It’s a contagious happiness and love for life that intoxicates the city. It’s a sunset so beautiful, people in Ipanema everyday sit on Arpoador rock and applaud its fading rays. It’s Rio de Janeiro, a city that wasn’t designed for passing through. In Rio, you don’t turn a corner before you feel it.
In street dance parties, bouncing with live music, you feel it. In Maracanā stadium, in the ebb and flow of a soccer tide, you feel it. In your Uber from the airport, passing by swaying palm trees, swinging to the Samba on the radio, you’re feeling it.
The exuberant reputation and unique landscape of Rio has attracted the curious and adventurous. It is the image of Brazil to the exterior. It is the epicenter of entertainment and cultural events of Brazil and one of the main commerce hubs. Rio de Janeiro is a city with a bright future!
So why travel to Rio de Janeiro NOW?
Well, its never right to start with money, but, let’s be honest, it can be the make or break reason for going on a trip. At the expense of Brazilians and their currency, it just got a whole lot cheaper to travel to Brazil. The Real (Brazilian Currency) has devalued by around 70% in the last year and a half (2015), which has made even its most luxurious prices attainable for certain travelers. The Dollar and Euro go quite far in Brazil and Rio de Janeiro now, which means you can take FULL advantage of everything the “Cidade Maravilhosa” has to offer.
Check out some of Rio’s hidden gems here!
Consider the one real night out with your significant other, where you forget about prices, and just focus on him or her. Your imagining… a fabulous view, outside terrace seating, intimate energy, high class appetizers, a bottle of wine, delicious entrée, classic desert, and maybe even an “digestif” to top it all off. A real treat because he or she deserves it. Well, normally you would have a heart attack when your credit card bill comes at the end of the month. Now, instead of planning the next special dinner a year down the road, you may even be able to squeeze one or two more of these memorable dinners on this Rio de Janeiro trip, and believe me Rio has its fair share of charming dinner spots with spectacular views.
Try hang gliding, an unforgettable, and pricey endeavor. In February of 2013, hang gliding would set you back about 260 U.S. frogskins. Today, you can have the same experience — photos, video, and 30 minutes of flight time — for around $110. And you can do it over some of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
More about specific pricing about Rio de Janeiro accommodation, shopping, food, and more, click here!
Relax, you are not going to get robbed!
The most photogenic city in the world is safer than it has ever been. Contrary to what news publications like to say about Rio, City Hall has taken numerous measures to reduce crime and prioritize its residents and visitors safety. New small business regulations have been able to legalize many black market operations, such as street and beach venders and local market vendors. Regular police posts can be found on many street corners and even the beaches of the South Zone (Ipanema, Copacabana, Leblon, Lagoa). Transportation infrastructure, including taxis and Ubers, the metro extension, the BRT, and the LVT, has improved all over the city and is accessible at all hours of the night, which decreases your chances of walking down the wrong street. Don’t let miss leading international news dissuade you from traveling to Rio de Janeiro now! You won’t believe how pleasant it can be! (Read more about safety, here)
Favelas might not be “Favelas” for too much longer!
Continued pacification and improving infrastructural projects in the “comunidades” (favelas), commonly translated as slums, have encouraged outsiders to see Rio from a new perspective, transforming neglected areas into something known today as “Favela Hype.” These favelas are a special part of the city, where people go for the culture and experience, and stay for the views. In some areas, you can even camp overnight on mountain top by a starlit wine glass.
(Learn more about Favelas here!)
Local and Federal Governments are putting in the dough!
Government funded initiatives are modernizing Rio de Janeiro as well. Gigantic urban projects are currently in progress, changing the scope of the city, including implementing a light rail downtown (LVT) and revitalization the entire port area (Porto Maravilha). Green parks are being built in much needed neighborhoods. Many new transportation vias, both for vehicles and buses (including the very successful BRT), are improving traffic congestion all over the city. A new Metro line, albeit delayed, will connect the south zone of Rio to the west zone, giving access to some of the most remote beaches and transforming the city into a fully functional, cosmopolitan, tropical paradise.
New state of the art museums have taken the place of rundown buildings. The Museu do Amanhã in Centro just opened its doors in 2016; Museu de Arte do Rio has won international Architecture prizes; Museu da Imagem has change the face of Copacabana Beach. The Museu de Arte Moderna and the Museu de Arte Contemporânia have all undergone renovations and are looking spectacular. Rio de Janeiro now is living up to its rightful position in Brazilian culture.
(Learn more about the urban projects here!)
Many of these changes are consequences of the second global phenomenon in the city in two years, the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. Unlike the 2014 World Cup which spanned 12 cities, the Olympics will be held entirely in Rio de Janeiro. If there’s something to be said about throwing a banging international party, there’s something else to be said about doing it twice.
Today, sailing teams can be seen looping single file like the tail of a kite in Guanabara bay below Sugar Loaf Mountain. Rowers occupy the lagoon, evidenced by lane lines, and time clocks, and the glassy wakes of their boats. Tickets are on sale for both Olympic and Special Olympic test events. The city is going to be alive. Athletes, international and national tourists, and residents alike, everyone’s going to feel it.