Here is my list of the top tourist attractions I think people should try and check out while they are visiting Rio de Janeiro. The list is not in any particular order basically just some of my favorite picks of the top things to see and do while in Rio.
1. Sugarloaf Mountain – This is one of Rio de Janeiro’s most famous icons. Take the cable cars to the top of Urca and Sugarloaf Mountain for the best 360-degree views of Rio and some of the most awesome views you will ever see in your life. You will really be amazed.
2. Christ Redeemer Statue – Who would have thought that a giant 130ft statue of Christ and the mountain it’s located on could be an interesting tourist attraction. Even if you are not a religious person just the size of this statue alone will amaze you. Christ Redeemer is one of Rio’s most famous attractions. It’s located on Corcovado Mountain.
3. Copacabana Beach – You can not come to Rio and miss visiting one of the most iconic and famous beaches in the world.
4. Ipanema Beach – Ipanema Beach is one of Rio de Janeiro’s most beautiful beaches. It’s the beach of choice for many of Rio’s wealthy urbanites and celebrities. The Travel Channel has listed Ipanema as the sexiest beach in the world.
5. Jardim Botanico (Rio Botanical Gardens) – This Botanical garden that opened to the public in 1822 is one of the greatest tropical botanical gardens in the world. Even if you’re not a tree-hugger you will enjoy a nice relaxing day in the gardens with over 350 acres, 6000 different species of plants and trees, 140 species of birds, and various reptiles and monkeys.
6. Maracana Stadium – Do you enjoy soccer or football as it is called in this part of the world. Well even if you’re not a soccer fan you will enjoy a Brazilian soccer game at Maracana Stadium. Maracana is the largest stadium in South America. At one time it could hold as many as 200,000 people.
7. Lapa – Brazil Geeks with World Famous Artist Jorge Selaron. If you are really into urban art then Lapa is a must see during the day. You will find some of the best urban art in Lapa thanks to world-famous Chilean artist Jorge Selaron who lives in Lapa. Jorge Selaron is the creator of the Selaron Stairs which you may have seen in videos by U2 and Snoop Dogg.
At night Lapa does a complete 180-degree and turns into an exciting nightlife district. Lapa is home to some of Rio’s best nightclubs, bars, restaurants, and live music venues. You haven’t seen a party until you have walked the Lapa strip on a busy Friday or Saturday night.
8. Santa Teresa Neighborhood – Popular attractions in Santa Teresa include The Santa Teresa Historic Tramway (bondinho). The ride starts in the city center, near the Largo da Carioca square, crosses the old Lapa aqueduct, and goes through the picture-perfect streets of Santa Teresa.
9. Cinelandia Square – Cinelandia is located in downtown Rio de Janeiro. It’s a quick 10-15 minute subway ride from Copacabana and Ipanema. In Cinelandia you will find many historical and interesting buildings including the Municipal Theater (Teatro Municipal), National Library of Brazil (Fundação Biblioteca Nacional), The Old Brazilian Congress Building (Palácio Tiradentes).
10. Tijuca National Park – Tijuca National Park is the largest urban forest in the world and home to 30 waterfalls, hundreds of plants and trees, and at least 100 different species of animals.