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Rio de Janeiro/Zona Sul

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The South Zone of Rio de Janeiro is where most tourists usually stay. Lots of hotels, from the fancy 5-stars like Copacabana Palace to hostels, are to be found in the neighborhoods of Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon, which also have three famous beaches, the latter two just being separated by the canal that drains the Lagoa into the sea.

A little closer to downtown, the Gloria, Catete, Botafogo, and Flamengo neighborhoods are pleasant and full of Carioca character.

Get in

Most parts of the Zona Sul are easily accessible by bus or metro from Centro or Zona Norte. Line 1 of the subway runs from the Zona Norte and Centro through most of the main neighborhoods of Zona Sul, as far as Praça General Osório at the east end of Ipanema.

Get around

By metrô

Line 1 services the Zona Sul as far west as Ipanema. The stops are:

  • Praça General Osório (in Ipanema) - for Ipanema Beach and Arpoador
  • Cantagalo (in Copacabana) - for Arpoador and the Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon ("Lagoa")
  • Siqueira Campos (in Copacabana) - for Copacabana beach, and coaches to Ipanema, Leblon, and Gávea
  • Cardeal Arcoverde (in Copacabana) - for Copacabana and Leme beaches and Rio Sul mall
  • Botafogo - for Botafogo beach, Botafogo Praia Shopping mall, and indie/art movie theaters; connection (integração) bus to Urca/Sugar Loaf and Jardim Botânico.
  • Flamengo - for Flamengo beach, Guanabara Palace
  • Largo do Machado (in Laranjeiras) - connection (integração) for a bus to the Christ the Redeemer statue on Corcovado
  • Catete - for the Museum of the Republic
  • Glória - for Nossa Senhora da Glória church

See

Sugar Loaf by night
  • Arpoador. The rocks at the Copacabana end of Ipanema beach. From here you can see Corcovado, the Sugar Loaf and much more. It is supposed to be the best place to watch the sunset from in Rio. Reputedly a bit dangerous so go there at weekends when there are lots of people and a few police around.
  • Botanical Garden (Jardim Botânico), Jardim Botânico, 21 3874-1808, [1]. Daily, 8AM-5PM. Planted in the 1800s, it is both a park and a scientific laboratory. It contains a huge collection of plants from all over the world, not only tropical ones. If you take the bus note that Jardim Botanico is also the name of a neighborhood and the road on which it is found so make sure you go all the way to the entrance. The gardens are well kept and very lush. Not far from the cafe, you are likely to hear swooshing sounds. Look up and you can see small monkeys swinging from tree to tree. $4.
  • Corcovado and Cristo Redentor, Rua Cosme Velho, 513 (Accessible only by Corcovado Tram from Cosme Velho, or by taxi), (21) 25581329, [2]. Tram 8.30am-7.00pm, leaving every 30 min. Capped by the 38m statue of Jesus Christ (Cristo Redentor), Corcovado has been the vantage point for countless picture postcards and travel posters through the ages. It provides a sweeping panorama, from the interior of Guanabara Bay to the north, to Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas (Rodrigo de Freitas' Lagoon) to the south. Corcovado can be reached by car or by train (R$ 36 return), on a ride through Floresta da Tijuca (Tijuca Forest), an island of subtropical rainforest in the middle of one of the most populous cities of South America. Trains can get very busy. Consider a lunchtime or afternoon trip when there are less coach parties. If you take a taxi to the top the driver may expect extra if you will not be using his taxi to go back down. You can also visit the forest, and see its many waterfalls and hiking trails. Most of the paths are well-marked, but you can get maps and guides as well. There are many hiking trails in the city, leading to places like Corcovado, Sugar Loaf and others, all with different views of the city. Return tram R$36.
  • Guanabara Palace (Palácio Guanabara), Rua Pinheiro Machado - Laranjeiras. Former palace of the Imperial Princess, now the governor's office. Eclectic architecture. Not open to the public.
  • Gloria Church, Glória (Metrô Glória). Small but interesting church built in 1739. It is more correctly known as the Outeira da Gloria, outeira in Portuguese meaning “knoll” or small hill. The church was well sited to be seen by arriving sailors sailing into Guanabara Bay. The layout consists of two intertwined octagonal prisms. There are some interesting wooden engravings and tiles from Portugal. Best accessed by one of the world’s shortest funiculars from Rua do Russel. The ride is free. Nice views.
  • Glória Inlet (Enseada da Glória). A beautiful spot for a stroll along the bank of Guanabara Bay.
  • Largo do Boticário, Rua Cosme Velho (just up the hill from the Corcovado train station). A delightful square of well-preserved colonial style houses that date back to 1831.
  • Sugar Loaf Mountain (Pão de Açucar), Urca, [3]. One of the defining landmarks of the city. The cable cars take you up for R$ 44 to a breathtaking view of much of Zona Sul and the center, and also the city of Niteroi, just across Guanabara Bay. You can stop half way if the ride is too frightening. You can also walk up an unsigned trail to this point (ask for directions) and take the cable cars to the top for R$ 22. At the half way point, you can take a sightseeing helicopter trip, if you can afford it. The area is pretty secure, thanks to the various military institutions nearby.

Museums

  • Casa das Canoas, Estrada das Canoas 1246 - São Conrado, 21 3322 3581, [4]. Tues-Fri afternoons. The former residence of architect Oscar Niemeyer. Call in advance. Adults R$10..
  • Indian Museum, Rua das Palmeiras 55 - Botafogo. Tues-Fri 10AM-5:30PM, Sat-Sun 1PM-5PM. Focusing on the history of Native Brazilians, with many artifacts including a recently acquired home of the Umé culture. The gift shop has authentic handicrafts.
  • Museu do Açude, Estrada do Açude, 764 - Alto da Boa Vista (in the center of the Floresta da Tijuca park). Thurs-Sun 11AM-5PM. The former residence of one of the founders of the Modern Art Museum, this museum hosts a collection of items from the history of Portuguese rule, including furniture, kitchenware, and an array of azulejos, or Portuguese blue tiles. There are also separate collections of Oriental art and Brazilian pop art.
  • Museu Carmen Miranda, Av. Rui Barbosa (in Flamengo Park), 21 2299-5586, [5]. Here you'll find an amusing collection of photographs, posters, musical recordings, and, of course, gigantic fruity hats worn by the singing star. The building looks like an abandoned space capsule in the middle of the park.
  • Museum of Naïve Art, Rua Cosme Velho, 561 - Cosme Velho (west of Laranjeiras). The largest museum of its type in the world, with over 8000 pieces, representative of over 130 countries, with many pieces for sale.
  • Museum of the Republic (Museu da República), Rua do Catete 153 - Catete (Metrô Catete), 21 285-6350, [6]. The former presidential palace (1893-1960), now hosts a museum of recent history and nice gardens, with an adjacent art gallery and small theatre that occasionally shows free movies. One of main features is the room where president Getúlio Vargas shot himself in 1954.
  • Museu Villa-Lobos, Rua Sorocaba, 200 - Botafogo, 21 2266-1024 (), [7]. Mon-Fri 10AM-5:30PM. Heitor Villa-Lobos wrote about 1000 pieces and is considered one of the world's greatest composers. This small collection includes a number of personal items, musical instruments, pictures and hand-written work by Villa-Lobos. Free.
  • Oi Futuro (formerly Centro Cultural Telemar), Rua 2 de Dezembro 63 - Catete, 21 3131-3060, [8]. Formerly a telephone museum, it now hosts a fine gallery with temporary exhibitions of digital art or art with interactive medias; it is sponsored by the local phone company.
  • Instituto Moreira Salles (IMS), Rua Marques de Sao Vicente 476, Gavea - Rio de Janeiro, (21)3284 7400, [9]. Cultural Centre - at these days hosting a photo exhibition of the construction of Brasilia. Guided tours: Tue-Fr at 5pm, free entrance.

Parks

The rock of Gavea in the Tijuca Forest, the largest seaside chunk of rock in the world.
  • Flamengo Park (Parque do Flamengo), along the bay between Flamengo and Glória. 1.2 million square metres with broad walkways, Flamengo Beach, various monuments, and over 10,000 trees. To its north is the Museum of Modern Art (see Centro).
  • Tijuca National Park (Parque Nacional (Floresta) da Tijuca), (access from São Conrado and Tijuca), [10]. Situated just a few km north of the beach this mountainous subtropical forest is Brazil's smallest national park. It is largely hand-planted as much of the original forest was destroyed to make way for coffee plantations. Despite this it contains hundres of species, many of which are threatened with extinction. Corcovado is to the east of the park but if you really want to appreciate what the park has to offer you have to drive along some windy, hilly roads. It can be reached from Zona Norte via Rua Boa Vista, and from Sao Conrado in Zona Oeste.

Do

  • Cláudio Coutinho Trail (Pista Cláudio Coutinho), Urca (from the entrance to the Pão de Açucar cable car). This pleasant walk circles Urca Hill (Morro da Urca), and side trails lead to various points on the hill, offering lush vegetation, monkeys, and nice views of the bay.
  • Planetarium, Rua Vice-Governador Rubens Berardo, 100 – Gávea (Buses 125, 157, 170, 410, 432 or 435), 21 2529-2146‎, [11]. There are shows, mainly for kids, in the planetarium itself on weekends. These are targeted at different age groups so it is essential to check the age the show you plan to attend is for or you may get stuck with one that is totally unsuitable. From Weds to Fridays the space is also open without shows and there are around 60 hands-on scientific experiments to entertain kids.
  • Parque Lage, Rua Jardim Botânico 414 - Jardim Botânico, [12]. A small park, once a private mansion, where now a school of fine arts works. Contains some interesting plants and wildlife as well as strange and entertaining concrete structures. The park is the beginning of a path up Corcovado, through sub-tropical rain forest.
  • Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon (Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas). You can run, walk, skate or cycle the 7.5km around this freshwater lake and then retire to your luxurious Ipanema penthouse apartment, or just imagine it! Some have been known to swim in it although pollution levels are very high. Around Lagoa you can rent cycles, swan-shaped pedalos and, on the western side near where the helicopters take off, electric cars for younger kids.
  • Pedalboats (pedalinhos), on Lake Rodrigo de Freitas - Ipanema (near Cantagalo Park). Pedal the lake in these swan-shaped boats for 2-5 people. $R10/half hour.
  • Quadracycle, (at the north end of the lake). Take a ride around the lake on one of these unique contraptions, like a bicycle for two side-by-side riders under a little canopy. $R10/hour.
  • Sky Center Rio, São Conrado, 21 2437-4592 (), [13]. From the ramp atop Pedra Bonita, qualified instructors offer tandem flight courses in hang gliding, paragliding, and ultralight. Wind conditions are typically safe and offer splendid views of the surrounding beaches and mountains. Helicopter rides also available.
  • Panoramic helicopter rides, [14]. These are noisy and drive Rio's residents mad as the helicopters circle the statue of Christ, but if you can live with that and can afford it, a helicopter trip is likely to be the most memorable experience of your visit to Rio. You can catch a copter at the first stage of the cable car ride up the Sugar Loaf or, alternatively, on the west edge of Lagoa. The basic trip takes in Sugar Loaf, Corcovado and Zona Sul (R$230 per person, minimum three people); longer, and more expensive, trips will take you to places such as the Maracana football stadium (R$350 per person). Prices quoted are web site prices. They may be negotiable on the day but no chance if a cruise ship is in town.

Beaches

Ipanema Beach

Perhaps the best thing to do in Rio is nothing, while sitting on its glorious beaches. Of the two most famous, Copacabana and Ipanema, the former gets a bit more crowded (perhaps that will change now the Metro has been extended to Ipanema). Both have spectacular mountains to the side -- Sugar Loaf to the east of Copacabana, and Dois Irmãos ("The Two Brothers") to the west of Ipanema. Though famous, the water at South Zone beaches may not always be clean enough for swimming. Water quality goes down after heavy rain that washes pollution out to the sea-- it is advisable to ask your lifeguard. Leblon and Ipanema are usually OK; Copacabana sometimes has problems, especially after very rainy days. The seas at Leblon and Ipanema are also somewhat rougher than at Copacabana. Even when they appear calm this can be deceptive. A common problem is when swimmers venture out beyond the breakers and then cannot get back. There are lifeguards at all of the ``postos´´ and surfers can be relied on to help out swimmers in trouble. There is also a rescue helicopter that pulls people out of the water in a net. But you don´t really want to suffer the embarassment of this happening to you so even if you are a strong swimmer, take care!

Along Copacabana and Ipanema-Leblon there are ´´postos´´ (lifeguard watchtowers with toilets and changing facilities). Posto 6 is unaccountably missing, although it is generally considered to be opposite Rua Francisco Sá when Cariocas arrange to meet on the beach. Although beaches are often considered a plural, democratic space, there are still some informal (and not too strict) "social area" divisions.

Beginning at Glória and winding outward toward the south and southwest, the beaches are:

On Guanabara Bay

Beaches on the bay are generally less popular, as they are relatively narrow and with smaller waves.

  • Ramos - a popular beach where the government built an artificial pool on the sand (piscinão). This area is not recommended for foreigners to visit.
  • Flamengo
  • Botafogo
  • Urca
  • Vermelha

Oceanic

  • Leme - East of Copacabana, and somewhat less crowded.
  • Copacabana - Among the most famous beaches in the world, Copacabana attracts many tourists, both foreign and national. In summer, there are occasional free evening concerts of big name acts which draw huge crowds.
  • Arpoador - Between Copacabana and Ipanema.
  • Ipanema - The main beach for the middle-class, and specifically the Posto 9 section (watchtower #9) is preferred by left-wingers, intellectuals, artists, journalists and similar beach-goers. You can easily walk into a politician or someone famous here. The area close to the Farme de Amoedo street in Ipanema is known to attract the gay crowd of the city, who show off openly their sexuality.
  • Leblon - West of Ipanema and similar, but less crowded.
  • São Conrado - On the other side of the Dois Irmãos mountain west of Leblon, this beach is popular with middle class people and favela dwellers alike. Good surfing and hang-gliding opportunities.

Samba schools

  • Acadêmicos da Rocinha, Rua Bertha Lutz, 80 - São Conrado, 21 3205 3318, [15].

Learn

  • Cook in Rio, Rua Ronald Carvalho 154 - Copacabana, 21 8761-3653 (), [16]. Daily 11AM-4PM. Learn some of the most traditional and delicious Brazilian meals and drinks, like cassava sticks, shrimp moqueca, batida de coco, caipirinhas and pé de moleque peanut brittle. Ideal for cloudy or rainy weather. R$120.

Buy

  • Brasil & Cia, Rua Maria Quitéria 27 - Ipanema, 21 2267-4603, [17]. An arts and crafts shop where the biggest concern is to keep the Brazilian identity in all that is sold, with many unique items. They also support artists who didn’t have any kind of art education and have difficulty selling their art.
  • Hippie Fair, Praça Osário - Ipanema. Every Sunday. Here you will find everything from soapstone Redentor statues to swizzle sticks carved with Amazonian birds. There are several vendors selling the same thing so you can have fun bargaining.
  • Hype Babalonia, Rua Jardim Botânico 971, Gávea (at the Jockey Club race trackn). Saturdays and Sundays 14:00-22:00. This market has some more upscale merchandise and you will find fewer tourists. It is a place where middle class Cariocas do some bargain shopping.
  • Modern Sound, Rua Barata Ribeiro 502 - Copacabana, [18]. One of Brazil's biggest music shops. Sometimes there's also live music in the café.
  • Pé de Bói, Rua Ipiranga 55 - Laranjeiras, 21 2285-4395, [19]. Mon-Fri 9AM-7PM, Sat 9AM-1PM. One of the best places to get authentic local handicrafts. A lovely store with many great gift ideas. There are two floors, the first full of items for sale, such as pieces made from wood, ceramic and fibre, fit to decorate any living room space. The second floor is where they sometimes have art exhibits, usually related to Brazilian history, culture or customs from various regions that are distinctly scattered throughout the country.

Books

  • Livreria Argumento, Rua Dias Ferreira 417 - Leblon, 21 2239-5294. Mon-Fri 9AM-12:30AM, Sat-Sun 10AM-12:30AM. Good selection of English books. Popular with local intellectuals and artists.
  • Livraria Letras & Expressões, Ataulfo de Paiva 1292 - Leblon, 21 2511 5085, [20]. Decent English section, and a good selection of international magazines. Café with internet access.
  • Livraria Letras & Expressões, Rua Visconde de Pirajá 276, 21 2521 6110, [21]. Good bookshop with a popular Cafe Ubaldo on the first floor that serves coffee and pastries. Small internet cafe.
  • Livraria da Travessa, Rua Visconde de Pirajá 572 - Ipanema, 21 3205 9002, [22]. Daily 12AM-12PM. Nice bookshop which allows you to choose a book to peruse while you sip coffee in the café. Small section of foreign-language books.

Shopping malls

  • Botafogo Praia Shopping, Praia de Botafogo 400 - Botafogo, 21 3171-9559, [23]. Has a food court with a panoramic view.
  • Rio Plaza Shopping, Rua General Severiano 97 - Botafogo, 21 2542-5693, [24].
  • Shopping Cassino Atlântico, Av. Atlântica 4240 - Copacabana, 21 2523-8709, [25].
  • Shopping Leblon, Av. Afrânio de Melo Franco, 290, Leblon, [26]. A new and sophisticated mall with 200 stores, 4 cinema screens and a food court that looks out on the Lagoa.
  • São Conrado Fashion Mall, Estrada da Gávea, 899 - São Conrado, 21 2111-4444, [27]. High-end mall with 140 stores including brand names like Diesel, Fendi, and Emporio Armani.
  • Shopping Rio Sul, Rua Lauro Müller, 116 - Botafogo (just north of the tunnel from Botafogo to Copacabana), 21 3527-7257, [28]. The largest mall in the Zona Sul, with 4 floors and 450 stores.
  • Shopping da Gávea, Rua Marquês de São Vicente 52 - Gávea, 21'' 2294-1096, [29]. 200 stores and a movie theater.

Eat

Budget

  • Cervantes, Av Prado Junior 335B - Copacabana. Famous for making their classic filet mignon and pineapple sandwich in the blink of an eye.

Mid-range

  • Benkei, Avenida Henrique Dumont 71 - Ipanema, )21 2540-4829, [30]. A popular all-you-can-eat sushi bar.
  • Cantina Donanna, Rua Domingos Ferreira 63-B - Copacabana. Italian cuisine. $R10-20.
  • Casa da Feijoada, Rua Prudente Morais 10 - Ipanema, 21 2247-2776‎, [31]. Serves nothing but traditional, authentic Brazilian feijoada
  • Filé de Ouro, Rua Jardim Botânico 731 - Jardim Botânico, 21 2259-2396. A good alternative to churrascarias, this steakhouse is simple and cozy. During the weekends there are usually big lines, but the steak is delicious. Try Filé à Oswaldo Aranha, with toasted garlic.
  • Gula Gula, Rua Anibal de Mendonça 132 - Ipanema, 21 2259-3084. A trendy restaurant with excellent salads, main dishes and deserts. $R20-35.
  • Carretão, Rua Siqueiro Campos 23 - Copacabana, [32]. Good-value rodizio-- all-you-can-eat salad and barbecue. R$24-31.
  • Nam Thai, Rua Rainha Guilhermina 95 B - Leblon, 21 2259-2962. Fairly authentic and very popular Thai restaurant. Reservations essential at weekends. R$50-100.
  • New Natural, Rua Barão do Torre 173 - Ipanema. A good per-kilo restaurant. It is attached to a whole foods shop and has a good buffet selection, including sushi.

Splurge

  • Manekineko, Rua Dias Ferreira 410 - Leblon, 21 2540-7641. Sushi.
  • Marius Carnes, Avenida Atlântica 290 - Leme, 21 2104-9000‎, [33]. Arguably the best churrascaria in town.
  • Restaurante Monchique, Av. Nossa Senhora de Copacabana 796 - Copacabana, 21 2548-5140, [34]. Very good all-you-can-eat rodizio.
  • Porcão, Rua Barão da Torre 218 - Ipanema, 21 3202–9150, [35]. Churrasco restaurant with an attractive salad bar with sushi and prepared seafood dishes as well. R$54.
  • Sushi Leblon, Rua Dias Ferreira 256 - Leblon, 21 2512-7830.
  • Zazá Bistrô, [36]. A trendy, sexy and exotic place with great South Asian dishes. Good to go as a couple.
  • Zuka, Rua Dias Ferreira 233 - Leblon, 21 3205-7154‎, [37]. Hip and contemporary restaurant where chef Ludmila creates many original recipes.

Drink

Bars

  • Academia da Cachaça, Rua Conde de Bernadotte 26 - Leblon, [38]. With over 500 varieties, this is the place to start your studies of Brazil's national drink.
  • Bip Bip, Rua Almirante Gonçalves 50D - Copacabana, 021 2267-9696. 7PM-1AM. This unpretentious and thoroughly un-touristy hole-in-the-wall botequim has been a favorite hang-out of top local musicians for decades and hosts regular live choro, samba, and bossanova performances.
  • Empório, Rua Maria Quitéria 37 - Ipanema. Popular with the younger crowd, that hangs out there to listen to DJs playing rock. Most of the crowd hangs out there because they are underage and can't get in the underground nightclubs. Gets packed with foreigners during summer.
  • Garota de Ipanema, Rua Vinicius de Moraes and Rua Prudente de Morais - Ipanema. There's no better place in Rio, Brazil, or even the world to watch bathing beauties stroll by than this cafe-bar, named after the song which according to legend was written here in 1962.
  • Bar Getúlio, Rua do Catete 146 - Catete (Metrô Catete). A pleasant enough bar immediately opposite the Museu da República in Catete, with plenty of tables outside. Not worth going out of your way to visit, but a decent place to go if you're in the area anyway. R$4/draught.
  • The Irish Pub, Rua Jangadeiros 14A, Praça General Osório (Ipanema), (21) 2513-3044. Best on Monday nights.
  • Saturnino Lounge & Bar, Rua Saturno de Brito, 50 (Jardim Botanico), 55 21 3874 0064, [39]. 6PM-2AM. Saturnino bar is perfect to go with friends or on a date, it’s very romantic for a candlelight dinner, and since it´s in an open area, you can see the moon. The ambient is very pleasant. There's a wide variety of different drinks and several options of appetizers that go from seafood to Japanese to burgers. They are open until late hours.
  • Shenanigans Irish Pub & Sports Bar, Rua Visconde de Pirajá 112A - Ipanema (on the Praça General Osório, Ipanema). Great any day but best on Wednesdays, this second-story Irish bar shows only a green awning at street level. Has imported beer(bottles and draught), American pool and a variety of sports on the big screen (NFL, NCAA, NHL, MLB, Football(soccer), Rugby and all local Brazilian sports.

Clubs

  • Clandestino, Rua Barata Ribeiro 111 - Copacabana, [40]. A European-style underground club: dark, dungeony and has a basement with a compact dance floor. What´s cool is that every Friday is Black Friday, which is when Brazilians and foreigners get down to hip-hop, Brazilian funk and other types of "black music". A great place to meet people. International beers and mixed drinks. They´ve got rock n´roll parties called Benflogin and also eletronic partiers like LBF and Partiers Angels.
  • Casa da Matriz, Rua Henrique Novaes 126 - Botafogo, [41]. An 18th century house turned into a two-floor nightclub. Because the walls of the original structure are all there, it is regarded as small. It has a weekly schedule that never changes. On Fridays there's a Brazilian music party (Brazooka) which is must-go in town. On Saturdays, there's rock on the first floor, with occasional appearances by local and even foreign bands (Paradiso). On Mondays has a very indie and prestigious rock party (Maldita), though never a really crowded one (except on Holidays).
  • Dama de Ferro, Rua Vinicius de Moraes 288 - Gávea, [42]. Electronic-only club, with two floors. Mostly has electro, minimal and house parties, with well-known DJs from Rio, Brazil and foreigners. A "must" with the electronic-loving community.
  • Fosfobox, Rua Siqueira Campos 143 - Copacabana, [43]. "Fosfo" as it's nicknamed by the goers has a strong Saturday rock-oriented party. Young, trendy crowd with djs playing mostly indie rock, discopunk and electro-rock. After 4 am it has a more electronic after-party. Different parties happen on Fridays, but it's usually electronic, with favorite genres being electro, house and minimal. Other nights are usually more electronic also, but has had Rock parties also on Thursdays. On Tuesdays there's a dub/reggaeton party.
  • Melt, Rua Rita Ludolf 47A - Leblon, 21 2249-9309, [44]. This popular upscale club sports an upscale bar downstairs and a dance club upstairs. Cover R$10-20.

Samba clubs

  • Casa Rosa, Rua Alice 550 - Laranjeiras, [45]. Fri-Sun. This place is quite special: back in the '60s, '70s and '80s it used to be a well known exclusive brothel, so that's why it is named Casa Rosa. The big pink eclectic style mansion was closed for several years and after a face-lift restoration now houses the officially known Centro Cultural Casa Rosa. Sundays are the best day to go there, especially because they do a great combination of serving the national dish of Brazil - Feijoada - with samba. There are always nice local musicians, and the atmosphere is laid back and friendly. Get there early since the music starts at 7PM and they stop serving the feijoada at around 9. Dress down. R$10 before 7PM, R$20 after 7PM; with feijoada, R$25.

Concert venues

  • Canecão, Av. Wenceslau Brás 215 - Leme (close to the tunnel that connects the Sugar Loaf to Copacabana), [46]. Apart from the really big names, who perform in Maracanã or on the beach, this is the main venue for Brazilian music and visiting stars.
  • Bar do Tom, Rua Adalberto Ferreira 32 - Leblon, 21 2274-4022. Hosts lesser names, mainly performing Brazilian music.
  • Vinicius, Rua Vinicius de Moraes 39 - Ipanema, )21 2523-4757, [47]. A small bar with nightly Bossa Nova shows.
  • Sala Cecilia Meireles, Largo da Lapa 47 - Lapa, 21 2224-3913, [48]. The city's main venue for classical performances.

Sleep

Budget

  • Ace Hostel, Rua Sao Clemente 23 - Botafogo, 21 2527-7452, [49]. Basic accommodations in large dormitories. Fabulous breakfast buffet. Excellent value. Right at the beach of Botafogo. From R$25.
  • Adventure Hostel, Rua Vinícius de Moraes - Ipanema, 21 3813-2726, [50]. Dorm-style hostel, a member of Hostelling International. From R$40.
  • Arpoador Inn, Rua Francisco Otaviano 177 - Ipanema, 21 2523-0060, [51]. Clean place, older interior, only a sidewalk apart from the beach. Singles/doubles from R$190/212.
  • Ananab Guesthouse Rio, Rua Alice 681 - Larajeiras, [52]. On a quiet street in a historical house built in 1917. Although it's location is in the middle of the city, you feel as if you are away from it all with views of the Statue of Christ the Reedemer, Sugar Loaf Mountain and the Atlantic Forest.
  • CabanaCopa Hostel, Travessa Guimarães Natal 12 - Copacabana (3 blocks from the beach), 21 3988 9912, [53]. A, unique hostel in the safest part of Copacabana. A large colonial house, fully renovated with spacious ensuite dorms, excellent social areas, great breakfast and friendly, helpful staff.
  • Casa Carioka Rio Hostel (Casa Carioka Rio Hostel), Rua Emilio Berla, 180 (Metrô Cantagalo), +55 (21) 3734 2235 (), [54]. A hostel with breakfast, kitchen, laundry, WiFi, security lockers and hot showers. Tours can also be arranged to the main tourist attractions. (,Rio de Janeiro Hostel)
  • Casa 6, Rua Barão da Torre 175, no.6 - Ipanema, 21 2247-1384, [55]. Has a double room and some dormitories. Dorms from R$40.
  • Che Legarto, Rua Anita Garibaldi 87 - Copacabana, 21 2556-2776, [56]. One of the most popular backpackers spots in Copacabana. Double/Dormbed cost R$90/R$32 per night for Hostelling International members and R$100/R$38 for non-members. Discounts for longterm stays or large groups..
  • Copinha Hostel, Rua Felipe de Oliveira, 11 - Copacabana, 21 2275-8520 (), [57]. checkin: 12pm; checkout: 11AM. 4- and 2- bed rooms, clean place. Friendly staff. Dorms from R$40.
  • El Misti Hostel Rio de Janeiro, Frederico Pamplona 20 - Copacabana (Next to Hospital Sao Lucas), 055 21 2547 0800 (), [58]. Free pickup from the airport, breakfast. Dorms from $13.
  • El Misti Hostel Botafogo, Praia Botafogo 462, no. 9 - Botafogo (in front of Botafogo Beach), 055 21 2226 0991 (), [59]. U$12.
  • Jucati, Rua Tenente Marones de Gusmão 85, 21 2547-5422, [60]. Well equipped apartments with free internet Wifi available. R$120.
  • One Love Hostel, Rua Barao da Torre 125 - Ipanema, 21 8809 3456, [61]. 4-8 bed dormitories. Breakfast buffet. From R$40.
  • Pousada Favelinha, Rua Almirante Alexandrino 2023 - between Laranjeiras and Santa Teresa (on the entrance road to the Vila Pereira da Silva favela), 21 8854-3401, [62]. Might be your choice if staying in a favela is your cup of tea.
  • Rio Backpackers, Travessa Santa Leocádia 38 - Copacabana, 21 2236-3803 (), [63].
  • Stone of a Beach, Rua Barata Ribeiro 111 - Copacabana, 21 3209 0348, [64]. Big, airy rooms and great common areas, is staffed with very cool young people who know everything that is going on. They have amazing New Year's and Carnaval events, as well as their own cool bar next door where they have live music.
  • Terasse Hostel, Rua Farme de Amoedo 35 - Ipanema (one block from the beach), 21 2247-6130, [65]. R$40 in dormitory, R$140 for a couple..
  • Walk On The Beach Hostel, Rua Dias da Rocha 85 - Copacabana, 21 2545 7500 (), [66].

Mid-range

  • Astoria Palace Hotel, Atlantica Avenue, 1886 - Copacabana, 21 2545-9550, [67]. One of the newest hotels in Rio. Fantastic rooftop pool with a great view of the beach.
  • Copacabana Praia Hotel, Rua Francisco Otaviano nº 30 - Copacabana, 21 2172-1001 (fax: 21 2287-3344), [68]. checkin: 3PM; checkout: 12PM. R$150.
  • Hotel Vermont (Rua Visconde de Piraja 254 - Ipanema), 21 522-0057, [69]. Affiliated with the nearby San Marco Hotel and Hotel Carlton in Leblon. Very friendly and helpful service. From $R100.
  • Hotel Hispano Brasileiro, Rua Silveira Martins 135 - Catete (off Rua do Catete), 21 265-5990. On a tree-lined side street, inexpensive and pleasant.
  • Hotel Monte Blanco, Rua do Catete 160 - Catete, 21 225-0121. Excellent location, just steps away from the Metro station and across from the Museu da República, but the rooms could be nicer.
  • Hotel Portinari, Rua Francisco Sá 17 - Copacabana, 21 3222-8800 (). This calls itself a Design Hotel. Each floor has a different style but that is really all the difference to a normal hotel. Top floor restaurant for breakfast and a good view of local favelas. R$250-350.
  • Rio Guesthouse, Rua Francisco Sá 5 - Copacabana, 21 2521-8568‎ (), [70]. A boutique guest house located on the beachfront, in a 1200 sq metre penthouse. Beautifully decorated, very comfortable.

Splurge

  • Copacabana Palace Hotel, Avenida Atlântica 1702 - Copacabana, 21 2548 7070 (, fax: 21 2235 7330), [71]. Arguably the best hotel in town, dating back to 1923. It's had its share of famous guests over the years.
  • Fasano, Avenida Vieira Souto 80 - Ipanema, 21 3202 4000 (), [72].
  • Ipanema Plaza, Rua Farme de Amoedo 34 - Ipanema, 21 3687-2000 (, fax: 21 3687-2001), [73]. Neither super-luxurious or ultra-modern, the Plaza's rooms are quite clean and comfortable. The swimming pool on the terrace is nice and the hotel's location is convenient for both shoppers and beach goers.
  • Hotel Marina Palace, Av. Delfim Moreira 630 - Leblon, +55 (21)2172-1001 (fax: +55 (21)2172-1010), [74].
  • JW Marriott Hotel Rio de Janeiro, Avenida Atlântica 2600, Copacabana, 21 2545-6500 (fax: 21 2545-6555), [75]. The newest hotel in Copacabana, the Marriott has deservedly earned popularity in recent years.
  • Othon Palace Rio, Av. Atlântica 3264 - Copacabana, 21 2106 1500, [76].
  • Sheraton, Avenida Niemeyer 121 - Leblon (at the west end of Leblon), 21 2274 1122, [77]. The only hotel in the Zona Sul with direct beach access.
  • Hotel Sofitel, Avenida Atlântica 4240 - Copacabana, +55 (21)2525-1232 (, fax: +55 (21)2525-1200), [78].


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