Statue of Christ (Cristo Redentor) in Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The 30m high statue of Christ on Corcovado is THE main attraction in Rio de Janeiro. From the platform you have an awe-inspiring view of the statue and all of Rio is at your feet.

The world-famous "Cristo Redentor" (Christ the Redeemer) on Corcovado north of the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro is the seventh largest statue of Christ in the world. The striking figure amidst the lush green vegetation of the Tijuca National Park is one of our top 10 sights in Rio de Janeiro.

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PICTURES: Statue of Christ in Rio de Janeiro

Photo gallery: Statue of Christ (Cristo Redentor) in Rio de Janeiro

Origin of the statue of Christ in Rio

Corcovado Hill, site of Rio de Janeiro's world-famous statue of Christ, lies in the lush vegetation of Tijuca National Park, Brazil - © boscorelli / Shutterstock
© boscorelli / Shutterstock

The statue was designed by Heitor Silva Costa and the French sculptor Paul Ladowski immortalised it in stone within 5 years. In 1931, the world's largest Art Deco statue was completed. The open arms of the Cristo Redentor signal that the statue protects the city of Rio lying at its feet.

Dimensions of the Cristo Redentor

The Cristo Redentor statue is 30m high, the hand span is also just under 30m, the base is just under 10m high, Rio, Brazil - © Luiz Rocha / Shutterstock
© Luiz Rocha / Shutterstock

The impressive statue is 30 metres high, the enormous hand span is also almost 30m. The pedestal on which the Cristo Redentor stands guard is almost 10m high. The statue and its pedestal weigh a total of an unimaginable 1,145 tonnes!

With these fulminant dimensions and its breathtaking aura, the statue in the forests of the Tijuca National Park has managed to be chosen as one of the "New 7 Wonders of the World".

The world's largest statues of Christ: "competitors" of the Cristo Redentor

Aerial view of the world-famous statue Cristo Redentor in Rio de Janeiro; Copacabana, Brazil, in the background - © Mark Schwettmann / Shutterstock
© Mark Schwettmann / Shutterstock

In view of this enormous size, it is hard to imagine that there are six larger statues of Christ left in the world:

  • The largest statue of Christ in the world was erected in Poland in Świebodzin. The statue of Christ there, called "Chrystus Król", is 36m high.
  • The second largest statue, "Cristo de la Concordia", is located in Bolivia in the city of Cochabamba.
  • Third place goes to the "Cristo Resucitado" in Mexico.
  • In fourth place among the world's largest statues of Christ is the Christ of Vũng Tàu in Vietnam.
  • This is followed by the "Sacred Heart of Jesus Shrine" in the Philippines and the "Kristus kase Berkat" in Indonesia even before the Cristo Redentor in Rio.

Visit to the Cristo Redentor

A cogwheel railway takes visitors up to the platform 710m above sea level, where the statue of Christ was built. After a 20-minute ride, a lift takes you to the platform. From there, it's a walk up the stairs to the base where the statue is anchored.

In good weather, an average of 6,000 people visit the statue of Christ every day. The sight of this impressive colossus and the panorama it offers remain forever in the memory of every visitor.

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Tip: Before you buy a ticket at the cog railway station, take a look at the flat screen. When it's foggy, neither the statue nor the incredible panorama is visible from the platform! If necessary, try again on another day - it's worth it!

Tijuca National Park

The Tijuca National Park covers an area of almost 40 square kilometres across the hills around Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - © Dmitry V. Petrenko / Shutterstock
© Dmitry V. Petrenko / Shutterstock

The famous statue of Christ is surrounded by the Tijuca National Park. This is the largest national park in the world whose lush green hills lie in the middle of a city. Its almost 40 square kilometres of primeval forest still belong to the urban area of the Brazilian metropolis and are among the most popular sights on day trips from Rio de Janeiro.

PICTURES: Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro

Photo gallery: Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro

Origin of the Tijuca National Park

View from Tijuca Mirim Peak over the lush green jungle of Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - © vitormarigo / Shutterstock
© vitormarigo / Shutterstock

The Tijuca National Park was founded on 7 June 1961 after the area behind the Rio Botanical Garden had been deliberately reforested with the original primeval forest since the 18th century. Before that, nature had had to make way for coffee cultivation.

In addition to restoring the vegetation, the Brazilian emperor of the time, Dom Pedro II, also had paths built that led to three viewing platforms and, in addition, secured Rio's drinking water supply with the park.

Sights in the Tijuca National Park

The Cristo Redentor above the cloudy city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil - © marchello74 / Shutterstock
© marchello74 / Shutterstock

The protected area covers an area of almost 40 square kilometres over the hills around Rio de Janeiro. One of these hills is Corcovado ("the hunchback"). This is where it stands, the world-famous statue of Christ. The landmark of Rio and Brazil should not be missed on any visit to the Tijuca National Park and offers a sensational view over the bay of Rio with the equally famous Copacabana.

Besides Corcovado, it is also worth climbing the two peaks Pedra da Gávea and the 1,022m Pico da Tijuca. Some of the well-maintained and signposted paths and roads still lead to viewing platforms and there are also some waterfalls to discover amidst the lush vegetation.

The 40m high Cascatinha do Tauney is the highest waterfall in Rio and a view from the Chinese View is not to be missed. A visitor centre provides information about all the sights in the Tijuca National Park.

Brazilian Jungle in Rio

Tijuca National Park expands into the largest inner-city rainforest in the world on the hills surrounding Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - © Vitoriano Junior / Shutterstock
© Vitoriano Junior / Shutterstock

Besides the diverse Mata Atlântica, the original Brazilian rainforest, artificially planted mango, coffee and breadfruit trees also grow in the Tijuca National Park. In some places, the Atlantic jungle grows even denser than the rainforest in the Amazon region.

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Amidst the approximately 3,000 plant species, a variety of animals also feel at home. In addition to insects, snakes, lizards and several hundred bird species, larger animals such as capuchin monkeys, forest dogs, coatis and armadillos also live in the park. For amateur ornithologists, the Tijuca National Park is a paradise, but visitors rarely see the mammals.

Related links:

Official website of the Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro
Website of the rack railway operator to Cristo Redentor

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