Rio de Janeiro Travel Guide!
After years of returning back to Brazil, returning back to Rio, I always have a sense of nostalgia but also excitement at what new place or activity there is to experience! That is the majesty of Brazil. Its grandeur of diversity! Its balance between the classics and contemporaneity. For this, here is my latest list of 10 things to experience, a taste of where to go, if you want to savour the real Rio, take a look!
1. How can you go to Rio without going to the beach? Try Ipanema instead of Copacabana. Between Porto 8 and 9 it’s so fun. I usually stay at paranga Denise. Always stay close to brazilians. They are really helpful and protective. Don’t carry bags at the beach, don’t leave them unattended and DONT WEAR ANY jewellery or watches during your trip.
2. The diversity is enthralling! Brazil has the biggest Japanese population outside of Japan therefore really good Sushi. Try:
- Sushi Leblon http://www.sushileblon.com/ Address: Rua Dias Ferreira, 256– Leblon
- Zuka http://www.zuka.com.br/ Address: Rua Dias Ferreira, 233b – Leblon (Both Zuka and Sushi Leblon are in the same street – Rua Dias Ferreira – a really trendy street in the neighbourhood of Leblon)
3. Apres dinner? One of my favourites… for a drink and aperitif
- Palaphita Kitsch (for a delicious caipirinha whilstwatching the sunset in Lagoa) http://www.palaphitakitch.com.br Address: Avenida Epitácio Pessoa, s/nº – quiosque 20 – Parque do Cantagalo – Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas
4. Parque Lage for a coffee / lunch or brunch is a MUST. A BREATHTAKING PLACE and so close to Jardim Botanic which is amazing too!
5. Afternoon bite? Confeitaria Colombo in Centro R. Gonçalves Dias, 32 – Centro, Rio de Janeiro – RJ, 20050-030, Brazil.
6. Whilst visiting Rio one should not simply stay in Rio no matter how full of life it is! iIf you have some extra time definitely book a two day trip to Paraty. It’s a very small colonial town with beautiful beaches! You get there with luxurious buses – book your tickets online!
7. You will find plenty of street food in Rio and plenty of juice bars. Do it like the locals and visit one or all of them! Ask for Acai with banana (a juice that has equal vitamins as a meal). You need to try a Feijoada dish, brigadeiros for sweets, pao de queijo for something quick. Experiencing Rio comes through tasting it dishes and meeting the people who prepare them.
8. For local shopping, you will discover Osklen, Ipanema, Melissa and HAVAIANAS. Suitable for Hot weather.
9. You must also visit Rua Garcia d’Avila .. you will find some nice yet chill restaurants here. Try Via Sete restaurant.
10. Enjoy this AMAZING country!!!!!! Brazilians are very helpful so don’t hesitate to ask them for directions. Always take taxis at night and try to fit in with them. Don’t be afraid. Stay close to them and in busy areas.
This is an extra one, because its a must!
* Do the hike up to Pedra Bonita .. get a taxi and ask them to drop you there and you will few people taking a path in the jungle and hiking up.. It’s about an hour hiking up to the top.. and definitely one of the best views to get of the city. Pick a clear day but avoid super hot temperatures. You can also paraglide by the taxi drop off.