By Nicole Eberhard, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - Favela tours in Rio de Janeiro are a controversial subject. As the Rio has been working to pacify many of the communities with the UPP (Police Pacification Units), tours have been on the rise as curious travelers leave the beach to explore another perspective to the city.

With around 22 percent of Rio's population living in the sweeping neighborhoods locally terms 'favelas', they’re a reality that cannot, and should not, be ignored.

Those who pioneered the first favela tours, such as Marcelo Armstrong, the man behind the

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