"Make sure that you don't go out alone or end up in a favela when you get to Rio. It's very dangerous." Everybody we spoke to prior to our trip said this exact same thing to us. But when a guy told us about a tour that could take us to see the real Rio, we were intrigued. He was offering a tour to the infamously dangerous favelas, where poverty and violent crime reign. As soon as we got to the favela people started staring at us incredulously. They weren't hostile stares as such, more like are-these-tourists-on-a-suicide-mission? stares. Then our guide took us to a place that apparently had the best view in Rio, but we had to promise not to take any photos of people. So we walked into a rather luxurious house and up a staircase to a roof terrace where the view really was awesome. I leaned over the banister to take some photos and saw some smiling people waving at me - which was nice but for the fact they were all armed with various kinds of weapons, from AK-47s upwards! I waved back nervously. And then came the owner of the house. He was tall, well built, and laden with gold jewelry, teeth included. He asked us if we wanted some coke. Oh dear god! We had somehow landed up in a drug lord's house. What will he do to me if I refuse his coke? He will probably just kill me on the spot, take all my money and bury my bodyparts throughout Rio. So I nervously nodded and off he went to a backroom. A few heart-pounding moments later, he came back with two cans of chilled coke. Phew!