10 Photos to Inspire You to Visit Rio de Janeiro

Have you been to Rio de Janeiro?

“I met a girl at the Carnival, in Rio de Janeiro. We danced all night on the boulevard. In doorways we did the tango.” – Spanish Eyes, Ricky Martin

I had the hugest crush on Ricky Martin when I was in high school. My first and only celebrity crush.

Writing this post reminded me of the line from the song above.

Rio de Janeiro is a city of contradictions.

Luxurious apartment complexes; and rickety homes that cling to the side of a mountain.

Shiny new cars cruising next to the beach; and families without running water.

Beauty salons on every block; and barefoot boys wandering the streets at night.

There are so many aspects of Rio de Janeiro to explore. Any short trip would hardly be able to do the city justice. From the colourful spectacle that is Carnival, to understanding the social housing problems. There is much to learn from Rio.

My time in Rio de Janeiro was spent close by Ipanema.

Although this is a rich part of the city, poverty was still very much present.

I did not do a tour of a favela. I don’t have enough knowledge on this issue, so I don’t feel I could make an informed decision as to whether a favela tour is beneficial to the people who live there.

Or if it is a form of exploitation for the sake of a few tourist photos and one’s own conscience.

I did, however, visit the other popular tourist attractions in the city.

I must say, I sufficiently enjoyed the beaches. The water was a wavy in some areas, but the white sand was the softest sand I have ever walked on.

The beach was full of activity – men playing soccer, women watching, children swimming, and vendors strolling the scene hawking hats and wrap skirts.

10 photos to inspire you to visit Rio de Janeiro

1. Christ the Redeemer Statue

Cristo Redentor in Portuguese, the statue stands on top of the Corcovado Mountain and watches over Rio de Janeiro.

Rio de Janeiro Christ the Redeemer

2. Copacabana Beach

In the southern part of the city, Copacabana Beach is one of the most famous beaches in the world. There are even songs about it.

Rio de Janeiro Ipanema

3. The view from Corcovado Mountain

Looking down alongside the Christ the Redeemer statue, you can see Sugarloaf Mountain and other islands in the distance.

Rio de Janeiro Sugarloaf

4. Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio de Janeiro

Perhaps an unusual shape for a cathedral, the bright stained glass inside combine modern and classical.

Rio de Janeiro Cathedral

5. Monkey!

There are lots of cute little monkeys hanging around the top of Sugarloaf Mountain.

Rio de Janeiro monkey

6. Sugarloaf Mountain

Take the gondola twice. First to Morro da Urca and then to the summit of Sugarloaf Mountain.

Rio de Janeiro Sugarloaf

7. Guanabara Bay

See the sailboats crowding the inlets of Guanabara Bay. Come at sunset for a special view.

Rio de Janeiro Sugarloaf

8. The Atlantic Ocean

From one the many beaches in Rio de Janeiro, gaze longingly out over the vast Atlantic Ocean.

Rio de Janeiro Ipanema

9. Carnival

Even if you don’t come to Rio de Janeiro during Carnival, you can still visit the Sambadrome, see the costumes, and even try some on.

Rio de Janeiro Carnival

10.  Ipanema Beach

Swim in the ocean. Sunbathe alongside hundreds of tanned bodies. Buy fresh coconut drinks. Or just take your shoes off and feel the softest sand you have every walked on.

Rio de Janeiro Ipanema

Let me know in the comment section below, what are your thoughts on visiting Rio de Janeiro?

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10 Photos to Inspire You to Visit Rio de Janeiro

Read: A Salty Tour to Laguna Cejar in the Atacama

Read: Santiago and the Andes from Cerro San Cristóbal


  1. Thanks for sharing! I don’t even need 10 photos for inspiration, I only need one! lol. Have been dreaming of visiting Rio de Janeiro for awhile now!!
    Did you have any issues with any scams? I hear that they are bad there. Not that it discourages me from going, just have to be careful and aware. 🙂

    • Glad you liked my photos. I don’t remember having any issues with scams. Yes, my friend and I were very cautious and aware whenever we were out.

  2. Looks beautiful. We have not been to Brazil, but I would love to visit one of these days. I love that you got such amazing views from Corcovado Mountain–such an impressive view. 🙂

    • Oh my, I was a bit too young and innocent to be saying things like that about Ricky Martin at the time, but I did think he was very very good looking.

      • I’ve been three times, all for work, and I got to see very little of it. I want to go back on vacation to be able to see more. So much to see!

    • Really? Then I hope you get a chance to visit a place where there are wild monkeys. They are so cute. Just be careful of your bag and food.

  3. Guanabara Bay looks stunning. That shot is magic. The fact that you did not tour the favelas for the sake of a few photos says a lot about you. And btw, that monkey has an odd odd face! 😛 xx

    • The Bay does look pretty at sunset when it is filled with sailboats. I can’t quite wrap my head around the idea of touring a place where people live in poverty, with no other purpose than to see a place where people live in poverty. They were a bit strange looking monkeys. But they were tiny and cute.

      • Possibly taking photos of the famous favelas! That would be the reason. The same reason why people go to concentration camps and click photos of personal possessions of victims.

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