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Rio de Janeiro Travel Guide

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Its praises have been sung in lyrics familiar the world over. Those girls (and boys) from Ipanema—and Copacabana, Leblon, Lapa, and fast-gentrifying Santa Teresa—are proud to call themselves Cariocas. And no wonder: despite its problems (the notorious favelas, or slums, are plagued by drug- and gang-related unrest), the city has myriad charms. Peaks swathed in emerald jungle rise up between shining apartment towers, and the ultra-rich and the very poor mingle on Rio’s beaches. Culture mavens find bliss among Centro’s Modern-architecture masterpieces, while fashion  fans get their fix from homegrown designers. After dark, the entire city pulsates with samba and bossa nova.

Don't Miss

  • Cooling off after a hot day on the beach with a tangy star fruit sorbet at Mil Frutas—or any other of its 80 exotic flavors.

  • Partying with the locals and taking in the pageantry at Carnival—at least once in your life. The wild annual four-day festivity always starts just before Easter and ends on Fat Tuesday.

  • Taking a 123-year-old train to the summit of Corcovado, home of the world-renowned statue of Christ the Redeemer. (Not to mention, stunning 360-degree views of the city!)

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