Located between the mountain and the sea, Rio de Janeiro is the primary tourist attraction in Brazil and one of the most spectacular metropolitan cities in the world. The city was founded in 1565 by the Portuguese. With some of the exotic beaches, mountains, planned green space and urban cultural landscape, Rio de Janeiro has been rightly nicknamed as Cidade Maravilhosa, which means marvellous city. The city also attracts thousands of LGBT tourists every year and is a prominent global LGBT destination. The colossal statue of Christ the Redeemer is one of the many reasons to visit this beautiful city. Here is a list of places to visit in Rio de Janeiro.Also Read - "Chadh Chadh Ke Mujhe Hug Karte Hain"! Tejasswi Prakash Finds Vishal Kotian's Behaviour Dirty And Inappropriate

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1. Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer)

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Located at the summit of Mount Corcovado, Christ the Redeemer is a colossal statue of Jesus Christ created by Polish-French sculptor Paul Landowski. The statue was built by the Heitor da Silva Costa, a Brazillian engineer, along with Albert Caquot, a French engineer. A Romanian artist Gheorghe Leonida created the face of the statue. This 30 meter-tall statue with its outstretched arms covering 28 meters is the most recognisable landmarks in Rio de Janeiro. The statue was opened on October 12, 1931. In 2003, elevators, walkways and a set of escalators were added to make the monument more accessible. If you are in Brazil, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to visit the massive statue of Christ the Redeemer.

2. Sugarloaf Mountain


Located at the mouth of Guanabara Bay in Rio de Janeiro, the rocky peak of Sugarloaf is one of the major tourist attractions. A strip of land connects the mountain to the city. You can reach Sugarloaf, which is at an altitude of 394 meters above the harbour, by a glass-walled cable car from Praça General Tibúrcio to a lower peak called the Morro da Urca. From there, take a second cable car to the top of Sugarloaf. The mountain is known for the panoramic view of the bay, the spectacular coast and the islands.

3. Copacabana Beach


Brazil is famous for its beaches and Copacabana in Rio is among the best in the world. This beach is the place where you can witness Brazilian cultural, ethnic and social diversity. The four-kilometer-long beach is one of the popular tourist destinations in Rio. The small streets along the beach are lined with charming old buildings, finest hotels and restaurants. Copacabana is also known for the Copacabana Palace and Copacabana Fort. Visit Copacabana and enjoy the calm water and white sand.

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4. Arpoador Beach


Arpoador Beach is the best place to witness the magical sunset. The beach is located between Copacabana and Ipanema beach and has a rock that juts out into the sea. You can hike to the end of the rock for the best view of the sea. During summer, people on Arpoador Beach wait to watch the sunset and as the sun goes down they clap. You can stay back after the sunset to enjoy a swim in the sea at night. The rock and sand beach is also the birthplace of surfing in Brazil. The beach is one of the best surfing spots in Rio.

5. São Francisco da Penitência Church


Photograph Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Located in Rua da Carioca, São Francisco da Penitência Church is among the most important colonial monuments in Brazil. The simple outer façade stands in contrast to the sparkling golden sculpted gilt painting and woodwork. Portuguese sculptors and woodcarvers, Manuel and Francisco Xavier de Brito, were among those who contributed to the exuberant interior. The church has three separate sections with three different entrances. The church is an example of beautiful Portuguese-Brazilian Baroque gilt woodwork.

6. Quinta da Boa Vista Museum

Quinta da Boa Vista

Located in São Cristóvão, Quinta da Boa Vista was the palace and residence of the imperial and royal family. Now the villas, gardens and the palaces are now museums and public parks. The museum has the largest ethnographic, zoological, archaeology and botanical collection in the nation. The extensive park has woodlands, lakes and caves. The park is also home to a zoo, which has over 2,000 species of animals and birds from across the world. The park also has a miniature railway.

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7. Tijuca National Park


Covering approximately 32 kilometer square of land, Tijuca National Park is considered to be world’s largest urban forest. This tropical rainforest in Rio was created in 1961 to protect the springs that supplied water in the city. You can reach the national park by taking the train up to Corcovado, after that, follow the road to the forest. The forest is home to some of Brazilian raccoon, Capuchin monkeys, hawks and other animals. Most of the trees in the forest are native species. The forest is also famous for the Cascatinha Waterfall.

8. Jardim Botânico

Jardim Botânico

Jardim Botânico is an exotic Botanical Garden with over 8000 plant species from all over the world. The Prince Regent Dom João created this garden in 1808.  The garden also houses historical monuments and a research centre, which the largest botanical library in the country. The main attraction of the garden is the lake, which has the huge Vitória Régia water lilies from the Amazon region.

9 São Bento Church

São Bento Church

Located on the St Benedict Hill, São Bento Church is one of the beautiful Benedictine complexes in the country. Originally, the church was built without the aisles in 1617. During the second half of the 17th century, the church was expanded and eight side chapels were added. Domingos da Conceição, a monk, was mainly responsible for the beautiful carvings on the ceilings and the walls. The figures of St. Scholastica and St. Benedict on the high altar were also created by the monk. The church is known for the paintings and silver work at choir chapel. The painting, Senhor dos Martírios (Christ of the Passion), which is a masterpiece by a monk and a painter, Ricardo do Pilar, is places in the monastery’s sacristy.

10 Ipanema Beach

Ipanema Beach

Another famous beach, Ipanema beach is known for its social life. The beach was made popular by the song “The Girl from Ipanema” by Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinícius de Moraes. Ipanema has some of the finest hotels, best shopping area and a vibrant nightlife. From local products to designer wear, you will get everything here. This beach is the first place you should visit when you reach Rio.

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