Christ the Redeemer
The Christ the Redeemer statue, high atop Corcovado mountain, is the most famous icon of Rio—and one of the best-known attractions in the world. The statue is massive, and quite impressive up close, but it's the ride to the top of the mountain that's half the fun. Take the rickety cable car up and you may be treated to a samba band that jumps on to play halfway through the ride. For the best views—the city and ocean were meant to be seen from this vantage point—pick a clear day, and go early to avoid the crowds.