Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's number one tourist destination

Copacabana, Sugarloaf Mountain or the Cristo Redentor statue…do they mean something to you? Rio de Janeiro, of course! Known for its colourful and extravagant carnival, Rio de Janeiro is a favourite tourist destination. It is also Brazil's second largest city after the capital, São Paulo. City of festivals, beaches, museums, Rio has it all.
It is also a city of contrasts, as is the country. The favelas, Brazil's shantytowns, are located alongside wealthy neighbourhoods. Over 10 million people, the "cariocas" (Rio's natives), live in Rio de Janeiro and the greater area. A trip to Rio de Janeiro is the opportunity to discover Brazil's culture and spirit. Air France offers regular flights to Rio de Janeiro.

Legendary sites in Rio de Janeiro

In order to discover Rio de Janeiro, you must start with the places and monuments that have made the city famous.

The Corcovado: the postcard image of the Corcovado with the Cristo Redentor statue is to Rio de Janeiro what the Statue of Liberty is to New York. The summit of the Corcovado has an altitude of 710 meters and offers a breathtaking panorama of the city. You can reach the top by railroad, stairs or an elevator. It is one of the most visited sites in the city. The statue of Cristo Redentor that overlooks Rio measures 38 meters.

Sugarloaf Mountain: another emblematic site in Rio de Janeiro, the Pão de Açúcar culminates at 396 meters. You can reach the top with a century-old cable car. It is located at the entrance to Guanbara Bay.

Copacabana: stretches 80 km and is THE beach in Rio de Janeiro. It is always animated and Brazilians and tourists go there all year round. You can drive along the beach via the Avenida Atlantica. The beach at Ipanema is worth a visit for its nightlife and shops.

The Tijuca Forest: it is the world's largest urban forest in the very heart of Rio de Janeiro. You can walk in the forest and admire its waterfalls.

Santa Theresa: typical district in Rio de Janeiro. Take the city's only tramway, Bonde.

Lapa: there is no better neighbourhood than the Lapa for partying and going out at night. You can listen to a wide variety of music.

You will notice a lot of favelas around the city of Rio. You can enter some neighbourhoods with a guide. The most famous are Morro do Borel, Cidade de Deus or Bento Ribeiro which was the birthplace of Ronaldo, the football player.

Around Rio de Janeiro

About 150 km from the city, Ilha Grande has untamed beaches and many natural treasures. You can dive or hike, or simply relax on the white sandy beaches.
Paraty is also a place that you should not miss during a trip to Rio de Janeiro. Located on the Green Coast, the town is surrounded by lush nature. It has magnificent colonial-style buildings that are on UNESCO's World Heritage list.
We recommend reserving a ticket for Rio de Janeiro in the spring or fall, to take advantage of a mild, sunny climate. However, Brazil has many climates depending on the region. Before you leave, make sure that you find out about the region that you want to visit.