Rio de Janeiro is seriously hot and sexy with tons to see and do – but make sure you follow our guide to Brazil’s etiquette and customs to stay on the right track during your travels;
Don’t overdress on the beaches – Sexy is the keyword on Rio’s beaches! Just about everybody, big and small, dresses in the teeniest bikinis and trunks on earth. Head to Rio’s Ipanema and Copacabana Beaches for that perfect all-over tan – no white bits allowed. Be prepared to don a skimpy thong and teeny bra top - this applies to men and women! And it goes without saying that you’ll need lashings of high-factor suncream as pink bits are so not fashionable! Rio is seriously sexy – this is not the destination for the easily offended.
Don’t moan about how busy it is – Let’s get one thing straight right now; Brazil and in particular Rio de Janeiro is HOT stuff right now. The country is hosting both the FIFA World Cup in summer 2014 and the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2016. So it goes without saying that both Rio and Brazil is going to be busy in the build-up, during, and after these huge global events.
Don’t miss the Carnaval – If you love riotous, vibrant, colourful street parades then you MUST catch the iconic annual Rio Carnival, which is held each Easter-time (March to April). If you want to sit in your hotel room watching DVDs and ordering room-service – what on earth are you doing in the party capital of South America?
Don’t skip Cristo Redentor – There’s a reason that the Christ the Redeemer, aka Cristo Redentor, statue is the iconic symbol of Rio! Make the time to travel up the Corcovado Mountain, either by hiking or via the tram – after all it is 2,330 feet (710 meters) tall! You’ll be greeted by the largest art deco statue in the world – all 38 meters and 1145 tons of it.
Ditch the bling – Avoid making yourself a target for pickpockets and thieves. Leave your expensive jewellery, watches and designer clothing at home. The same goes for cameras, phones and tablet devices. This is not the place to be waving your shiny new iPad around!
Don’t moan about the weather – Rainy season can be pretty intense in Brazil and unless you’re from the UK (heck it rains almost 24/7 here) flash floods can catch you unawares. Typically the rainy season runs from November to march in the south and southeast and from April to July in the northeast. Rio had serious landslides this March which demolished hundreds of homes.
Don’t even think about driving in Brazil – Unless you’re a top-notch driver, navigating the highways here is not recommended. The road accident rate is high and the quality of the roads is pretty poor, especially in the more rural regions. Bus and truck drivers are a pretty determined bunch too, and won’t let a tourist car get in their way!