What makes Rio de Janeiro so attractive?

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. By Packing my Suitcase

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 de Janeiro, Brazil. By Packing my Suitcase

 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. By Packing my Suitcase

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.

About Allane

A Brazilian living in Germany. Married to W. mommy to a baby girl and a Golden Retriever. Traveler, writer, aspiring photographer, diver, wine appreciator, Formula 1 fan, avid reader of historical and young adult fictions books. City girl, nature lover, believer of a better world, one little change at a time.

  • It’s the first place anybody thinks of when they think ‘Brasil’. Have to get there one day! (me)

    • True isnt it? Yes you have to visit Rio, its an amazing city…go and stay as long as you can 😀

  • Never been anywhere in South America, but I am currently planning my trips to Brazil, Peru, Chile, and possibly Ecuador (for Galapagos) for early 2015! Rio is unquestionably the highlight for me, apart from maybe Machu Picchu. Sugar Loaf Mountain, Copacabana, the Maracana stadium, Christ the Redeemer, and some good botanical gardens inside the city are all reasons to come here! Your post has got me more and more excited! 😀

    • wow!! That to hear that, make sure you do go to the Galapagos Islands, its heaven!! Im very happy you liked the post and it has inspired you even more for you trip! Let me know if you need any help, I will be more than happy to help you 😀

  • Wow beautiul post. You know for some reason Rio has always fascinated me. May be the liveliness we always see in the photos, beautiful beaches and ofcourse smiling people.
    I definitely wish to go there one day!!!

    Much love
    Aanchal

    • Hi Aanchal thank you for the lovely comment and for your visit! Yes Rio is a fascinating city, I love going there again and again, you can never get enough of the city. I hope you make it there sometime soon 😀

  • Brazil has always been high on my list of places to go. I even dreamed of going there as a kid. I doubt I’ll be able to make it there during my current trip to South America. But I know I’ll get there someday. It looks absolutely stunning and but from this post it seems like it has so much more to offer than just beauty and beaches. Great post 🙂

    • Ohhh I hope you can make it there one day. Maybe is also a good idea to spare enough time to travel around the country, because Brazil is too big and there are lots of amazing places to see! Im glad you liked the post…thank you 😀 yes Rio has a lot to offer, more than most people think, and there some amazing small beach towns around it, like Angra dos Reis and Buzios 😀

  • Nice post! Rio de Janeiro is on my wish list and I hope I can visit it sooner rather than later!

  • I am not surprised Rio is a beautiful city. What gorgeous pictures, and there is a cartoon-movie called Rio too 😀 I’ve always wanted to go to Rio, so maybe one day I will go there. I didn’t know there was such a thing as a Brazilian barbeque, haven’t even seen this in Australia. I’m sure it’s not just sausages and meat patties over a grill. Also, didn’t know that there were coconuts in Rio. It sounds like a good place to relax, relax by the beach and if you get bored, you get up and look at the architecture 🙂

    • hahaaha yes the cartoon is really cute! I love it 😀 Yes, there is Brazilian barbecue and its with reaaaal meat, not sausages or burgers. And there are coconuts in most parts of the country, probably not in the south because is colder there, but I think they still get them from the other states. Yes Rio is a very relaxing place and there are many many fun things to do there, besides the people there are really cool and relaxed 😀 I hope you can make it there sometime, you will love it…the food too 😀

  • The first photo is truly a winner. Amazing city, love the view from the pictures. It is still on my bucket list to visit – have to organise a long holiday to visit Brazil! Great post with complete info of what to do there – thanks and good luck for Brazil Team tonight!

    • HI Indah!! Thank you! Yes, you have to plan a long holiday there, since you have Rio and Fernando de Noronha to visit so far! You should also include Arraial do Cabo, I hear is amazing to dive there and is very close to Rio 😀 and thank you, good luck for you and the orange fever too 😀

  • I need to get over there!

  • Brazil and Rio are definitely somewhere we want to go to… Maybe for the Olympics! Thank you for cementing that desire even more with your post and great photos!

    • You’re welcome!! Thank you 😀 Im very happy to know that now you have even more desire to visit Brazil and Rio, I hope you can make it there during the Olympics 🙂

  • Wow such fabulous photos!

  • Beautiful photos and interesting information! I would love to visit Rio (and the rest of South America) some day. Seems like there is so much to do!

    • Thanks for stopping by, Im glad you liked it! And I hope you can make it to Brazil and the rest of South America in a near future! There is indeed loooots to do there, Im sure you will love it 😀

  • I absolutely LOVED Rio! It has pretty much everything anyone can want from a destination – city, beach, mountains, rural life…the list goes on. I tried to do and see as much as I could when we were there but I wasn’t well for a few days plus the World Cup kind of got in the way! So I would love to return to Rio when there are less people and I see more of this beautiful city 🙂

    • Hi Ayla, it makes me really happy to know you loved Rio!! Im so sorry you weren’t feeling well. I really hope you go back there someday and stay longer to visit the city more relaxed 😀 thank you so much for the comment and for stopping by!

  • Tim

    I lived in Rio for a brief period back several years ago. What a remarkably beautiful city. I loved it for its beaches, climate, music, dance, friendliness and good humor. I was on the beach one morning in Copacabana and I asked a girl why it was that Brazilians had so many tattoos. Her response which changed my attitude completely was this. “We Brazilians love the beach and wear not so many clothes. The pictures on our skin are a type of clothing”…and then she smiled.

    • Hi Tim, thank you for the comment and for stopping by 🙂 how interesting that you lived in Rio for a while, then you must have learned a little of Portuguese right? How cool. Hahaha, I dont know if we Brazilians have so many tattoos because of that, what I think is that people notice more that we have tattoos for the fact that we use less clothes because of the weather. People from other countries also have lots of tattoos, we just dont see them because they are wearing winter jackets most of the year 😀 go figure hahaha. But interesting point! My father didnt like it when I got my first tattoo hahaha

  • Shikha (whywasteannualleave)

    I went for the first time this year & I just loved it for all of these reasons! The views from the vintage points and I really found selaron steps lovely! I would also go back there for the churros alone! 😀

    • hahaaha the churros? How nice… that you liked them!! Churros are really good in Brazil, thats true! Thank you for stopping by 😀

  • Brazil is my next destination and this post is just the perfect thing I needed to read. thank you 🙂

    • Really?? Awesome!! I hope it helped you somehow! Where are you going in Brazil and for how long are you staying? Let me know if you need any tips, Im happy to help!

      • Well I know I would land in Rio and I have some Brazilian friends I met In Asia I hope I can meet there 🙂 let’s stay in touch then

  • Beautiful captures! I really like the 2nd pic.. 🙂

  • I read this post completely concerning the resemblance of most up-to-date and previous technologies,
    it’s remarkable article.

  • Yaaay awesome Charlotte! I’m happy to know that you had a great time in Rio and agree with me 😀
    I will take a look at your post!!