Two Days In Rio De Janeiro
This guide will help you to spend two days in Rio De Janeiro. Rio de Janeiro, the Brazilian city of 6.4 million people is a steaming hub of culture, sites, sounds, and history.
The stunning mountains by the sea are breathtaking and the lively city is filled with things to do. It’s a must see in my book, even if you can only spend two days in Rio de Janeiro.
Know before you go
Best Time To Go
The best time to spend two days in Rio de Janeiro is between December and March when you will catch the warm summer weather during the day, and the magnificent thunder and lightning storms of the evening.
Of course, Carnival is in February, so if that’s your thing, then plan ahead. A post pandemic Carnival is probably going to be pretty busy!
The intense rains come June through September, so you probably want to avoid those months!
Where To Stay
Spend your 2 days in Rio de Janeiro within walking distance to the Ipanema Beach. Some neighborhoods are safer than others so do your research.
The Zona Sul or the southern zone near the beach, is a nice mixture of shops, restaurants, hotels, and residences. And you can’t beat walking to the beach! This area is policed more heavily than others, so it’s reportedly a safer neighborhood. That being said, criminals are aware that tourists gather there, so be watchful!
You’ll eat well during your 2 days in Rio de Janeiro! The food is a major part of the culture, so enjoy and be adventurous!
Enjoy Feijoada, a black bean stew, and Churrascaria, barbaqued meat. Drink Caipirinhas, a cocktail made with the traditional cachaça liquor made from sugar cane and mixed with lime.
- The language of Brazil is Portuguese.
- The currency in Brazil is the Real.
- Safety is on everyone’s mind while traveling in Brazil. Rio requires a little more vigilance than in some other cities, because it’s notorious for crime against tourists.
- Purchase a theft proof bag, or undercover money pouch.
- Keep your phone and camera tucked in safely.
- Take rideshare at night.
- You should not venture out alone.
- Don’t engage with the vendors on the beach.
- Of course, do not leave your stuff unattended!
Must See Attractions during your 2 Days in Rio de Janeiro!
The iconic Cristo Redentor, or Christ the Redeemer stands atop the Corcovado Mountain on the edge of the water overlooking all of Rio de Janeiro.
The train ride to the top takes you through an urban rainforest. Keep your eyes peeled for a tropical bird or sloth sighting!
- The trains were built by the Swiss to help the citizens of Rio create their tribute to Christ.
- The statue is a 98 foot tall, art deco statue, with arms spreading 92 feet wide.
- It was built in the 1920’s with a combination of private and church money.
- It’s made of reinforced concrete covered by thousands of soapstone triangles.
- Millions of people make the pilgrimage to the statue each year.
- It’s one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World.
The Lapa neighborhood is Rio’s artistic and cultural hub. It’s home to street art, lively shops, and restaurants.
The bars and music venues are fabulous! Find a Samba music and dance show.
Famous in the Lapa neighborhood are the Escadaria Selarón or the Selarón Steps. Chilean born Jorgé Selarón renovated the 215 steps with over 2000 tiles, between the Santa Teresa and Lapa neighborhoods.
It took him 20 years to create this magnificent tribute to the Brazilian people before dying on those very steps in 2013.
The Carioca Aqueduct or Arcos de Lapa was built in the 18th century in order to bring the fresh water of the Carioca River to the city. Now, the arches are the track for the cable car between Centro and Santa Teresa. You can catch the cable car near Av Mem de Sá.
Walk a short 3 km from Ipanema to the Copacabana Palace and beach. The famous promenade of black and white tiles, from Portugal, create the iconic wave pattern that Copacabana is known for.
Visit the luxurious Copacabana Palace for a drink and to enjoy the atmosphere where the rich and famous have stayed since the 1920’s. Along the way, you will find plenty of shopping opportunities to buy souvenirs.
Ipanema is known for being the place where the rich and famous like to vacation. It overlooks the mountains and has golden sand and remarkable sunsets.
Be careful, because the waves and undercurrent can be very powerful. Very close by you can dine at the Restaurante Garota de Ipanema where the 1962 song, The Girl From Ipanema was written.
Enjoy your 2 days in Rio de Janeiro, stay safe, and wear sun screen!
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