Cidade Maravilhosa, the marvellous city, is how Rio de Janeiro is known locally. It’s easy to see why. Rio de Janeiro in our mind is the most beautiful city in the world and an essential part of any Brazil holiday.
Standing on top of the city’s two iconic attractions, Corcovado and Sugar Loaf mountain, you will be sure to agree with us as the views on a clear day are nothing but spectacular. The glistening Guanabara Bay provides an outline to the city and its many beaches from the famous Copacabana and Ipanema to many lesser known beaches to the south of the city.
The city has a huge amount to offer the visitor even if you are not a fan of the beach with the historical centre offering a variety of museums and churches to entertain you for many a day. The arty areas of Lapa and Santa Teresa provide a crumbling reminder of Rio’s Portuguese colonial past whereas the Botanical Gardens allow you a peaceful escape from the holiday crowds.
The newly redeveloped port area features the aquarium as well as the strikingly futuristic Museum of Tomorrow. Great museums can be found elsewhere too, including over in Niteroi where you will encounter the Oscar Niemeyer designed Museum of Modern Art, shaped similar to the USS Enterprise from Star Trek.
Yes, is the short answer. Rio de Janeiro suffers from bad press and you tend to only hear of negative stories which is different to the experience when you visit. There are certainly problems but these generally affect the local community rather than tourists. There are no go areas and so we don’t send our clients there. It is of course a big city and with it comes problems associated with all big cities so we always advise clients to carry only what they can afford to lose, leave the rest in the hotel safe, and be conscious of who is around you when you are out and about, using common sense. Virtually all of our clients worry about visiting the city prior to travel however then come away loving the city and not knowing what they were worried about. Go, you’ll love it.
If you only once get the chance to visit Rio on a holiday to Brazil try and do so during carnival.
Most shops and museums shut down for the five days before Shrove Tuesday but this is when the city really comes alive in a non-stop party. We are specialists at arranging holidays to Rio carnival so see our section on carnival for more information.
The dates of carnival change every year as to when Easter falls.
Outside of carnival, summer is generally coincides with the Northern Hemisphere winter. Summer is hot, often with temperatures reaching 40c and expect the odd shower during this time too.
Rio de Janeiro’s summer coincides with the Northern Hemisphere’s winter and Rio’s summer is usually dry and sunny with temperatures in the mid 20c’s.
Whether you visit Rio during carnival or not, be sure to make a visit to this incredible city a highlight of your holiday to Brazil.