From Copacabana Beach to Sugarloaf Mountain, there is an astounding amount of things to do in Rio de Janeiro. If you are looking to spend a day on the beach, lazing in the sun, or snorkeling in the shallow water, then Rio offers many top spots. Rio de Janeiro is filled with many must see museums including the Museum of Modern Art, the Museu Nacional de Belas Artes, and the Imperial Museum of Brazil. With so many Rio de Janeiro activities, it could be hard to decide what to do first.…
Top 57 Things to do in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- All Activities (57)
- Adventures (8)
- Air, Balloon & Helicopter Tours (3)
- Airport Shuttles & Limos (1)
- Attractions (14)
- Culinary Experiences (5)
- Day Cruises & Water Activities (6)
- Events & Shows (1)
- Land Adventures (12)
- Restaurants & Nightlife (8)
- Sports (1)
- Tickets & Passes (1)
- Tours & Sightseeing (50)
After being picked up from your hotel, ride south of Rio to the town of Angra dos Reis, a waterfront city whose rugged and savage coastline is dotted with beaches. Spend some time strolling the streets in town, admiring colonial buildings that date back to the 1500s, then step aboard a handsome schooner and take a seat on its sun-drenched deck.
As you sail out across the turquoise waves, look back to admire the brightly colored buildings of Angra seemingly piled atop the verdant hillsides. Then turn your gaze out to sea and the more than 300 islands of the archipelago before you.
Cruise between islets, through channels, and over tropical waters teeming with vibrant marine life. When your captain drops anchor, dive into the sea for a refreshing swim, then climb back on board for a delicious buffet of Brazilian dishes before your return to shore.
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Board a boat and cruise along Guanabara Bay as you gaze at the immense statue of Christ the Redeemer, perched on the peak of Corcovado. Keep your camera handy as you marvel at the renowned Sugarloaf Mountain and get a glimpse of the famous Copacabana Beach, spanning approximately 2. 5 miles (4 km) and popular with international tourists.
Along the way snap a few photos and spot Leblon Beach, one of the quietest beaches of southern Rio de Janeiro, stretching 1 mile (1. 5 km) and featuring a calmer environment than Copacabana. While you sail on the bay, nibble on snacks and sip a refreshing soft drink or beer. Bring your swimsuit, as you get the change to jump in the cooling water at one of the stops. Read More close
The garden houses monuments of historical, artistic, and archaeological significance. Identified by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve, the garden has an important research institute on site that conducts a range of botanical studies.
Marvelous sculptures and fountains make the garden particularly distinct, as well as a variety of birds and monkeys that call the area home. Stroll by an old gunpowder factory, and admire Victoria lilies in the Lago Frei Leandro pond. Enjoy hassle-free transportation back to your hotel after your day in the garden. Read More close
Choose between 2 entrée options: either Moqueca, a decadent seafood-coconut stew originally from Bahia, or Feijoada, a black bean and pork stew served over cassava sticks. The master chef guides you from start to finish, describing how to pick the freshest ingredients and the best practices for prepping your dishes.
While you cook, quench your thirst with 2 mouthwatering alcoholic drinks: the world-renowned Caipirinha cocktail and a Brazilian favorite, the coconut-based Batida de Coco cocktail. Don't forget to write down all ingredients and instructions along the way so you can impress your family and friends back home. Read More close
After being picked up from your hotel, ride out to the fishing village of Armaçao dos Búzios, where your knowledgeable guide gives you a brief introduction to the peninsula’s towns and beaches, and then sets you loose to explore on your own.
Head out to the Portugese colonial area of Ossos on the tip of the peninsula and scope out the resorts of Manguinhos. Window shop, stop to eat, or sip a caipirhina on bustling Rua des Pedras, and be sure to stroll the beachfront promenade of Orla Bardot. Choose any of the more than 20 beaches that range from lively to secluded, and relax with your toes in the sand before your return trip to Rio.
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Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
Make your way to the City of Samba and its warehouses to begin your guided tour. Visit the Academicos da Grande Rio depot, where the majestic platform decorations are built. The fascinating display of creativity features a wide array of colorful, shiny, and extravagant costumes used in the parades.
Learn the history of Carnival and the samba as you proceed to the Exposure Room. Later, try on one of the unique costumes and get your photo taken dressed as an authentic samba dancer. Last but not least, sip down a delicious caipirinha, Brazil's must-taste cocktail made of cachaça (sugar cane liquor) and lime. Read More close
Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
3 hours 30 minutes
Following your hotel pickup, head to the Christ the Redeemer statue on Corcovado hill, one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. On the way, note the Palacio de Guanabara, the governor's residence, as well the Laranjeiras and Cosme Velho neighborhoods.
Arrive at Tijuca Forest to begin your journey to Christ the Redeemer. During the 45-minute visit to the world-famous monument, admire the stunning views from above Rio and take some memorable photos of yourself and one of the world's greatest wonders.
Then, make your way to the Urca neighborhood to board the cable car that takes goes to the top of Morro da Urca, your only stop on the way to Sugarloaf Mountain. As you rise up, get a glimpse of Apothecary's Square and the Casa dos Abacaxis—2 symbols of Rio’s imperial history—as well as the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and National Institute of Mineral Resources.
From there, continue your ascent to the apex of the iconic Sugarloaf Mountain via one of the world’s oldest cable cars. Along the way to the summit, take in the spectacular views of Rio and the surrounding landscape. After visiting the mountaintop, head back down to Rio, where you can spend the evening exploring the city you just saw from 1,299 feet (396 m). Read More close
Get ready—Rio de Janeiro's most famous icon is waiting for you. Head out to Tijuca Forest, where you access the trails and paths leading up to the top of Corcovado hill. Enjoy convenient access to the iconic monument that tends to get very crowded during the day, and take some of the best photographs your camera or cell phone will ever capture.
Standing on the top of the hill, admire a stunning panorama, including Rio’s famous beaches, neighborhoods, and Rio's other great landmark—Sugarloaf Mountain. After visiting Christ the Redeemer, head back down to Rio, where you can spend the rest of your day exploring the city you just saw from above. Read More close
After being picked up from your hotel, head to Cosme Velho at the base of Corcovado. This charming neighborhood has an old-world feel and it's where you board the 1885 cogwheel train for your climb up to the summit. Enjoy the views of the densely forested hillside, tropical plants, and Ipanema down below as the train makes it steep ascent toward the feet of Christ the Redeemer.
Perched atop Corcovado’s 2,300-foot (690-m) peak, the landmark Cristo Redentor statue stands a towering 100 feet (30 m) tall with his arms stretching out over the city below. Gaze down at Rio’s clustered neighborhoods, white swaths of beach, Guanabara Bay, and Sugarloaf Mountain from this spectacular vantage point before your return trip on the train. Read More close
Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
A comfortable, air-conditioned van whisks you away from your hotel to the lush green Parque Lage. Embark on a fairly advanced hike and ascend 2,330 feet (710 m) to the top of Corcovado mountain, where you gain breathtaking views of one of Brazil's most famous landmarks. Along the way, marvel at Tijuca Forest National Park's century-old palm trees, cascading waterfalls, and large variety of exotic birds.
After a brisk 2. 5-hour hike, savor rewarding views of the 125-foot (38-m) tall Christ the Redeemer statue and listen as your guide tells of the statue's unique history, architecture, and 9-year building process. After snapping unparalleled pictures of the monument, relax on your air-conditioned van ride back to the base of the mountain. Read More close
Meet up with your guide directly outside your hotel and head out to visit your first stop of the day. While stops vary based on your interests and seasonal availability, you might tuck into bowls of savory feijoada (meat and black bean stew), try delicate bites of juicy churrasco (grilled beef), or grab a few forkfuls of pastel brasileiro (crispy pie with assorted fillings).
As you taste, listen to your guide share intriguing stories about the influences that contribute to Rio de Janeiro's flavorful cuisine and get tips on other places to dine before wrap up your excursion with a leisurely stroll back to your hotel. Read More close
Upon meeting your local guide, use public transportation to get to Vidigal, where the exciting trail starts. After a 1-hour hike, you reach the (17,590-foot) (533-m) hilltop of Dois Irmãos , which means “Two Brothers. ” Marvel at the impressive view of the metropolis’ southern neighborhoods, along with the iconic Ipanema and Leblon beaches, the Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon, and even the famous Corcovado hill. On the other side, get a glimpse of lush Tijuca, the world’s largest urban forest.
Hike back to Vidigal to continue the walking tour in one of Brazil’s famous favelas. Witness the daily life of locas in this very densely populated area and learn interesting facts about these unique urban hubs.
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Your tour starts at Copacabana, one of the most famous beaches in the world, and leads you through the neighborhoods of Botafogo, Praia Vermelha, and Urca. Visit Botafogo's beach for the amazing view of Sugarloaf Mountain and see the attractions at Flamengo's Park: Estácio de Sá's monument, Flamengo's beach, and the Museum of Modern Art.
When you get to the historic center of Rio, ride through the streets, squares, and buildings as your guide describes the chronology of Brazilian history. You can see historic attractions such as Candelária's Church, Tiradentes Square, and the Imperial House, learning the facts of Brazilian history along the way.
After that, you arrive in Lapa, Rio's traditional bohemian district, for a visit to the world-famous Selarón Steps and the aqueduct of Arcos de Lapa. Finish with a stop at Cinelândia, where you can discuss the history of the square and the surrounding buildings' importance.
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Your bicycle ride takes you to the little square in front of the Dona Marta hill. From there, you can ride the funicular railway to the top for a scenic view of the landscape and unique community.
Learn from your guide, a native of the favela, about the area's unique history, including the Michael Jackson video that earned it some international fame. The resulting attention from authorities and society helped reclaim places like Santa Marta from rule by drug dealers and crime. Read More close
Start your day with convenient hotel pickup and get a chance to see a beautiful and different perspective of Rio. As you explore the favela, a slum pacified by the police, get to know the daily routine of the local residents and listen to live commentary from your guide.
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Begin at Flamengo Park, the largest public park in Rio de Janeiro, with a total area of nearly 4 million square feet (1,200,000 sq m), extending all the way from the Santos Dumont Airport in downtown to the beginning of Botafogo's beach. Ride the bike path inside the park and visit the many attractions, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Monument to the Dead of World War II, Marina da Glória, the Monument to Estácio de Sá, and 2 beaches—Flamengo and Glória. Admire the many birds attracted to the park's diverse floral landscaping.
Leave the park and ride a bike path to the Vermelha Beach, located in the Urca neighborhood, the starting point to the Sugarloaf cable car. Cross the Old Tunnel to reach Copacabana beach, and ride the cycle path while enjoying its many beauties. Read More close
Begin your morning with an exploration of downtown Rio’s Beaux Arts architecture and its bustling neighborhoods. Cruise by the Sambadrome, where Brazil’s world-famous dancing clubs perform during the city’s wild Carnival celebration. Gaze up at the pyramidal Metropolitan Cathedral; then pass by Cinelandia square’s collection of government and public buildings.
Wind your way through the hip beachfront neighborhood of Urca to Sugarloaf Mountain. This massive granite monolith towers 1,299 feet (396 m) above the harbor. Board its famed teleférico (cable car) and ride up to the peak for sweeping, panoramic vistas over Guanabara Bay, Copacabana, and the city below.
Next, make your way to the base of Corcovado mountain and enjoy a delicious lunch of fresh Brazilian seafood. Then hop on the Corcovado train in Cosmo Velho to chug your way up the 2. 4-mile (3. 8-km) rainforest-lined track to the top.
Step onto the mountaintop viewing platform and stand at the base of Rio’s emblematic Christ the Redeemer statue, whose 92-foot (28-m) armspan stretches out to embrace the city from on high. Learn about the background of this towering Art Deco masterpiece before you return to ground level and your tour concludes.
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Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
Your tour begins with pickup from select hotels and a visit to the Mosteiro de São Bento, a monastery founded in the 1500s by Benedictine monks from Bahia. Proceed to the imposing Candelária Church, featuring Baroque and neoclassical elements, and head to Primeiro de Marzo Street where you find the Banco do Brasil Cultural Center, Rio’s main post office, as well as the Imperial and Tiradentes palaces.
Pay a visit to the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil building to find out more about the financial institution’s numerous arts and cultural projects. Next, admire one of Rio’s most impressive structures, the Art Nouveau Teatro Municipal, built in 1909. Wrap up the tour by visiting Cinelândia, a popular public square where you find the National Library and the National Museum of Fine Arts. Read More close
After a convenient hotel pickup, ride 37 miles (60 km) to serene Petropolis, the mountain retreat of Brazil’s only 2 emperors. Breathe in the fresh air of the forest-blanketed Serra dos Orgaos as you pass by bucolic farms settled by German farmers from the Rhineland.
Visit the Imperial Museum, housed within the summer residence of Emperor Pedro II, to see the furniture, tapestries, and even the imperial crown worn by Brazil’s emperors—this magnificent headpiece is adorned with no less than 600 diamonds and 77 pearls. Admire the manicured gardens and neoclassical architecture of the one-time imperial residence as you learn about the emperor’s reign.
At the stunning Gothic Catedral Sao Pedro de Alcantara whose spire stretches up into the sky, pay your respects at the tomb of Brazil’s last emperor, his wife, and his daughter Isabel, known as the Redemptress.
Finally, marvel at the Palacio de Cristal—this stunning glass structure was imported from France for events and exhibits thrown by Princess Isabel, and it was the place she signed the Golden Law to abolish slavery in Brazil.
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Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
After pickup from your hotel, make your way to the foot of Pedra de Gávea. Named the Topsail Rock by the Portuguese sailors back in the 1500s, the granite mountain stands at 2,763 feet (842 m). As you head to the top, follow your professional guide and climb through few obstacles.
Once you reach the peak, relax and marvel at the impressive sights including Rio's southern coastline, the vast Tijuca Forest, and Rocinha, Brazil's largest favela (the term for slum). Looking farther into the expansive view from the peak, get a glimpse of the symbolic Corcovado hill and Sugarloaf Mountain.
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As you cruise along the bay, see the beautiful landscape of Rio from a special angle. Guanabara Bay, the largest bay of the world by volume of water, has many islands such as Governor's Island, Fundão and Snakes Island.
As you look west, see Rio de Janeiro, and in the east, see the municipal district of Niterói. A beautiful view of the city appears as you leave Marina Da Gloria by Saveiro. Spot the neighborhoods of Botafogo, Flamengo, and Urca, as well as Sugarloaf, Fort São Joao, Flagstone Island, Santa Cruz Fortress, and Rio-Niterói Bridge. Before returning to your hotel, enjoy lunch in Ipanema. Read More close
After convenient hotel pick-up, step onto the deck of a schooner and set out across the expansive waters of Guanabara Bay. Look back at the craggy, verdant mountains framing the colorful beachfront downtown of Rio de Janeiro as you cruise over the waves.
See the beaches of Niteroi, and sail past the vibrant neighborhoods of Botafogo, Flamengo, and Urca. Gaze up at towering Sugarloaf Mountain, the monolithic peak that rises 1,299 feet (396 m) above the harbor, and watch the cable cars deposit visitors onto its dramatic vantage points.
Pass the fortified walls of the seafront Fortaleza de Santa Cruz de Barra, built in 1555, and admire the hillside Fortaleza de Sao Joao. As you ride by the islands that dot the bay, marvel at the Rio-Niteroi Bridge—the longest bridge in the southern hemisphere—before you return to shore.
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See dazzling Rio spread out beneath you as you take to the air from Sugarloaf Mountain to catch views of Arpoador Rock, Ipanema, Leblon, the statue of Christ the Redeemer, and the famous beaches of Copacabana. This flight gives you an express tour of all there is to see when you get back down to sea level. Read More close
After being picked up from your hotel, begin your tour at the Sao Bento Monastery. This 16th-century church complex features rococo carvings and a beautiful, filigreed altar. From there, admire the Baroque façade of the Igreja da Candelária and continue on to Praça XV in the Portugese heart of town. Learn about the historic events of the landmark Paço Imperial palace, then make your along historic Travessa do Mercado to the Old Cathedral.
This towering edifice was used as a royal and imperial chapel by the Portugese and Brazilian ruling families. Pass by the Art Deco Banco de Brasil building, which houses art galleries and theaters, and learn about the neoclassical Casa França-Brasil.
Stroll up elegant Rua do Ouvidor and by the shops of Rua Gonçalves Dias, where you can pop into the historic Confeitaria Colombo. This turn-of-the-century coffee house features stunning Belle Epoque décor and stained glass as well as world-famous pastries and tea.
Wander up the lively flea markets near Uruguaiana Station and Carioca Square before your tour concludes at the Metropolitan Cathedral. This pyramid-shaped house of worship has stained glass windows that soar 210 feet (64 m) skyward. Read More close
Begin at the beach of Ipanema, immortalized by Tom Jobim's famous song, Girl from Ipanema. Ride along the bike path until you arrive at Jardim de Alah (Allah's Garden), where a canal connects to the sea and separates the beaches of Ipanema and Leblon.
Ride up to Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon, flanked by upscale neighborhoods, including Lagoa, Ipanema, Leblon, Gávea and Jardim Botânico. This area is also framed by mountains and embraced by Christ the Redeemer. The lagoon impresses at sunset, as the golden orb reflects on silent waters. Ride the bike path, passing 3 parks, functioning as the city's established entertainment areas.
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From your launching point at Urca Beach, you can visit many outstanding locations inside the bay. Your double-hulled canoe uses a design that ancient Polynesian voyagers used to cross the Pacific, and with ideal conditions, you can head out to open sea.
Visit Fora Beach, located just beneath the amazing Sugarloaf Mountain. Weather permitting, you can cool down for a while and go for a swim. Get some great exercise and an unforgettable experience in the waters off the coast of Rio. Read More close
Affectionately known by locals as "Pantanal Carioca," the lagoons offer a wealth of surprises with the great beauty and diversity of its wildlife. A differentiated and unique entertainment promenade lets you enjoy a terrific view in the refreshing breeze as you admire this natural wonder.
With tours in the morning, afternoon, and evening, you can take an unforgettable ride through the amazing lagoon complex at your favorite time of day, unraveling all its secrets and biodiversity. Read More close
With convenient roundtrip transportation from São Conrado, Leblon, Ipanema, or Copacabana hotels, leave Rio and start your guided tour with the visit to the Imperial Museum—the former summer residence of Emperor D. Pedro II—showcasing furniture and objects such as the crown of gold, pearls, and diamonds used by D. Pedro I and D. Pedro II.
The tour continues to the Gothic cathedral where Princess Isabel was buried and see the tombstones of D. Pedro II and his wife. Next, admire the Crystal Palace, built in France and assembled in Brazil, destined to hold exhibitions and great parties promoted by Princess Isabel.
Then visit the Bohemia Beer Factory, the first brewer in Brazil, for an interactive journey through the history, art, and science of brewing. Learn about beer from ancient times to the present and get a chance to taste Bohemia direct from the source in a modern environment. The brewery also has a shop, bar, and restaurant offering special beers with tasty dishes and snacks. Read More close
Located 37 miles (60 km) away from Rio de Janeiro, Petropolis has been called the Imperial City and is named for Brazil's last emperor, Pedro II. Settled by Germans and once a summer residence for aristocrats, Petropolis keeps the memory of Brazilian history alive with its buildings and charming streets.
With a personal guide to share insight into the city, you can learn the storied background behind the venerable sights. Customize your itinerary and your destinations as you like: see the Imperial Museum, Quitandinha Palace, Gothic Cathedral, or the homes of royalty from the days of the Empire of Brazil to get your most out of your time in Petropolis. Read More close
Leave your hotel in the convenience of a comfortable, air-conditioned van and set off to the trailhead in Bom Retiro. Set off on a hike through Tijuca Forest National Park and marvel at the towering trees, lush green landscape, and animals like monkeys and exotic birds. The 1. 5-hour journey covers about 3. 1 miles (5 km) with an average incline of 14 percent—a generally moderate hike.
Near the mountain's summit, notice a unique stone stairway—said to be from the 1920s. The final steps up to the peak lead to an impressive 360-degree view of Rio lined by the deep blue water of Guanabara Bay. Read More close
After convenient hotel pick-up, take a seat in the Plataforma theater as the curtain comes up and the glitz turns on. Be whisked away by the performers onstage—a talented cast of mulata dancers and their male counterparts takes you on a cultural journey through the popular music and dance of Brazil.
Listen to the heady rhythms of samba and the beats of African percussion. Marvel at the capoeira—a combination of dance and martial arts—before the grand finale, where a spectacular ensemble of performers parades before you in traditional, sparkling, feathered, and festive Carnival costumes.
If you choose to enjoy dinner before the show, savor the flavors of traditional Brazilian cuisine as you’re served grilled meats and local specialties at the Plataforma’s churrascaria barbecue restaurant. Read More close
Enjoy roundtrip transportation and explore Rio de Janeiro, called "Cidade Maravilhosa" or "marvelous city," known for its natural beauty, carnival celebrations, samba, and famous beaches like Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. See landmarks such as the Christ the Redeemer statue atop Corcovado Mountain, Sugarloaf Mountain with its cable car, and Maracanã Stadium, one of the world's largest football stadiums which hosts matches for Rio's major teams.
With half a day to see the sights, choosing the best itinerary may be a difficult task. If you like, visit the neighborhood of Santa Teresa and walk along cobbled streets to see the Selarón Steps and the Centro Cultural Municipal Parque das Ruínas.
Admire the buildings of downtown Rio or visit the Botanical Garden, a unique park due the variety of species, and behold the view surrounded by Tijuca Rainforest. If you wish, take the ride up to the 125-foot (38-m) tall Christ the Redeemer statue and behold the view of the Tijuca Rainforest. Read More close
This tour lets you meet one of the greatest landmarks in Rio, Christ the Redeemer, located at the peak of the 2,300-foot (700-m) mountain of Corcovado in the Tijuca Forest National Park. Get a private trip to the Cosme Velho Train cog station at the bottom of the mountain for the ride through the dense Tijuca rainforest. At the top, face the 98-foot-tall (30-m) statue and behold the outstanding views of Rio and the surrounding countryside.
After this spectacular experience, take your time and see the city at your leisure on this customizable tour. Take advantage of your knowledgeable guide and check out several more of Rio's wonders that you just can't miss. Read More close
On this customizable tour, you get private roundtrip transportation to reach the Cosme Velho Train cog station at the bottom of Corcovado Mountain. Take the ride up to the top, through the dense Tijuca Rainforest, and admire the 125-foot (38-m) tall Christ the Redeemer statue and behold fabulous views of Rio de Janeiro.
Next, head to the neighborhood of Urca, the location of one of the largest symbols of the city, Sugarloaf Mountain. Travel all the way to the top in 2 steps by cable car. The first cable car takes you to Urca Hill, a vantage point 705 feet (215 m), offering beautiful views of Guanabara Bay and its islands, the Rio-Niterói Bridge, and Corcovado Mountain.
From this stage, a second cable car takes you up to the top. At 1,296 feet (395 m), enjoy splendid views of Copacabana Beach, the Santa Cruz Fortress, and several beaches of Niterói. After this amazing experience, take your time on this customizable tour and check out some of Rio’s many other wonders. Read More close
Feel the refreshing spray of the Monkey's and Taunay waterfalls, pausing to take in impressive views of Rio and its surroundings at Vista Chinesa. No visit to the rainforest would be complete without actually hiking the trails under the canopy and interacting with the remarkable ecosystem. Enjoy an approximately 20- to 30- minute hike along a well-maintained trail and observe the plants, animals, butterflies, and birds of the rainforest. Read More close
An air-conditioned van takes you from your hotel to the vast botanical garden. Once you arrive at this world-famous park, stroll along the palm tree-lined road to see a variety of exotic plants. Learn about the beautiful fountains, hundreds of tropical birds, and the famous greenhouse that grows more than 500 kinds of orchids.
The journey continues to the Tijuca Atlantic Forest for an easy 30-minute hike with stunning views. Pass the thundering Cascatinha de Taunay (Taunay Waterfall), the hidden Capela Mayrink (Mayring Chapel), and beautiful Açude da Solidão (Dam of Solitude). Along the way, learn about the forest's unique ecosystem and diverse wildlife. You may even spot a hanging monkey or a toucan. Read More close
Settle into a comfortable jeep and let a knowledgeable take you through alleys and commerce districts, observing the city's hustle and bustle the whole way. The daily life and routine of the locals is on full display.
After exploring Rio, take a trip to nearby Tijuca, the world's largest urban rainforest. Take a 20- to 30-minute hike and admire the rainforest's plantlife, animals, and birds while taking in lush green scenery. Enjoy a hassle-free ride back to your hotel after your tour ends. Read More close
Take off from Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon and get ready for breathtaking aerial scenery as the helicopter makes its way around the Botafogo and Guanabara bays. Get a glimpse of the Corcovado Hill and its world-famous Christ the Redeemer statue, Rio's symbol. Looking toward Guanabara Bay, you spot another main attraction, the peak of Pão de Açúcar, dominating the city. On your way back to the helipad, enjoy views over the Ipanema and Copacabana beaches.
For a more complete experience, take the longer tour, featuring a full lap around the Christ the Redeemer statue as well as a flight over Rio's 3 main beaches, Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. You also hover close to the enchanting Botanical Garden and Tijuca, one of the world's largest urban rainforests.
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Categories: Air, Balloon & Helicopter Tours
Hop in an open-roof jeep with your guide and set off to the famed southern neighborhood of Rocinha, passing through the affluent area of Gávea on the way. Upon your arrival, climb up to the Carlinhos rooftop for an awe-inspiring view of the favela. Take in the impossibly dense array of colorful construction built into a steep hillside and marvel at the contrast of the surrounding trees with the extensive concrete and brick.
Then head down the narrow streets, familiarizing yourself with this unique community, and continue to the public market at Largo do Boiadeiro. Experience the lively and slightly chaotic atmosphere of the plaza, where you can enjoy local delicacies or purchase colorful handicrafts.
Afterward, stop at Rocinha's renowned samba school, where students learn Brazil's classic rhythmic dance. Your memorable visit to Rocinha concludes with a ride back to your hotel via the beautifully scenic Avenida Niemeyer. Read More close
Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
The traditional Samba dance is said to be derived from African origin and celebrates the culture's rhythmic drums and energetic dancing. See how it has since grown to become the quintessential music and dance form associated with Brazil's renowned Carnival and get up-close views of a dancer's elaborate costume.
Your instructors illustrate the basic dance movements and how to follow the lively music beat. Then it's your turn. Don't be shy—much of Samba dancing is improvised once mastered, so dance the night away. Read More close
Categories: Restaurants & Nightlife
Meet your guide at Cine Odeon to begin your walking tour along Santa Teresa's narrow streets. Take a local bus or tram up the hill, passing through the Lapa Arches. Feel the enchantment as you pass by picturesque French-style mansions, a symbol of the quarter's past grandeur. Today, Santa Teresa is best known for its numerous art studios and galleries, making it into one of Rio's main cultural hubs. It is by far the city's most colorful area thanks to the impressive displays of street art.
Soon you reach Parque das Ruínas, a name derived from the ruins of an old mansion. Don't miss the viewpoint here, which offers panoramic views over Botafogo Bay and Sugarloaf Mountain. Then head to the Selarón Steps. Renovated and decorated by the Chilean artist Jorge Selarón, the stairs are regarded as his gift to the Brazilian people.
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Copacabana and Ipanema
Select this option for hotels located in Copacabana and Ipanema.
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Categories: Airport Shuttles & Limos
With skip-the-line access, you can walk directly into this traditional venue and gather your friends in comfort and convenience. The antique aspects of the house coincide harmoniously with the modern and comfortable vibe you get as you walk into this place, and the informal atmosphere is meant to be enjoyed with some of Brazil's most famous and popular singers. Read More close
Travel all the way to the top of Sugarloaf in 2 steps by cable car. The first car takes your group to Urca Hill, a vantage point 705 feet (215 m) high that offers beautiful views of Guanabara Bay and its islands, the Rio-Niterói Bridge, and Corcovado Mountain. Next, a second car takes you up to the top. At 1,296 feet (395 m), enjoy splendid views of Copacabana beach, the Santa Cruz fortress, and several beaches of Niterói.
Next, proceed to the Cosme Velho Train cog station at the bottom of Corcovado Mountain and ride to the top, through the dense Tijuca rain forest to the 125-foot (38-m) Christ the Redeemer statue. From the top, enjoy the spectacular views of Rio and the surrounding countryside as your guide points out other well-known landmarks. Read More close
Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
Begin your tour with a visit to Christ the Redeemer—an enormous monument erected over Rio in 1931. With arms reaching 92 feet (28 m) across, this impressive Art Deco statue stretches more than 98 feet (29 m) into the skies. From its mountain-top perch, take in the panoramic sights of the city below, and leave knowing why it was dubbed one of the ‘New 7 Wonders of the World. ’
From here, head to the favela of Santa Marta. Alongside your guide, explore the narrow alleyways, chat with locals, and uncover the vibrant cultural pulse behind these unique communities. Then make your way to a particularly spectacular vista overlooking Guanabara Bay—made famous by Michael Jackson himself—and relive the moving footage recorded during his ‘They Don’t Care About Us’ music video.
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This Rio favela tour gives you a local look into the real Rio, from its beautiful vistas to one of its favelas, made famous in Michael Jackson's They Don’t Care About Us music video.
Accompanied by your local guide, step into the Santa Marta favela, and take a walk through the community. Meet locals and hear stories about what life is really like here. Navigate the narrow alleys, learn about local life, and dispel some of the myths surrounding these vibrant communities.
In the heart of it all are some of the most stunning views in the city. Take a moment and stop so you can take it all in—Guanabara Bay and Botafogo look best from up here. Now is a great opportunity to reflect on your favela tour and ask your local guide any questions you may have. Read More close
Meet your guide at the classic Copacabana Palace Hotel, and then hop on the subway to ride to a nearby space where you can gather around the table to kickstart your culinary adventure. Bite into an innovative feijoada brigadeiro, a clever appetizer that combines the flavors of the classic Brazilian dish feijoada with the truffle-like appearance of the beloved dessert, brigadeiro, and wash it down with a sweet and minty caipirinha—Brazil's national drink.
Next, tighten your apron strings and prepare for a cooking lesson with a local chef. Learn the background behind the feijoada, a Portuguese stew made with beans, pork, and sausage, and pick up special pointers for preparing this beloved dish and its classic accompaniments. For a sweet treat, learn to prepare the brigadeiro, a bite-sized truffle made with condensed milk, cocoa, butter, and chocolate sprinkles. Once everything is prepared, sit down to feast on the fruits of your labor with the group. Read More close
Greet your guide and hop on the subway—just like the a local—and head for downtown Rio. Admire the passing scenes of the bustling city beginning its day, and disembark at Carioca Station for a stroll through the Financial District. This area is home to Carioca Square—one of Rio's main sources of drinking water—transported in by the Aqueducts of Lapa.
Then jump into a tram for the 20-minute journey to historic Santa Teresa. Once a district dominated by the elite, this enclave now consists of the artistic underbelly of the city—complete with ample cafés, art galleries, and restaurants. Check out Ruins Park, offering stunning views over all of Rio, and make a stop at the local convent, named after a popular Carnival street band called ‘’Bloco das Carmelitas. ’’
As the tour winds down, take a moment to dance down Selaron's Staircase. An iconic set of steps, this brightly colored stairwell was crafted as Selaron’s ‘’tribute to the Brazilian people’’, and considered one of his most famous works of art.
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From beautiful vistas and iconic locations, to some of the communities that have helped make this city the melting pot that it is, you're sure to find Rio a captivating and complex place that steals your heart forever. On this full-day Rio tour you explore the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue, see what local life is really like in a favela, and experience the Bohemian vibe in the Santa Teresa neighborhood.
Take the subway downtown so you can experience how locals get around Rio and help orientate yourself in the city. Hop off at Carioca Station and wander through the Financial District, home to huge companies such as Petrobras and BNDES. Check out Carioca Square, once the main source of drinking water in Rio, transported in by the Aqueducts of Lapa.
From here, climb aboard the tram for the journey up to Santa Teresa, which is a 20-minute ride over the aqueducts, which are now used as the tram route. Hop off at Largo dos Guimaraes to explore the cobblestone streets of Santa Teresa. Wander about on foot and discover beautiful architecture, art galleries, restaurants, and local customs that characterize Santa Teresa.
Santa Teresa was previously a neighborhood dominated by the elite, but with their departure to more modern suburbs of Rio, it has been transformed into an artistic center with many artists choosing the area as their preferred place of residence. Among the attractions in Santa Teresa is the Ruins Park and its gorgeous view over downtown Rio de Janeiro and Guanabara Bay. Many visitors compare Santa Teresa to the bohemian district of Montmartre in Paris.
As your time in Santa Teresa winds down, you have one final (and rather important) stop to make: Selaron's Steps. This masterpiece and picturesque icon is one of the late artist's most famous pieces, and is without a doubt one of the highlights of this Rio tour.
Your tour continues with an incredible bird's-eye view of the city from the base of the Statue of Christ. This enormous white statue keeps constant watch over Rio, offering sweeping 360-degree views of the city's natural wonders: beaches, lagoons, forests, bays, and mountains that seem to rise from the ocean. It's no wonder that the statue was recently selected as one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.
Next, it's time to trade in this tourist icon for something less visited and step into the Santa Marta favela. Accompanied by your local guide, wander through the community, meeting the people who live here and seeing the places made famous by a Michael Jackson music video. Stroll the narrow alleys, learn about local life, and dispel some of the myths about these vibrant communities. Read More close
Categories: Tours & Sightseeing
Begin to explore downtown Rio after convenient pickup from your hotel. Visit the Metropolitan Cathedral which was built in a pyramidal form. Then familiarize yourself with traditional Cinelândia Square as you see the historic buildings of the Municipal Theater, National Library, and the National Museum of Fine Arts.
Via the Aterro do Flamengo, you are then taken to the neighborhood of Urca, where the Sugar Loaf—one of the largest symbols of the city—is located. Ride the cable car to Urca Hill vantage point where you can see beautiful views of Guanabara Bay and its islands, the Rio-Niterói Bridge, and Corcovado Mountain.
From here continue further up by cable car for even more expansive views that include Copacabana Beach, the Santa Cruz fortress, and several of the beaches of Niterói. Then savor a delicious lunch in a barbecue restaurant before taking your helicopter flight. In this 9 minute flight, you see the trees from the charming Botanical Garden, founded by Former King João VI, Tijuca Rainforest, and the Christ Redeemer Statue, before flying back down to the lagoon. Read More close
Wake up early and get picked up directly outside your hotel before heading toward Rio’s southeastern tip. Enjoy early access and skip the wait times as you jump straight on a cable car with massive viewing windows. Get your camera ready and start the scenic journey to the top of Sugarloaf Mountain, kown locally as Pão de Açúcar.
At the top, enjoy spectacular views of the golden sands lining Copacabana, the turquoise waters of Guanabara Bay, the hunched peak of Corcovado, and the bustling neighborhoods of Botafogo and Flamengo.
Catch glimpses of Niterói's affluent shores and Icarai beach across the bay and listen to your guide as they point out other distant landmarks. When you're ready to head back down, jump in the cable car and enjoy a smooth descent before catching a ride back to your hotel. Read More close
After being picked up from your hotel, pass by the Sambadrome, where samba schools parade during the city’s world-famous Carnival celebration. Gaze up at the pyramidal structure of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastien, and admire the Beaux Arts buildings surrounding the central plaza of Cinelandia—the Biblioteca Nacional, the Theatro Municipal, and the Museu Nacional de Belas Artes are all located here.
Then cruise through the sprawling Attero do Flamengo park to the seaside neighborhood of Urca, where Sugarloaf mountain soars up from the waves. Board a teleférico cable car at Sugarloaf Mountain for a 2-part ride to the top of this monolithic granite peak—named by the Portugese during the area’s sugar trading heyday because the rocky hill resembles the conical molds once used to transport sugar by ship. Your first ascent takes you up 720 feet (220 m) to Morro da Urca, and your second to Pau de Acucar, which rises 1,299 feet (396 m) over the harbor.
From this spectacular vantage point, take in sweeping views out over Rio. Look down on Guanabara Bay, the Rio-Niteroi Bridge, the white swath of Copacabana, the Fortaleza de Santa Cruz, and the towering statue of Christ the Redeemer atop Corcovado Mountain before you descend back into town.
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After convenient pickup from your hotel, board a spacious and comfortable cruise ship at dusk and drift peacefully into Guanabara Bay, where you're greeted by sights of Copacabana, the Leblon beach neighborhood, and the towering mountain of Corcovado. Watch for the magnificent Christ the Redeemer statue in the distance, keeping a watchful eye over the bay. Munch on snacks and sip ice-cold beer while taking in the sweeping vistas that dim slowly as the sun sinks lower in the sky.
Marvel at rays of warm sunlight bouncing off the majestic Sugarloaf Mountain as the sun disappears. At this point, dinner is served. Dig into a hearty barbecue buffet with all the usual fixings, prepared right on the boat's deck. Beer and soft drinks flow, and spectacular sights of the moonlit coast create a nighttime experience you won't soon forget. Bring your swimsuit, as you get the change to jump in the cooling water at one of the stops. Read More close
This world-famous street party goes on for 5 fun- and dance-filled days, and is split into 3 events. The first stage of Carnival—the Access Group—is the parade of samba schools aspiring to qualify for the main event the following year. The next stage is the Special Group, featuring the crème de la crème of Brazil's samba schools. The newly proclaimed Carnival champion and 5 runners-up participate in the final event—the Champion's parade.
Each participating school gets an hour on the Sambadrome stage to display their dancing skills and splendid parade platforms and costumes. Immerse yourself in the joyful atmosphere and be inspired by the bright colors and captivating rhythms of Carnival as you take it all in from Sector 9, which features bleachers with allocated seats and exceptional views.
This year's Access Group parade takes place Friday, February 13th and Saturday, February 14th, followed by the main event on Sunday the 15th and Monday the 16th. The winner is announced Wednesday, and on Champion's Saturday—February 21st—the 6 best schools return to the Sambadrome for a memorable final parade.
Access Group parades: 9 PM–3:30 AM
Special Group parades: 9 PM–3:50 AM
Champions parade: 9 PM–3:50 AM Read More close
Hop into an open-air jeep and set off to the southern neighborhood of Rocinha, densely populated and home to more than 70,000 people. Follow your local guide to the Carlinhos rooftop, the favela's most popular viewpoint. From there, observe the multi-colored brick and concrete structures built into a steep hill.
Then head down the narrow streets toward the public market, Largo do Boiadeiro. Experience the lively and slightly chaotic atmosphere of the plaza, where you can enjoy local delicacies and purchase colorful handicrafts. Next, stop at Rocinha's renowned samba school, where locals perfect the rhythmic Brazilian dance.
Afterward, ride south to the Tijuca neighborhood and its adjacent rainforest. Admire the impressively dense jungle, hand-planted by the local government in the 19th century, and stroll along the trail walk. Soon you reach the magnificent Cascatinha Falls, its rushing water a final stunning sight. Read More close
After being picked up from your hotel, hop into an open-air Jeep and head to the Jardim Botanico. This UNESCO-designated site was originally created to grow spices imported from the West Indies, but for the past 200 years has been a public park showcasing rich native and international plants. Admire the water lilies, redwood trees, and Imperial palm trees, as well as more than 500 varieties of orchids on display.
From there, cruise toward the Tijuca Rainforest for an unforgettable immersion into the lush trees and foliage. This hand-planted jungle is the world’s largest urban forest, and stands on land that was once cleared to grow sugar and coffee. From the pagoda at the Chinese Outlook, admire sweeping views of Sugarloaf Mountain and Copacabana.
Trek through the dense vegetation on a light walking tour, keeping your eyes peeled for monkeys, sloths, and tropical birds, and watch the tumbling cascade at Taunay Waterfall. Admire the murals at the Mayring Chapel, and then stop at Pepino Beach to watch the hang gliders soaring over the hills.
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Highlights of the tour include a cable car ride to Sugar Loaf Mountain, a visit to the famous Christ the Redeemer statue, a stop at the Metropolitan Cathedral, and a tour of Rio's downtown area.
Ride a train through Tijuca, the world's largest urban rainforest, and admire a variety of plant and animal life. End your tour with dinner at a traditional Brazilian barbecue restaurant and enjoy a captivating live show with Samba music and dancers. Read More close