Rio de Janeiro
Planted between lush, forest-covered mountains and breath-taking beaches, Rio de Janeiro – the Cidade Maravilhosa (Marvellous City) – has many charms at her disposal, and is a rich melting pot of cultures.
Famed for its Carnival and Copacabana and Ipanema beaches, the samba-fuelled nightlife and raucous football matches of this huge, iconic Brazilian seaside city more than delivers on its romantic promise.
Home to the glorious 38-metre Christ the Redeemer statue atop Mount Corcovado and the stunning Sugarloaf Mountain, a remarkable granite peak with cable cars to its summit, truly make Rio a place like no other. Music is the city’s heartbeat; a soundtrack that blends rock, bossa nova, funk and, of course, samba – the African influenced beat that’s synonymous with Rio.
Carnival means parade floats, flamboyant costumes and samba dancers, and Rio’s festival is considered the world’s largest. Other occasions for partying around town include funk parties in the favelas (shanty towns) and boat parties on the bay. Food is a treasured part of local life, with its dishes roots deep in African and European traditions. Cuisine options vary from meaty churrascarias, tasty feijoadas, vibrant street food and gourmet restaurant selections.
Rio is far more than just a frantic seaside resort, and the area offers access to some outstanding outdoor adventures: hiking in the Tijuca rainforest, cycling alongside the lake and beaches and sailing across Baía de Guanabara.