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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Sugarloaf Mountain (Pao de Acucar)

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

Located on the coast of the southeastern corner of Rio de Janeiro, Sugarloaf Mountain (Pão de Açúcar) resides within forests, water and hills at the edge of Guanabara Bay. Rock climbers conquer the mountain using appropriate gear, but most visitors take the glass-sided cable car to the top. Originally built in 1912, the cable car transports 65 visitors per trip and offers panoramic views the entire way.

Sugarloaf Mountain offers remarkable views of nearby beaches, local rain forests, adjacent hills and the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue. The lush rain forests provide a sharp contrast against the surrounding granite hills. Historians attribute the mountain’s name to the 16th-century practice of molding sugar into a cone-like shape. These “sugar loaves” were common during the peak of Brazil’s sugarcane trade.  

The mountain draws crowds year-round, but the best times to visit are each day early in the morning and 90 minutes before sunset. Make sure you have clear skies and bring your camera to capture Rio’s scenic beauty from 1,300 feet (396 meters) above sea level. Right beneath you is Copacabana Beach, which connects to Ipanema Beach at its southern end. To the west, enjoy views of Rio’s iconic member of the “New Seven Wonders of the World,” the Christ the Redeemer statue.

Cable cars depart every 20 minutes from morning until evening. Before reaching the top, you will board two cable cars. One stops at Morro da Urca and the other stops at the peak, Pão de Açúcar. Be sure to check with the ticketing office if you visit during major holidays as cable-car trips typically close around noon on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve and close completely on Christmas and New Year’s Day. If visiting between December and March, be prepared for the cable car to close early on weekend evenings to accommodate seasonal performances.  

Access to Sugarloaf Mountain is from Praia Vermelha at the southern entry to Guanabara Bay. You can walk to Guanabara Bay from nearby Copacabana Beach, or use boat or bus if you are coming from farther afield.


Guide to Exploring around Sugar Loaf Mountain


Best Lodging Options Near Sugar Loaf Mountain

See all 2,639 Properties near Sugar Loaf Mountain
Hotel Atlântico Rio ¥1,990
Hotel Atlântico Rio

Hotel Atlântico Rio

Rua Xavier da Silveira, 112, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
     
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Copacabana, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Rua Barata Ribeiro and Avenida Atlantica. Copacabana Beach and Ipanema Beach are also within 1 mi (2 km). Cantagalo Station is only a 2-minute walk and Siqueira Campos Station is 14 minutes.

    Hotel Astoria Palace ¥3,411
    Hotel Astoria Palace

    Hotel Astoria Palace

    Av. Atlantica 1866, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Offering direct access to the beach, this Copacabana hotel is in the entertainment district and within a 5-minute walk of Copacabana Beach and Avenida Atlantica. Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Fort are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 25 minutes by foot.

      Windsor Leme Hotel ¥7,113
      Windsor Leme Hotel

      Windsor Leme Hotel

      Avenida Atlantica 656, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is steps from Guanabara Bay, Copacabana Beach, and Avenida Atlantica. Sugar Loaf Mountain and Ipanema Beach are also within 3 mi (5 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 17 minutes by foot and Siqueira Campos Station is 27 minutes.

        Arena Copacabana Hotel ¥7,508
        Arena Copacabana Hotel

        Arena Copacabana Hotel

        Av Atlantica 2064 - Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Copacabana, this beachfront hotel is on the boardwalk, just steps from Copacabana Beach and Avenida Atlantica. Praia do Leme and Chacrinha State Park are also within 15 minutes. Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 8 minutes by foot and Siqueira Campos Station is 10 minutes.

          Hotel Atlântico Prime ¥1,853
          Hotel Atlântico Prime

          Hotel Atlântico Prime

          Rua do Resende 87, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Lapa, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Arcos da Lapa and Catedral de Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro. Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro and Municipal Theater are also within 1 mi (2 km). Cinelandia Station is 16 minutes by foot and Presidente Vargas Station is 16 minutes.

            Hotel Atlantico Praia ¥2,534
            Hotel Atlantico Praia

            Hotel Atlantico Praia

            Avenida Atlantica 1456, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Rio Sul Shopping Mall, Pasmado Viewpoint, and Sugar Loaf Mountain. Vermelha Beach is 2 mi (3.2 km) away. Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 7 minutes by foot and Siqueira Campos Station is 17 minutes.

              Arena Leme Hotel ¥9,617
              Arena Leme Hotel

              Arena Leme Hotel

              Av. Atlântica 324, Rio de Janeiro
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Praia do Leme, Copa D'Or Hospital & Medical Center, and Sugar Loaf Mountain. Museum of Modern Art and Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden are also within 6 mi (10 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 20 minutes by foot.

                Leme Charmoso
                Leme Charmoso

                Leme Charmoso

                R. Gustavo Sampaio 98, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Copacabana, this apartment building is steps from Guanabara Bay, Copacabana Beach, and Avenida Atlantica. Sugar Loaf Mountain and Ipanema Beach are also within 3 mi (5 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 20 minutes by foot.