset that I took a taxi and returned to my hotel. I did not finish this "tour". I went early next morning by public bus 512 to URCA and I enjoyed it BY DAY!. And I returned by 511 toward Copacabana. This "tour guide" had the guts of asking for tips in advance, "I love tips, they are welcomed" for what? For taking us to a Christ full of clouds, and go late to Sugarloaf to see lights? Are you serious?

The bottom line is, go by yourself study the maps at G o o gle, study the routes from and to by public transportation is very easy. Do not take the city tour they only want your money. They take about two hours picking up other people wasting YOUR TIME. Public transportation is easy and buses are NEW with AC. Just say The Christ or El Cristo very loud to the driver, they will tell you when is time to step out the bus. The same applies to Sugarloaf. But always be early, tourists arrives in Tours by the dozens after 930am. Be early and the Christ is yours, the first train to the Christ departs at 830 am. Bus to Christ is 583 returning is 584, $2.75 Reals each way, about $1.75 USD. A real deal. Do not take this tour.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Galant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeaLocal021, Manager at Be a Local Tours, responded to this review, October 2, 2013
Thanks for your comment, we are working hard to improve our business. Just to clarify some points. Here in Rio must of the attractions are natural one´s like Sugar Loaf, Christ, beaches and forest, so the weather is a big deal when you try to visit it.
We are running tours everyday and people know in advance how the weather will be by the day of the tour and if the weather is bad or cloudy, how can we manage that?
About your comments of lack of information at Lapa Steps and Cathedral, we will call the guide Fernanda to come back for trainning and pass all the information about the sites that we visit.
Wish you all the best, hoping to have you on board next time in Rio.
Marcio
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Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Fantastic favela tour”
Reviewed September 23, 2013

The guide was really good, clearly well-known in Rocinha, showed respect for the locals and provided insight and interesting information. Couldn't have wished for a better tour.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank mabildstrom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeaLocal021, Owner at Be a Local Tours, responded to this review, January 2, 2014
Thanks for your comment, it was a pleasure to have in on board.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hampshire, uk
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Good tour, but tiring pick up”
Reviewed September 23, 2013

We did two tours with 'be a local'. The first was a day tour of the city featuring sugar loaf, Christ the redeemer and a few other sites. While the guide got us there, it took 3 hours from the pick up at our hotel to getting to the first site. My advice would be to do this tour yourself using public transport, it's got to be far less frustrating that spending my holiday driving around from hotel to hotel. However, we also did the favela tour, which was really interesting and well worth doing. We spent about 2 hours walking through the favela, meeting some locals, visiting a shop and an artists studio. The guide explained all about life in the favela, and this trio more than made up for the disappointing city tour.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank markusl132
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeaLocal021, Owner at Be a Local Tours, responded to this review, January 2, 2014
Thanks for your comment, it was a pleasure to have in on board. We are working on the pick up proccess, to give a best service for our clients.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Silver Spring, Maryland
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Very good learning experience from the Favela Tour”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

The tour to the largest favela in Rio de Janeiro, Rochina, guided by Fernando from "Be a Local" was one of the highlights of my trip to Brazil. Rochina is located on a steep hill between Leblon and Barra, and provides a very different view of Rio de Janeiro from what other more well-known neighborhoods, such as Copacabana and Ipanema, make us imagine. Large urban cities inevitably attract the poor because of certain opportunities that are not available in rural areas. Despite a simple image of "slum", the tour provides more complex physical, social, and economic conditions that this favela has been going through in recent years. Our guide, Fernando, was fluent in English and Spanish, as well as Portuguese, and very clear on his description and explanation of the place and the life of people there. He was also very considerate for the needs of all tour participants. The tour was a very good learning experience for me, who is a scholar in urban studies and planning. Highly recommended.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Hiro_Ise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeaLocal021, Owner at Be a Local Tours, responded to this review, January 2, 2014
Thanks for your comment, it was a pleasure to have in on board.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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