The city of Rio de Janeiro and its surroundings enjoy countless touristic options for all tastes. Despite being a large city, the urban view and nature relation is one of Rio´s main landmarks, revealing a unique contrast only found here. Apart from the beaches, internationally known, Rio also has several options of Ecotourism which include parks, forests, hiking trails, waterfalls, among other programs which allow for direct contact with nature.
For more detailed information on tourism in Rio de Janeiro and its surroundings, please, log on to: RIO OFFICIAL GUIDE
Below is a list with some of these options in the city of Rio de Janeiro:
To exploit the world´s largest urban forest, one may opt for a ride along the sidewalks built around the forest, exploiting its rivers, waterfalls and animals, aside from museums and old houses of the colonial period.
The Flamengo Park extends from the Santos Dumont Airport to the district of Botafogo. One may rent bicycles and ride along the coast line by the Guanabara Bay, where it is possible to have a privileged view of the Sugar Loaf and the Corcovado. Besides the view and the leisure area, the Park shelters three museums: the Modern Art Museum (MAM), the Carmem Miranda and the Museum Monument in honor to the dead in World War II.
Point for the practicioners of aerial radical sports, such as delta wing and paraglide, also being one of the favorite points for rappelling and climbing.
The Historic Museum of Rio de Janeiro is inside the City Park. It sits right beside the Tijuca National Park, a conservation area in which it is possible to hike and see the lakes enjoying the native flora.
It is worth visiting this historic garden, where works of art such as statues in marble and French fountains in cast iron mix with the caverns, lakes, centennial trees and cascades.
With 348 thousand m² of Atlantic Forest, Lage Park is located on the Corcovado Mount coast, and shelters caves, gardens, waterfalls and trails, apart from noted picturesque restaurants for their delicious breakfasts. Inside the park is also the Lage Park School of Visual Arts. For more information, please, log on to Lage Park.
Surrounded by Atlantic Forest, the Forest Garden is visited mainly by those who trade the beaches for waterfalls and seek to be inserted into nature. It is an extension of Lage Park.
With its majestic Imperial Palm Trees, the Botanical Garden has 41 hectares of bromeliads, orchids and water lilies. Located in a noble zone of the city, the ride is perfect for those who seek peace and quiet or who appreciate nature. For more information, please, log on to: Botanical Garden.
Inspired after the romantic English style, typical of the 19th century, the Quinta da Boa Vista is a historical garden comprised of caves with waterfalls, ponds, bridges and centennial trees. Apart from the view, the Quinta shelters the National Historic Museum where one finds a rich collection of national culture, and the RioZOO, the zoo from the city of Rio de Janeiro. For more information, please, log on to: Quinta da Boa Vista.
Located in the Quinta da Boa Vista, the Zoological Garden of Rio de Janeiro has a wide variety of fauna, with around 2,100 animals among reptiles, mammals and birds. For more information, please, log on to: Rio Zoo.
Apart from the several program options one can do in the city, Rio de Janeiro State also offers a wide variety of activities and unique views that must be visited. A few hours away by car or by bus are the Mountain Region, Lake Region and Green Coast, varied touristic destinations which please all tastes.
Among the several possibilities we highlight the touristic destinations of each region:
Petrópolis is located 68 km from Rio de Janeiro, and was built to host the Court. Highly admired by D. Pedro I, the city still keeps traces of glorious times, ostentating aristocratic mansions from the barons, counts and viscounts in the vicinity of the Imperial Palace (today a beautiful museum housing a collection from the imperial times). Among other attractions we highlight the House of Santos Dumont, the Chrystal Palace, the São Pedro de Alcântara Cathedral, the Rio Negro Palace and the houses of the Baron of Mauá, Princess Isabel and Rui Barbosa. Itaipava hosts excellent restaurants and hotels, apart from ceramic and handcraft stores. The area is also ideal for the practice of sports such as rafting on the Paraibuna river, rappelling down the Véu da Noiva waterfall, horse riding and ecologic tracking. For more information, please, log on to: Petrópolis Municipality.
After the discovery by French actress Brigitte Bardot in 1964, Armação dos Búzios turned from a small fisher village to one of Brazil´s best known balnearies. Located around 170 km from Rio, the 8 km peninsula is surrounded by islands and paradisiacal beaches which became famous worldwide after the visit of the actress, who received a monument in her honor on the promenade that takes her name. The sea cost has beaches for all tastes, such as Geribá, João Fernandes, Azeda and Azedinha, Ferradura and Rasa. At night the gathering point concentrates on Rua das Pedras, with nightclubs, bars, restaurants and Brazilian and international brand stores. For more information, please, log on to: Armação dos Búzios Municipality.
Located on the Green Coast, 160 km away from Rio de Janeiro, Angra dos Reis has 365 islands surrounded by the Atlantic Forest and bathed by crystal green waters. Ilha Grande, the largest of the islands, is also famous: it is 86 beaches scattered along its 190 km2. To get there one takes a 1 hour trip by boat from the Port of Angra. The place is perfect for the practice of Trekking, trails and walking, with many options between hills, mountains, creeks, rocks, banks and beaches, most of which from within the Atlantic Forest. For more information, please, log on to: Angra dos Reis Municipality.
Paraty is a town which blends history, night life and beautiful beaches. Declared a National Historic Heritage, the city started in the 18th century when it was the main port to ship the gold brought from Minas Gerais State and it still keeps the typical architecture of that time. Amid the colonial villas, one finds charming Inns and restaurants run by renowned chefs. The International Literary Festival of Paraty (FLIP) is held on a yearly basis and attracts tourists from several parts of the world. On top of that are several beaches – some yet without urbanization, and some with fisher´s villages. For more information, please, log on to: Paraty Municipality.