Doce Balanço, a Caminho do Mar...
The tropical, humid weather is a blessing. In Rio de Janeiro, average temperature is 22º C, but in the peak of Summer (between December and March) it reaches 30ºC. Water surrounds the city’s silhouette, side by side with the mountains covered by forests. There are 150 kilometres of cycleway and much more to do than climbing Sugarloaf Mountain.
Running on the sidewalk
Or simply walking. Some say Copacabana, located in the south side, is one of the most famous in the world. With 4 kilometres in length, it’s accompanied by the notorious sidewalk pavement (“calçadão”) where many cariocas (the city’s inhabitants) like to exercise early in the morning.
The stones were placed in 1906, inspired by the pavement of Rossio Square in Lisbon. Copacabana is a favourite when it comes to personal / group training, besides jogging, beach volley and football. When taking a break, you can always refresh yourself with juice, beer or coconut water in one of the kiosks.
It’s also one Rio’s busiest areas, filled with hotels, restaurants and tourists. New year’s eve celebrations usually gather more than two million people on the beach sand!
Surf at Arpoador
Between Ipanema and Copacabana, a small paradise for water sports. Along the 800 metres of Arpoador beach, big waves attract fans of surf, windsurf, kitesurf and bodyboard.
Sunset is more beautiful seen from here. Join this Rio tradition: climb up the rocks, watch the sun fade away and clap at that great moment! After that, you can linger in the water — the beach is equipped with night lighting.
Nearby is Garota de Ipanema Park, named after the poem of Vinicius de Moraes sung by António Jobim. Skating and skate tracks are available.
The depths of Tijuca
This area includes several mountains surrounding the city, like Gavea Stone and the famous Corcovado. It’s advisable to plan ahead your visit to Christ the Redeemer, inaugurated in 1931 and elected one of the 7 wonders of the modern world in 2007.
For those looking for strong emotions, hang gliding trip from São Conrado is an option. Or climbing Pico da Tijuca, more than one thousand metres all the way to the top.
By the lagoon
This setting seems especially conceived with the purpose to make you relax and enjoy. Located in the city’s noble area (the south side), surrounded by houses, gardens and trails, Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon is one of the most popular leisure spots of Rio.
It’s the perfect place to enjoy paddling and canoeing. On the cycleway by the water, you’ll find kiosks and bike renting facilities. If you’re spending the day at the lagoon, make sure you stay for the evening: the views are gorgeous at night.
A game at Maracanã?
No need to mention that the stadium where two of the most popular teams play (Flamengo and Fluminense) is the largest in Brazil, a country crazy about football. And it’s also one of Rio’s great symbols.
Maracanã is located on the north side and going to a match is an unforgettable experience. Tickets should be bought in advance if you want to avoid big queues or the risk of a sell out. During the game, the show on the benches is as lively as the one on the pitch, with non-stop singing and choreographing.
If a whole match is too much for you, choose the guided tour instead. The stadium location has great access, including a metro station.