Where to stay in Rio De Janeiro Brazil
Today I will inform you about the best places to stay in Rio de Janeiro. I recommend staying in the south zone when visiting Rio. The south zone includes a few different neighborhoods we will discuss today. Most of the Ubers are inexpensive for tourists and there is also an underground rail system that can connect you with the other Zones and Barrios fairly easily.
The Best Places to stay in Rio de Janeiro
- Barra Da Tijuca
- Santa Teresa
- Sao Coronado
Why you should stay in Copacabana
Copacabana is one of the popular neighborhoods in Rio de Janeiro. The Barrio has fantastic Views and has the famous Copacabana Beach. The Barrio is popular amongst tourists and local people alike. I personally like to stay in Copacabana mainly because of its proximity. I love being able to get around all the other parts of the city quickly. If you want to do a tour, then the hotels are usually pickup points and drop-off locations.
Is Copacabana a Safe Place to Stay?
Copacabana is somewhat of a safe place to stay. One of the biggest problems is that being in one of the biggest tourist destinations in the world will bring people trying to capitalize on tourists. One of the Biggest issues I see here is the Muggings. There are a lot of snatch-and-run crimes happening. Most of them are people’s smartphones. Criminals especially love to grab iPhones. It’s better not to try and fight back or chase the criminals if you are the victim of a snatch and run. The majority of the time they are not working by their selves and their friends may get violent with you if you try and chase them.
Being picked-pocketed is another thing that happens frequently. This normally happens walking along the boardwalk or the back streets. It can also happen at night across the street from the beach where there are several clubs and bars. How this works is random girls may come up to you and start hugging you or dancing on you. They typically will target you if you seem to be intoxicated but it’s not necessarily a requirement.
Late at night, you do not really want to be out after 12 am. The later it gets the sketchier it gets. You definitely do not want to be on the beach at these times of the night. That is where more serious crimes can happen such as armed robbery. Since we are talking about that the back streets are also not a good place to be walking around late at night. There have been cases of people kidnapping tourists and driving them around to atm machines until their card does not work anymore.
Also, there are Favelas inside of Copacabana, you do not want to Travel inside them without a Tour Guide. When I visited, I used a local Tour guide named The Favela Brothers Tour. My friend Obi took me to his Barrio called Rochina. It is not located in Copacabana but it’s also not that far if you want to get a local experience. It is very important to avoid these areas.
Something else you want to watch out for is there are times that a Large Flash Mob of Favela Kids will come down in large Groups and go to Copacabana Beach and just start snatching as much stuff as they can. So, it is very important that you are paying attention to your surroundings.
What to do in Copacabana?
- The Beach
- Live Bands
- Volley Ball
- Beautiful Sunsets
What to expect when visiting Copacabana Beach
Copacabana Beach has a lot of positives when it comes to being entertained. One of my favorite things to do is go to the Beach. I really love the culture and all the eye candy out there. Now getting in the water is a big no for me. Those waves seem strong and depending on the time of year you visit; the water isn’t the bluest. Me personally I’m not getting in no body of water that I don’t have the ability to see my feet.
There are a lot of different stands that rent out Chairs and umbrellas and also have food and Beverages. You can buy drinks from the stands and you can also buy food from the venders that walk up and down the beach yelling cerveja, agua. Agua, Cerveja. You will also hear them yelling queso, which is a stick of cheese that they warm up on portable grills they walk around with. Other venders include the guys from Cartagena Colombia selling the Bead bracelets and the guys from Africa selling sunglasses and power banks and blue tooth speakers.
You will need to bring a few things that I will show you below. The first thing is a power converter. If you have any electronics you will not be able to plug in your devices to the wall because they have different size outlets, the other thing is the voltage is different so if you use a cheap style adapter you may burn your device up. Here in the USA, we use 120. In Brazil, some are 120 and some are 240. Take a look at a full list of what you should pack for Brazil in this link.
I also highly recommend bringing a backup phone. In today’s world having our phone has become a part of our life using it for almost everything we do, including Uber, Banking, Navigation, Calling, Texting, and Taking pictures. You want to make sure just in case you are pickpocketed or get your phone snatched you have a backup at your hotel or Airbnb.
I also recommend bringing a powerful Quality power bank to charge your devices because a lot of the outlets won’t be conveniently near your bed. So if you are someone that wants to sleep with their phone close to you, I have a quality Powerbank that I use that is still able to be brought onto an airplane. Because some are not allowed by TSA. There are cheaper ones but if you want a Quality one with fast charging I definitely recommend the one listed below.
You will also want to have a copy of your vaccination card. I recently found out that Samsung Wallet has the option to store a digital version right on your phone. This is supposedly just as good as the Physical copy, but I still bring the physical copy with me outside the country. Just in case. I was turned around before trying to enter sugarloaf mountain.
Phone Service in Copacabana
I personally use Google Fi. I have been able to use the service in every country I’ve been to so far besides Ethiopia and Cuba. And in both locations, no American phone service will work. If you decide to try Google Fi then we can both get a $20 Fi Credit if use my Referral Code: D37NA1
Copacabana has a great nightlife scene. I normally enjoy going to the kiosk and ordering food and drinks and listening to live bands. You will always see the locals singing along and dancing. This experience is a vibe worth experiencing. There are also some night clubs and bars where the party last all night long. You can sometimes find that the Main hotels usually have parties on the rooftop floors on the weekends.
The Best Restaurants in Copacabana
- Churrascaria Carretão Lido
- Churrascaria Palace
- Cantón – Peruvian & Chinese Food
- Restaurante Chon Kou
- BiBi Sucos
- Restaurante Mondego
- Deck buffet
There are many different restaurants to choose from while in Copacabana. I have eaten at a lot of other restaurants seeing that I have been a frequent visitor for many years. The list above is a Few of the restaurants I always seem to return to.
If you want a Brazilian steak house that food is just as good as the other more expensive places, then look no further than Churrascaria Carretão Lido. This steak house, like the others, has different options like sushi, a salad bar, and a constant flow of workers walking around with different cuts of beef. Sometimes they bring out chicken and lamb also. I can say I recommend it. Due to inflation, the price has been going up since the first time I visited but it’s still cheaper than the other comparable steakhouses.
A lot of the time I always find myself wanting Chinese food while I’m in Rio. I think it’s because I eat it so much while I’m at home. I find myself in Rio for extended amounts of time so I always seem to find myself back in Restaurante Chon Kou. This place is located in the Posto 5 section of Copacabana. It has a view of the ocean if you sit by the windows. The portions at this place are large and the food is tasty. I normally get the shrimp fried rice but have also eaten the Sweet and Hot Soup.
If you want to try a traditional Brazilian Meal, then I think Restarante Modego and Decks buffet will have you covered. I like eating at Decks because it is one of the cheapest buffet options to eat. Also, if you go at night, they start having Different pizza options also. I like eating chicken, sausage and Beans and rice. You will fix your own plate and there are plenty of options to choose from.
The Best Hotels in Copacabana for Carnival
- Hilton Rio de Janeiro Copacabana
- JW Marriott Rio de Janeiro
- Pestana Rio Atlantico
- Hotel Rio Othon Palace
These are a few of the hotels I know with rooftop views and pools. Starting at the beginning of Copacabana you have the Hilton Rio de Janeiro Hotel. This place is located in the Posto 2 section of Copacabana. Right Across the street, you have Copacabana Beach and both intersections are main streets that can take you where you want to go quickly. The JW Marriott is located between Posto 3 and 4. This is one of the more expensive places to stay. They have a Rooftop pool and bar also. They usually have a DJ also. The Pestana Rio Atlantico has one of the nicest rooftop bar and pool areas. The rooms are a little outdated, but I really enjoy the ocean Front Room with the Jacuzzi. Hotel Rio Othon is located in the Posto 5 section of the beach and is one of the tallest hotels in Copacabana, if not the tallest. This place, like the others on the list, has a rooftop pool and bar area.
During Carnival, the Prices are normally 3 times the amount that they regularly are. If you are planning to stay during Carnaval I recommend booking your hotel early. The rooms tend to sell out fast. Especially the cheaper priced rooms. Take a look at some of the hotels on the map below.
Copacabana Hotel Prices
What is the Weather like in Rio de Janeiro?
From what I have experienced being there each month of the year, it truly varies. One month I went there in October and it was Nice and warm. There wasn’t that much rain I had a perfect time. The next year I was there and it was still cold and rainy in the Month of November. Then in December, the rain had basically stopped and it started to warm up.
Another Year I went in December and it rained basically the entire month lol. I have found that the weather updates are almost never correct for Zona Sul at least. Traditionally December – March is summertime in Rio De Janeiro. That is considered the Rainy Season. June- August is the Wintertime. During the wintertime, it is supposed to be dry season so there shouldn’t be that much rain. Even in the wintertime, I haven’t seen the temperature drop below 65 degrees F. And yes the summertime gets Hot at around 89 degrees F. Take a look at Copacabana Weather here.
Is Rio Friendly for Tourists?
In Rio, I think the majority of the tourist are other Brazilians. Yes, you will see other foreigners but the Majority of the people I see out and about are from other cities and states in Brazil. The Cariocas as the people from the State of Rio are called is very friendly and happy people from what I’ve witnessed.
There have been a lot of times I’ve had English Speaking Brazilians help me when they thought I was in distress. A lot of restaurants usually have at least one person that speaks English if you are visiting Copacabana. Still, sometimes there are some restaurants where that do not speak English at all. Including American Brand restaurants like Mc Donalds and KFC.
How Many Days Should I Stay in Rio?
You just flew all the way to Brazil. I recommend you stay no less than 1 week. Honestly No less than 2 weeks lol. The first time I went to Rio de Janeiro I could only spend 6 days there because of my job. While it was enough time to visit all the tourist attractions, I still didn’t get to experience Rio as I should have. Rio is a Big City. I still haven’t been there long enough to adventure through the entire city. There are so many different restaurants and beaches and other Tourist Attractions besides the Top 5 Tourist Attractions of Rio de Janeiro.
Is Rio De Janeiro Cheap or Expensive?
Rio De Janeiro has one of the Most Expensive Neighborhoods in South America. The Barrio Leblon is definitely not Cheap to me lol. Really, any of the tourist neighborhoods are not going to be necessarily cheap. The prices for food and drinks and to rent beach chairs and umbrellas the Prices are definitely cheaper than they would be in the USA. As far as accommodations go, that’s where it can get a little pricey. Still probably cheaper than prices in the USA for what you are getting. You are at one of the most famous Tourist destinations in the world. During New Year’s and Carnaval, the Prices are way more expensive. Almost 3 times the normal cost throughout the year so I can understand why someone would definitely believe it’s expensive.
Where should I stay in Rio De Janeiro?
Copacabana is one of the most Popular Neighborhoods in the world and for good reason. I love staying in Copacabana because it’s convenient. It is a little more dangerous than some other barrios when it comes to Petty theft and muggings, but that’s because it has the most tourist. Right down at the end of Copacabana Beach, you have another barrio called Leme. Leme is one of my favorite places to stay also. It even has its own favela in the back. This area definitely seems safer to me and more of the locals choose to hang out there on the beach. Leblon is the richest neighborhood in South America and safety is usually no concern. Even, still, you should never let your guard down. Barra da Tijuca is about a 30-minute drive from Copacabana but it’s also a safe upscale neighborhood. The beach is also better in my opinion. Still, as of today, I will still choose to stay in Copacabana or Leme.
Well, This Concludes Everything that you need to know about staying in Copacabana. If you have been before and have any suggestions or experiences that you would like to share please let us know in the comment section below.