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Expats living in Rio de Janeiro will find that there is plenty to see and do. The city's abundance of natural splendours and man-made wonders puts expats in a perfect position to enjoy all sorts of attractions – from beaches and restaurants to mountains and iconic statues.
Attractions in Rio de Janeiro
Christ the Redeemer
Undoubtedly one of Brazil's most famous landmarks, the towering statue of Christ the Redeemer was proclaimed one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007. Thanks to the statue's mountain-top position, its silhouette can be seen throughout most of the city. Nevertheless, it's well worth the trip up Corcovado Mountain to experience the true scale of this awe-inspiring statue.
The magnificent panoramic views from atop Sugarloaf Mountain are unrivalled. Glass-walled cablecars transport visitors to the peak of Sugarloaf Mountain every 20 minutes. Although the ascent takes just three minutes, the cable car ride alone affords gorgeous views of the city.
Copacabana and Ipanema
Copacabana Beach is one of the world's most famous and most beautiful beaches. A promenade runs alongside the glittering white sand. It's lined with restaurants, bars and nightclubs waiting to be explored. There is also an annual New Year's Eve party which promises a spectacular night of fireworks and concerts.
Meanwhile, Ipanema is the place to see and be seen. It's well-known as a playground for the rich and famous. One of the wealthiest areas in all of Rio, the beach of Ipanema is an excellent spot for surfing and lounging in the sun.
National Museum of Brazil
With nearly half a million items in its collection, the National Museum of Brazil is a treasure trove for history junkies and casual visitors alike. There is something to fascinate everyone in the sprawling museum, making it an ideal destination for a family outing. Most of the museum is made up of permanent exhibitions. However, there are also temporary installations, so the museum is worth visiting more than once.
The Maracanã Stadium has a capacity of nearly 80,000 and is one of the best ways to experience the Brazilian sports culture. Local football teams regularly play matches at this stadium, It has also played host to worldwide events, including Olympic and FIFA World Cup events.
Also known as the Selarón Steps, this staircase of over 200 steps is covered in tiles, mirrors and ceramics of blue, green and yellow to create a mosaic effect. Chilean-born artist Jorge Selarón created the mosaic and considered it his tribute to the Brazilian people. The steps were truly a labour of love as Selarón was often unable to cover his own living costs, spending his money on materials instead. It took Selarón more than two decades to complete.
Rio's botanical gardens are a refreshing respite from bustling city life. Nature lovers will enjoy being in amongst the thousands of different species of plants and trees in the garden. There are also 140 species of birds, most of which are used to humans and can be observed at close range.
Are you an expat living in Rio de Janeiro?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Rio de Janeiro. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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