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Things to do in Rio de Janeiro

From classic must-see sights to insider hot spots and local haunts, there are countless things to do in Rio de Janeiro. How do you decide? Start with our travel guide and get our favorite Rio de Janeiro attractions and activities—shops, museums, parks, nightclubs, coffee shops, tours, and more.

Our international team of editors and writers handpick the best things to do in Rio de Janeiro to help travelers discover authentic, local experiences. Whether a hidden boutique with handcrafted products, a popular local festival, a bakery with a cult following, or a picnic-worthy park, Travel + Leisure guides the way, providing information and inspiration. From beaches and bars to cultural attractions and up-and-coming neighborhoods, our list will help you make the most of your romantic getaway, family vacation, or trip with friends. Below find Travel + Leisure’s top picks for what to do in Rio de Janeiro.

  • Academia da Cachaça

    Opened in 1985, this institution draws fans of cachaça, the potent sugarcane liquor that's the base for Rio's most famous export, the caipirinha. S... More
  • Antonio Bernardo

    Rio-born-and-bred Bernardo sells strictly contemporary jewelry designs, many in his signature matte finish. Earrings go for about $2,000, but the a... More
  • Bar d'Hotel

    The Marina All Suites Hotel bar is a Technicolor pastiche of ice-blue and orange walls and Jetsons-style bar stools—all occupied by tall, tan, lean... More
  • Bus Bike

  • Carlinhos de Jesus

    Dancer and choreographer Carlinhos de Jesus heads this Rio ballroom dance school, where teachers give instruction in typical Brazilian rhythms like... More
  • Confeitaria Colombo

    Brazil's most venerable chocolatier (founded in 1894) is hidden on a narrow street in chaotic Centro. The sweets, coffees, and tropical marmalades ... More
  • Corcovado

    Atop one of the city's highest peaks, the world-renowned statue of Christ the Redeemer gives way to 360-degree views. Take the 123-year-old Corcova... More
  • Garota de Ipanema

    The bar where, legend has it, Antonio Carlos Jobim and Vinícius de Morais wrote the song The Girl from Ipanema, and where you can still hear live b... More
  • Ipanema Beach

    What to Expect: Majestic granite peaks jut from a jungle-covered range to create a spectacular backdrop for this mile-long, 300-foot-deep white-san... More
  • Jardim Botânico

    Vast palm-lined avenues lead to groves of cocoa and rubber trees. Giant Amazonian water lilies—some more than three feet across—float in ponds. Est... More
  • La Vereda

    Above the city's fray in the boho-chic hilltop neighborhood of Santa Teresa sits a tiny shop specializing in native crafts. Loosely woven cotton ru... More
  • Maria Bonita Extra

    Skinny pants, diaphanous camis, and slinky tube dresses in eye-popping orange and fuchsia fill the racks at this younger, hipper sister to Brazilia... More
  • Mil Frutas, Jardim Botânico

    Although not quite a thousand, there are more than a hundred flavors of natural ice creams and sorbets at this shop near the Jardim Botânico. Mil F... More
  • Niterói Contemporary Art Museum

    Oscar Niemeyer's architectural masterpiece was completed late in his life—1996—but has the same fantastic improbability and masterful precision of ... More
  • Osklen, Rio de Janeiro

    Designer Oskar Metsavaht's clothes, wave-riding gear, and microscopic bikinis are a sleek, no-frills marriage of Miu Miu and Quicksilver—and come a... More

Explore things to do in Brazil for more options.

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