Celebrate Brazilian culture in the city where the samba was born and enjoy the stunning natural wonders right at its doorstep.  

Located on the southeast coast of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro is a city blessed with a spectacular geography that merges white-sand beaches with rain forest-covered mountains. Outdoor enthusiasts will revel in the opportunities to connect with nature, but there are also plenty of attractions for culture buffs. As a former capital of Brazil, Rio is rich with history and modern culture, ensuring an enjoyable trip regardless of whether you prefer state parks or samba.

Catch the sunrise on either the upscale Ipanema Beach on the southeastern coast or the nearby playful Copacabana Beach. Before sunset, make your way to Sugarloaf Mountain (Pao de Acucar). Take a cable-car ride to the top for a remarkable view including beaches, forests and other landmarks.

Make time for a trip to Corcovado, home of the statue Christ the Redeemer, known locally as Cristo Redentor. Beat the crowds by arriving early as this free “New Seven Wonders of the World” attraction is on every traveler’s itinerary. You’ll understand why when you see the impressive views surrounding this statue, which was erected in 1931.

Corcovado is in the Tijuca National Park, the perfect place to connect with nature. Conservationists replanted much of the park in the late 1800s after substantial deforestation. This destination is now a lush home to more than 100 native animal species, making it the largest urban forest in the world. Amenities along the trails include restaurants and restrooms.

Soccer fans won’t want to miss a match at the famous Maracanã Stadium. If you can’t catch a game, stop at the sports museum inside the stadium to see memorabilia, photographs and uniforms of Brazil’s greatest football players.

Enjoy Rio’s vibrant nightlife as you listen to local music and watch samba dancers. While bar hopping, be cautious when traveling on foot. Leave valuables in your hotel room and either avoid crowds or travel within a small group including locals. The city is easy to navigate by bus during the day, but it’s best to avoid using this form of transport at night.

Where to stay in Rio de Janeiro

Copacabana
Copacabana

Copacabana

Known for Beaches, Sea, Sports

4.5/5(777 reviews)

Mingle with the local residents on one of the world’s most famous beaches, admire art deco buildings and party until dawn in this effervescent neighborhood.

Barra da Tijuca
Barra da Tijuca featuring a beach as well as a large group of people

Barra da Tijuca

Known for Festivals, Sunsets, Live Music

4.5/5(99 reviews)

Rio de Janeiro’s longest beach, a sprawling shopping mall and some of the city’s best seafood restaurants and bars await in this relaxed neighborhood.

Ipanema
Ipanema which includes markets as well as a large group of people

Ipanema

Known for Beaches, Sea, Sunsets

4.5/5(134 reviews)

Relax on beautiful beaches, shop for fashion and revel in the nightlife of one of Rio de Janeiro’s most stylish areas.

Zona Sul
Zona Sul featuring general coastal views and a sandy beach

Zona Sul

Known for Beaches, Sea, Nature

Zona Sul is highly notable for its stunning beaches, and you might want to visit top sights like Parque Henrique Lage and Ipanema Beach. See more of Alto da Boa Vista by jumping on the metro at Cantagalo Station or Siqueira Campos Station.

Leblon
Bedsides being the best beach spot in Leblon, Riba also has the best açai
trover photo by Mariah Assuncao

Leblon

Known for Beaches, Scenery, Sea

4.5/5(25 reviews)

Take time in Leblon to visit attractions like Leblon Beach and Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon. You might also appreciate the beaches, and you can hop on the metro at Antero de Quental Station to see more of the city.

Centro
Lapa which includes heritage architecture and a square or plaza

Centro

Known for Architecture, Culture, Cathedrals

3.5/5(92 reviews)

You might enjoy the museums while in Centro. National Library (Biblioteca Nacional) is a notable sight, and you can get around town at Carioca Station or Uruguaiana Station to see more of the city.

Top Hotels in Rio de Janeiro

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort
Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort
5 out of 5
Avenida Niemeyer 121 - Leblon, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
¥14,664
per night
Dec 22 - Dec 23

Nestled on the beach, this Leblon hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Vidigal Beach, Ipanema Beach, and Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden. Leblon Beach and Posto 12 ...

4.1/5Very Good! (831 reviews)

"Allways the best staff, best place, best service ❤"…"

Reviewed on Nov 14, 2019

Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort
Windsor Califórnia Hotel
Windsor Califórnia Hotel
4 out of 5
Avenida Atlantica, 2616, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro
¥9,946
per night
Dec 10 - Dec 11

Offering direct access to the beach, this Copacabana hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Copacabana Beach and Copacabana Fort. Sugar Loaf Mountain and Parque Henrique ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (304 reviews)

"Property is well maintained and in a great location right across from the beach."…"

Reviewed on Nov 21, 2019

Windsor Califórnia Hotel
Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro
Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro
5 out of 5
Avenida Atlantica, 1020, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
¥16,980
per night
Dec 6 - Dec 7

Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Copacabana Beach and Sugar Loaf Mountain. Museum of Modern Art and Rio de Janeiro Botanical ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (1,279 reviews)

"The view from my room and from the restaurant. Also, the location was perfect. The elevator security system is difficult for short stay guests to operate."…"

Reviewed on Nov 9, 2019

Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro

Popular things to do in Rio de Janeiro

Christ the Redeemer
Image for Christ the Redeemer

Christ the Redeemer

4.5/5(490 reviews)

This mountain rising out of the city center is most well known as the home of Rio’s iconic skyscraper-sized Jesus statue.

Sugar Loaf Mountain
Image for Sugar Loaf Mountain

Sugar Loaf Mountain

4.5/5(444 reviews)

Scale this mountain on foot or by cable car to see impressive views of Rio’s beaches, rain forests and its most famous statue.

Maracana Stadium
Image for Maracana Stadium

Maracana Stadium

4/5(197 reviews)

To truly appreciate Brazil’s obsession with “the beautiful game,” watch a match or take a guided tour of one of the world’s largest and most historic soccer stadiums.

Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden
Image for Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden

Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden

4.5/5(134 reviews)

Spend time exploring this historic botanical garden to see water features and sculptures, exotic plant species and endangered animals, including the black capuchin.

Museum of Modern Art
Image for Museum of Modern Art

Museum of Modern Art

4.5/5(56 reviews)

Explore the best of 20th-century Brazilian art and sample cutting-edge Brazilian cuisine at this bold 1950s modernist gallery on the edge of Rio’s Guanabara Bay.

Arcos da Lapa
Image for Arcos da Lapa
trover photo by JessDems

Arcos da Lapa

4/5(90 reviews)

Arcos da Lapa is a well-known landmark worth seeing in Rio de Janeiro. Wander the beautiful beaches or discover the area's mountain views.

Top activities in Rio de Janeiro

Sunset Experience - Christ, Selarón and Sunset at Sugarloaf
Image for Sunset Experience - Christ, Selarón and Sunset at Sugarloaf

Sunset Experience - Christ, Selarón and Sunset at Sugarloaf

¥9,998

Spend an afternoon visiting Rio's most incredible sights on a tour that shows off the great views and grand attractions around Guanabara Bay.

Full Day in Rio - Corcovado, Sugar Loaf & City Tour with BBQ
Image for Full Day in Rio - Corcovado, Sugar Loaf & City Tour with BBQ

Full Day in Rio - Corcovado, Sugar Loaf & City Tour with BBQ

¥11,302

Visit the best of Rio in a single day: Christ the Redeemer by Train, Sugarloaf Mountain, Selarón Steps, Maracanã Stadium, Sambadrome, and Metropolitan Cathedral, and lunch at Brazilian steakhouse. Includes roundtrip transportation.

Pre or Post Cruise - Rio By Night: Dinner and Samba Show
Image for Pre or Post Cruise - Rio By Night: Dinner and Samba Show

Pre or Post Cruise - Rio By Night: Dinner and Samba Show

¥11,660

For this memorable evening out in the exciting city of Rio, you will be transported to one of the city's popular churrascarias (barbeque restaurant), where your tastebuds will be treated to a sampling of some of the country's famous barbequed meats.

Museum of Tomorrow and AquaRio Combo Tour
Image for Museum of Tomorrow and AquaRio Combo Tour

Museum of Tomorrow and AquaRio Combo Tour

¥8,895

Visit one most popular attractions in Rio de Janeiro with this combination 5-hour small-group tour of the Museum of tomorrow, and Rio de Janeiro Aquarium (the biggest of South America). Enjoy skip-the-line entry for each sight and a professional guide to enhance your experience.

Brazilian Cooking Class
Image for Brazilian Cooking Class

Brazilian Cooking Class

¥9,137

Taste some of the most locally beloved Brazilian dishes and discover why so many food connoisseurs flock to Rio during a 4-hour traditional cooking class. Learn how to serve delicious Brazilian food with master chefs walking you through each step of the way—no experience necessary.

Rio de Janeiro Jeep Tour to Favela La Rocinha & Tijuca Forest
Image for Rio de Janeiro Jeep Tour to Favela La Rocinha & Tijuca Forest

Rio de Janeiro Jeep Tour to Favela La Rocinha & Tijuca Forest

¥10,877

Jeep Excursion to Favela ́s Rocinha and Tijuca Forest in Rio de Janeiro Visit the Tijuca rain forest and gain insider insight into one of Rio de Janeiro's favelas (the local term for shantytowns) during this 4-hour tour.

Reviews of Rio de Janeiro

4.4

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
418
5 - Excellent 54.712041884816756%
4 - Good
262
4 - Good 34.29319371727749%
3 - Okay
65
3 - Okay 8.507853403141361%
2 - Disappointing
13
2 - Disappointing 1.7015706806282722%
1 - Terrible
6
1 - Terrible 0.7853403141361257%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 19, 2019

One of the most unique cities in the world.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 16, 2019

A Must Go Destination! It truly is the land of the beautiful, with amazing food, and breathtaking views! Simply an amazing experience including visiting the Favelas!

3/5 - Okay

NeilS

Nov 9, 2019

We were only there one day but enjoyed it.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 9, 2019

Very dangerous

5/5 - Excellent

RobsonGuimaraes

Nov 1, 2019

Brazilodge, the best!!!

4/5 - Good

dennis

Oct 31, 2019

Good few days, once in a life time trip, maybe would come back for carnival.

Other places like Rio de Janeiro

Salvador
Image for Salvador
Salvador
Sao Paulo
Image for Sao Paulo
Sao Paulo
Cartagena
Image for Cartagena
Cartagena
Lima
Image for Lima
Lima