Things to Do in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

top of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

If it’s your first time in Rio in Brazil, you can’t pass up relaxing and people-watching along the shores of Copacabana or Ipanema. But don’t spend all of your time at the shore; the Marvelous City has more spectacular natural beauty to offer with sites like Tijuca National Park and Sugar Loaf. Venture into charming neighborhoods like Santa Teresa and Lapa, to get a real taste of what it means to be a Cariocas (native Brazilians born in Rio de Janeiro).

Here are the top 5 things to do in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

1. Centro & Lapa:

The iconic Museum of Tomorrow juts out into the Guanabara Bay as a bold statement of intent and one of the more successful legacies from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The provocative interactive exhibits inside encourage visitors to stop and think about the planet, and are great for all ages. In fact, the whole area around the museum is a must-visit purely for what has been resurrected here.

Take the opportunity to walk along the neighboring Olympic Boulevard, lined with food trucks and street art, occupying the wide open spaces where the eyesore Perimetral highway once stood.

2. Copacabana Beach in Brazil:

It’s the most famous beach in the world and a trip to Rio wouldn’t be complete without spending a day at Copacabana. This four km iconic beach is filled with energy and excitement. Vendors and restaurants line the sand and a wide paved pathway along the road makes for an easy stroll. What we love about Copacabana Beach is how there are no hotels on the beach; they are all located across the road.

The most iconic hotel is the Belmond Copacabana Palace Hotel. This hotel was the first in the area dating back to 1923. It’s almost as if the beach life built up around the Copacabana Palace. The art deco building takes up an entire city block and is the epitome of old world luxury mixed with urban chic.

3. The Theatro Municipal:

The Theatro Municipal was restored to its full glory in 2010. It marked its 100th birthday so grand pillars and delicate golden details once again dominate the main square in Centro’s Cinelândia. Inspired by the Paris Opera House, the main staircase is a sweeping display of marble and onyx opulence. While the auditorium itself seats 2,244 spectators in near-luxurious splendor. The season runs from March until the end of the year.
If you can face waiting in line for up to 90 minutes, most Sunday mornings the theatre makes tickets available for just BRL 1 (19p). This is a brilliant and commendable way to open up the worlds of ballet, contemporary dance and opera to the masses.

4. Downtown Rio:

Downtown Rio in Brazil is definitely worth spending a day to explore. The alleyways are charming mazes filled with cafés and stores. There are markets, cathedrals, museums and monasteries. If you get a chance, be sure to take a Rio City tour.

5. Santa Teresa:

In the mid-1900s, Paris-born entrepreneur Raymundo Ottoni de Castro Maya’s appetite for art was legendary. He helped to found the Museu de Arte Moderna and today his personal collection spans two museums. Hacara do Céu is the better known. A famous daylight raid during carnival in 2006 robbed it of a Picasso and a Dali, but national and international gems remain by the likes of Matisse, Modigliani, Miró and Di Cavalcanti.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is a wonderful place to visit and play.

Other amazing destinations include: Hong Kong, Yellowstone, Bosnia, Canada, Peru