Rio de Janeiro is the most visited destination in Brazil when it comes to the purpose of tourism and leisure. In 2013 approximately 5,6 million of foreigners visited Rio, and around 1 million of tourists (national and international) are expected this year only during the month of the World Cup.
There is no doubt that Rio de Janeiro is one of the top destinations in the world, and the center of attentions in Brazil. The city is always on the news, travel magazines, and mentioned whenever Carnival is the topic. But what makes Rio so attractive? Is it only the beaches? The carnival?
Rio de Janeiro is a city of contrasts, where you will find the sea on one side and the mountains on the other; where you will notice fancy buildings and the biggest favela in the world – Rocinha – one beside the other; where in summer you can experience 40C while in winter 18C; it can be very rainy and very sunny; it is where sea, lakes and rivers share the same landscape.
In Rio you can enjoy the beaches and all the fancy shopping malls during the day. At night you can go party in one of its famous clubs or dance funk in the Morro dos Irmãos at a famous place called Vidigal. In the city you have plenty of options to appreciate traditional Brazilian food, like the delicious Churrasco (Brazilian barbecue) in one of the Churrascarias; or drink as much Caipirinhas, Caipiroscas or Brazilian beer you want in one of the several cool Bars around the city.
In Rio you also have the chance to experience the carnival even when its not carnival, by watching a Samba School rehearsal; to watch a game at the famous Maracanã; to make a tour around the Rocinha favela; to do hang-glide off the Pedra Bonita; to take a little trip on-board a helicopter to see the amazing scenario from above; or simply enjoy a coconut water on São Conrado‘s beach to recharge your batteries or get tanned in Copacabana beach. Missing a morning walk at the Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas and the sunset at Arpoador would be a sin.
Rio is the favorite city of the Brazilian celebrities, where the famous novelas – soap operas – are filmed, where most of the international concerts happen and where the most expensive hotel of the country – the Copacabana Palace – is located. You will probably cross with a famous actress or actor on Ipanema beach without noticing, or you will probably see them working and being filmed somewhere around the city.
The once Brazilian capital and house of the country’s emperors Dom Pedro I and II, also carries the history of the colonial time at the historic city center. Rio de Janeiro is a very cultural city in comparison to many others in Brazil, theater and cinema are highly appreciated, as well as siting at a library, reading a good book and having a cup of traditional Brazilian coffee.
So yes, there are plenty of reasons for Rio de Janeiro being so attractive: the city is simply the combination of welcoming, charming, romantic, fun, natural beauty, history, originality, adventurous, relaxing, chic and there are still the Sugar Loaf and the Corcovado – where the Cristo Redentor is – to give a special touch! Need any more reasons? Visit Rio and feel for yourself the amazing atmosphere of Brazil’s most adored city.
Have you ever been to Rio? Are there any other reasons you would like to add?
* The most beautiful images found here were donated by my German friend K.H, a way better tourist in my country than I am! I gotta learn with her and make some cool photos next time I visit Rio. Danke K.