Rio’s Best Samba Spots

Samba: that iconic aural gumbo of rapid-fire drum cadences, squeaking cuicas, tinkly violões, and exultant voices that defines Brazil’s musical culture more than any other genre (bossa nova is essentially samba slowed way down). Rio de Janeiro is to samba as Chicago is to jazz — the big city where earlier, often rural incarnations of […]

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July 4, 2014 by
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Things to Do in Niteroi

Flying into Rio de Janeiro’s close-in Santos-Dumont Airport, visitors rarely pay attention to the other side of Guanabara Bay: the side at the other end of that really long bridge. That bridge actually leads to Rio’s smaller sister, Niteroi. The one-time capital of the now-defunct state of Guanabara, Niteroi serves up Mod and historic architecture, museums, theatre, dining, nightlife, and even beaches in copious amounts. In fact, the city has the second-highest number of Oscar Niemeyer-designed buildings in Brazil, after the national capital.

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June 22, 2014 by
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How to Spend a Rainy Day in Rio

Part of what makes Rio de Janeiro the Marvelous City is its striking natural beauty, embodied by impressive landforms and stunning beaches. But if so many of the city’s charms are outdoor experiences, what is a hapless visitor to do when it rains in this tropical metropolis? Rio’s got plenty of indoor delights to while away the hours until the inevitable downpour lets up, so there’s no reason to hole yourself up in a hotel room just to stay dry.

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May 11, 2014 by
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Rio’s Best Museums

Rio de Janeiro is known more for sandy beaches and string bikinis, but the Marvelous City’s delights don’t just stop with samba schools and seaside diversions. Rio’s museums are truly hidden gems that even surprise lifelong cariocas. While rainy days tend to be the most popular times to visit museums around the city, this list […]

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April 30, 2014 by
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Rio Boteco Crawl: Ipanema

Stroganofe e chope at Boteco Belmonte. Photo courtesy of Randal Schwartz via Flickr.

In Brazil, the boteco is as ubiquitous and integral to the national culture as pubs are to Ireland. Along with the near-frozen glasses of chope (draft beer), botecos serve up heaps of stuffed and/or golden-fried goodies and hours of gregarious conversation and laughs; if you’re lucky, there’ll be a sizzlin’ samba band stirring up the scene with hip-swinging rhythms. Rio’s botecos are renowned for their authentic feel, and the famous beachside district of Ipanema has some of the best in the bunch.

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April 27, 2014 by
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9 Must-See Sites in Rio de Janeiro (Including 4 You’ve Probably Never Heard Of)

Rio de Janeiro

This guide to Rio de Janeiro’s must-see sites includes all the heavy hitters. But it will also clue you in on the city’s lesser-known spots, like a nearly two-century-old library tucked among the downtown skyscrapers, and a secluded observation deck that provides epic views of the city. Read on to learn more about Rio de Janeiro’s top sites, including four you’ve probably never heard of.

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April 11, 2014 by
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Beach Etiquette in Rio

Ipanema beach, Rio. Photo courtesy of over_kind_man via Flickr.

Home to some of the world’s most iconic urban beaches, you can’t come to Rio without stepping foot on the white sands of Ipanema or jostling for space among the crowds of Copacabana. But before you slap on the suncream and pack up your beach bag, be sure to read these tips on beach etiquette in Rio.

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March 28, 2014 by
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A Local’s Tips for Visiting Rio for the World Cup

Patrícia Leopoldino is a Rio de Janeiro native and Viator private guide who leads customized tours all over the city. She gave us some helpful advice on traveling in Rio and Brazil during the World Cup.

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March 14, 2014 by
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40 Unforgettable Experiences to Have in Rio

Go paragliding in Rio. Photo courtesy of Matthew Bietz via Flickr.

With its cinematic views, white sand beaches and vibrant Carnival celebrations, a trip to Rio is top of many traveler’s wish-lists and the cultural capital of Brazil doesn’t disappoint. From ticking off the sights to getting off-the-beaten-track, cast aside your guidebook and print out this list of 40 unforgettable experiences to have in Rio.

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March 14, 2014 by
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What to Eat in Rio: Açai

Tuck into a bowl of acai, banana and granola in Rio. Photo courtesy of Phillie Casablanca via Flickr.

It might be a globally renowned superfood and a staple of health food stores around the world, but there’s no better place to tuck into a bowl of acai (pronounced ah-sigh-ee) than Brazil. A low-GI food and powerful antioxidant, the Amazonian fruit has long been celebrated for its nutritional properties and is packed with B, C and E vitamins, omega acids and potassium.

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February 28, 2014 by
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