Not packed in a bus. Not herded with a group. Self guided walk is the SAFEST way to sightsee while observing SOCIAL DISTANCING!

Rio de Janeiro Beach Walk (Self Guided), Rio de Janeiro

The Ipanema and Copacabana beaches are two of the main reasons Rio is so famous around the world. Take our self guided walking tour to discover these and more picturesque beaches and golden waterfront strips that will make for an unforgettable experience.
How it works: Download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Rio de Janeiro Beach Walk Map

Guide Name: Rio de Janeiro Beach Walk
Guide Location: Brazil » Rio de Janeiro (See other walking tours in Rio de Janeiro)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 5
Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 9.0 Km or 5.6 Miles
Author: gene
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Leblon Beach
  • Ipanema Beach
  • Arpoador Beach
  • Copacabana Beach
  • Praia Vermelha (the Red Beach)
Leblon Beach

1) Leblon Beach (must see)

In the 19th century, Frenchman Charles Leblon owned what is now one of Rio’s most affluent neighborhoods and fabulous beaches. Today, the area owns the name of Leblon, where you’ll find swanky bars and nightclubs, scantily clad bathing beauties, and the homes of the rich and famous. Similarities are often made between this beach and its neighbor, Ipanema; however, Leblon is usually quieter and more exclusive. It is actually one of the few quiet beaches in Rio de Janeiro; an excellent place to enjoy yourself, leave your daily troubles behind and relax.

Why You Should Visit:
There are epic views of the "Two Brothers" rock formation (Dois Irmãos) and Arpoador – but generally, a good choice if you're more interested in personal space than people watching.

Make sure you try a "água de côco" at least once, as there's something fantastic about sitting on a beach in South America drinking from a coconut that's just been cut open.
At some point on your trip be sure to also try a Caipirinha, though not necessarily while you're on the beach, it's still a great part of the culture to experience.
Ipanema Beach

2) Ipanema Beach (must see)

Infused with the soul of Rio, Ipanema Beach is one of the most popular meeting points in the city. The neighborhood sees an intense movement of residents, celebrities and tourists, who crowd the sidewalk and even the bike path. The nightlife is also quite busy, even on its outskirts. Still, this is definitely a quieter (less hectic) alternative to Copacabana. And in general, Ipanema and its neighborhood are a lot chicer and higher-class than the Copacabana area.

Why You Should Visit:
Beautiful beach – fun to swim at, hang out in the sand, or play a game of volleyball. The sand is soft, the water is clear, and the waves are quite powerful.
Plenty of vendors nearby to take care of all of your food, drink, and seating needs. The beach is clean, safe (but beware of thieves) and well lighted 24/7.

If you like sunsets (who doesn't?), Ipanema has a popular favorite, Pedra do Arpoador, for just that. It's truely romantic, even if it tends to get really crowded all around at that time of the day. Next to it is a small park where you can enjoy music and even open-air dance performing during weekend evenings.
Arpoador Beach

3) Arpoador Beach (must see)

The Arpoador is famous for having one of the most beautiful views in Rio de Janeiro. On one side, you can see the beaches of Ipanema and Leblon with Morro Dois Irmãos (Two Brothers Hill) in the background, while on the other, the beaches of Copacabana are in full view. As well as its beautiful view, the beach also has a green area where Brazilian and international artists present their skills. There are festivities and amenities for everyone to enjoy and many family-friendly activities, snack bars, and sporting courts. At the same time, it is a hub to all serious surfers.

Why You Should Visit:
Beautiful place to enjoy a spectacular sunset and also a walking distance from two other very famous beaches – Ipanema and Copacabana.

Be sure to take a walk up the rocks as it is worth the overlook of the Rio beaches – and join the many locals taking in the view as well. Very safe.
Although the area is known for petty crime, you'll be just fine if you don't flash valuables such as jewelry, expensive cameras, and cellphones.
The best days to visit are around the autumn equinox when the sun sets right between the two peaks of Dois Irmãos.
Even if not in time for the equinox, the sunset here is one of the best you'll see! Check it out while having a caipirinha.
Copacabana Beach

4) Copacabana Beach (must see)

Located at the Atlantic shore, the Copacabana beach stretches from Posto Dois (lifeguard watchtower Two) to Posto Seis (lifeguard watchtower Six). Leme is at Posto Um (lifeguard watchtower One). There are historic forts at both ends of Copacabana beach; Fort Copacabana, built in 1914 (at the south end by Posto Seis) and Fort Duque de Caxias, built in 1779 (at the north end). One curiosity is that the lifeguard watchtower of Posto Seis never existed.

Hotels, restaurants, bars, night clubs, markets and residential buildings dot the promenade. Copacabana Beach plays host to millions of revelers during the annual New Year's Eve celebrations and, in most years, has been the official venue of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup.

Why You Should Visit:
Quintessential Rio! Less polluted than some of the other Rio beaches, and you can find everything you need (except sunscreen & a book) right on the beach at one of the kiosks.
Locals hold a night market on weeknights (5pm-12am) across the beach and hotels, which is also really fun to go to. Some vendors just take Reals, while others take USD/CC.

As crime is notoriously a problem on Rio's beaches, avoid going at night and take as little as possible with you (and only a small amount of money).
You don't have to be paranoid and there are police everywhere but muggings happen.
If people come to talk to you and/or your group, make sure that all your items are secure.
If you go for a swim, wash the salt with the fresh water shower on the beach.
Praia Vermelha (the Red Beach)

5) Praia Vermelha (the Red Beach)

The Red Beach is located in the neighborhood of Urca Hill. It is a small beach but is nonetheless greatly appreciated for its beautiful surroundings, as it sits between the hills of Sugar Loaf and Babylon.

Walking Tours in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Create Your Own Walk in Rio de Janeiro

Create Your Own Walk in Rio de Janeiro

Creating your own self-guided walk in Rio de Janeiro is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Rio's Remarkable Places of Worship Tour

Rio's Remarkable Places of Worship Tour

Take our self guided walking tour to discover the most remarkable cathedrals, churches and monasteries in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Even for a non-religious traveler these temples, both classic and modern, impress with their skill, creativity and devotion.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 Km or 2.2 Miles
Lapa Walk

Lapa Walk

Rio de Janeiro is rightly proud of its many impressive landmarks. This great city, rich in culture and history, has many fantastic sights for even the most experienced traveler. Take this tour of Lapa neighborhood - home to some fine examples in architecture and impressive historic landmarks.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.9 Km or 1.8 Miles
Rio Landmarks Walking Tour

Rio Landmarks Walking Tour

Rio de Janeiro can proudly boast of a number of landmarks that will impress even the most well-travelled visitor. This huge city, rich in culture and history, offers marvelous scope for sightseeing. Here's our rundown of spots you should definitely visit during your time in Rio.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.8 Km or 3.6 Miles
Rio Famous Museums Walk

Rio Famous Museums Walk

Rio de Janeiro is the perfect spot for visitors interested in cultural activities. As well as many great theaters and other cultural venues, Rio is home to more than 50 different museums. Take this tour to see the most important art museums in the city.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 7.0 Km or 4.3 Miles
Center Walk

Center Walk

Within the busy metropolis of Rio, you can find many places that will take you back to colonial times. Each of these exquisite buildings typifies a different architectural era, be it colonial, gothic, or neo-classic and so on. Today home to various cultural events, the following sights are a must-see for all visitors to Rio. This tour combines both Rio's bohemian downtown area and the...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.1 Km or 2.5 Miles
Rio de Janeiro Classic Architecture Walk

Rio de Janeiro Classic Architecture Walk

Rio is home to many places where you can feel the colonial times. Each of these exquisite buildings has its own architectural style, whether it be Colonial, Gothic or Neo-Classic and so on. Nowadays often home to cultural events, the classic buildings on this tour are a must-see for every visitor to Rio de Janeiro.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.8 Km or 4.2 Miles

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

16 Uniquely Brazilian Souvenirs to Bring Home from Rio de Janeiro

16 Uniquely Brazilian Souvenirs to Bring Home from Rio de Janeiro

Other than the sun, passion and football, for which Brazil is renowned and which cannot be fitted into one's luggage, picking a memorable gift from Rio is a tough job. And this is not because of the lack of suitable things to choose from, but because of their abundance. Indeed, there're...