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.
Beaches, Museums and Nature
This mountain rising out of the city center is most well known as the home of Rio’s iconic skyscraper-sized Jesus statue.
Scale this mountain on foot or by cable car to see impressive views of Rio’s beaches, rain forests and its most famous statue.
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.
Spend time exploring this historic botanical garden to see water features and sculptures, exotic plant species and endangered animals, including the black capuchin.
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.
A lavish Italian villa, hidden caves, miles of trails and views to the statue Christ the Redeemer await at this park at the base of Rio’s Corcovado Mountain.
Spend an afternoon visiting Rio's most incredible sights on a tour that shows off the great views and grand attractions around Guanabara Bay.
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.
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.
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.
Spend a full day soaking up the sights of Rio de Janeiro during a city tour. Begin with a train ride to see the Christ the Redeemer Statue atop Corcovado Mountain, followed by a panoramic (external) visit to the Maracanã stadium and additional stops at the Sambódromo (Sambadrome), the Metropolitan Cathedral, and the Selarón Steps.
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.