Guide to Copacabana beach resort
Welcome to Copacabana!
The Copacabana beach resort is located in the vibrant and glamorous south zone of Rio de Janeiro with a 4 km strip of golden sands all there to fulfill your dream of a perfect journey.
You can try surfing, swimming and even diving Copacobana. For those that prefer the sand rather than the water, the Copacabana beach resort can get you hooked on sand volleyball or a barefeet soccer game, or you can simply enjoy a great icy caipirinha from one of the many beach bars, while admiring the tanned beautiful brazilian girls around.
The city neighborhood, with the same name as the beach, has one of the worlds most dense population per square meter of 25 000, and a mixture of people from all social classes and origins.
You will see million dollars buildings here, with the favela (the brasilian slum cities) hanging above in the hills.
The district is among other things famous for it’s nightlife, Copacabana Palace and of course the Copacabana beach resort it self.
The beach created it’s name in the 1920 when the opening of the most beautiful hotel at the time (and many argue that it is still) the Copacabana Palace hotel.
Brazil and Rio was known as exotic and several famous people, kings and movie stars stayed at the palace. It has been captured in films such as flying down Rio with Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers and was is considered an important piece of Rio history. Copacabana palace can easily be spotted as the white giant hotel in the middle of the copacabana beach resort. It’s definitely worth a visit even if you won’t be staying here.
The Copacabana beach resort stretches for three miles from Leme at your far left to the Copacabana fort at your right. (See Copacabana map here) The white sands are good for a morning jog if you are sporty.
On your way you’ll pass various beach bars and “postos” as they are refered to in Portuguese, meaning life guard posts which are often used as meeting points for different groups of people.
Postos are numbered from 1 to 11 beginning at Leme,passing Copacabana, Ipanema all the way to Leblon. Post number 6, just east of Rua Farme de Amoedo in Ipanema, is good for gay people who want to do some flirting at the beach.
Best time to book a vacation to Rio de Janeiro and enjoy the Copacabana beach resort to the max, in my opinion, is during the most popular season from November till March. You want to be comfortable with warm weather because the average temperature will climb to the high 30°C in the summer months, with the occasional refreshing summer rain.
People come home from schools on summer holiday bringing the activity in the city to stormy heights. The downside is that the prices go up and the hotels get full.
My preferred top ten things to do on the Copacabana beach resort:
1. Celebrate New Years Eve on Copacabana! Nothing like dancing barefoot in the sand, singing with Brazilians, enjoying the shows and the fantastic fireworks lighting up the skies!
2. Surf on Arpoador and sometimes on Copacabana if the waves are good enough. Arpoador usually has better waves.
3. Walk the wavy pavement of Copacabana and look at all the people. A promenade each day is great.
4. Eat and drink at the local beach bars, and the small bars on the Avenida Atlantica
5. Have some icy cold Acai with cereal. Acai is red mushed, a frozen fruit with lots of vitamins and excellent taste. I had never tried before coming to Copacabana
6. Play football and / or beach volley with hands or legs. The Brazilians are very good with both. There are also other training equipment if you want a work out.
7. Drink guarana and a cold coconut at the Avenida atlantica (main street by the beach) small bars! These are very typical for Brazil. Abselutly a must for all visitors!
8. Have a look at the sunday market. The whole street is closed from driving on sundays, instead it is filled with small wagons selling all sorts of things.
9. Go to Emporio in Ipanema! This small bar has cheap drinks and a amazing atmosphere. I like the music playing here, often rock and alternative. The place gets really crowded and people end up standing in the streets outside. No worries, you can bring your drinks out.
10. Go to a rodizio restaurant. You pay an entrance fee, then eat as much as you like! The waiters offer all kinds of meat, and you have a buffet with rice, fried potatoes, salad etc..
Having a snack at the Copa beach
First of all, the beach bars offer excellent service if you want something light to eat like homemade sandwiches, or maybe some cold beers or a caipirinha.
They dish out chairs, tables (about $1 to rent) and the beers come covered in plastic or isopore so they stay cold for a longer time. I found it to be very useful when the temperature break 40 degrees and you’re sweating like in a sauna!
The Copacabana beach resort is frequented with all kinds of sellers offering mineral water, beers, sandwiches (“sandwich natural”) very cheap and in my opinion very good too. You can get good looking fakely and ban rays here, cheap allthough the quality isn't quite the same as the original sunglasses.
If you want something more fancy, the whole Copacabana beach resort area has a chic reputation and relaxed feel complimented by some of the city's best bars and restaurants.
If you’re out for a stroll and wish to taste some excellent Italian refined cuisine, don’t miss Cipriani at the Copacabana Pallace, one of the best restaurants in Rio de Janeiro.
Cipriani mainly offers the Italian flavors of a classic menu.
Da Brambini and Dom Camillo are also enchanting their clients with Italian simple yet truly satisfying Italian dish – ravioli, pasta and tagliatelli.
Don’t miss out the cream-and-coconut sauce!
If you love ice cream, then you should definitely pay a visit to Babuska. Best flavors and freshest ingredients, including exotic fruits are there to amaze your passion for desserts.
It’s right on Ioja A in Copa. Exceptional prices, delicious ice cream.
And don’t forget trying the frozen Acai which is a slush like icecream, very tasty and refreshing with cereal! You can find it several places on the Copacabana beach resort, just stop by the corner lunch cafes. If they don't sell it, they'll point you in the right direction.
Acai will get you filled with energy for you to handle the hectic samba life. It’s really cheap aswell, only R$ 3 – 5 don’t miss it!
Stayng at the Copacabana beach resort
The famous white beach resorts of Ipanema and Copacobanabeach are lined up with deluxe hotels, stylish restaurants and groovy nightclubs, yet you may enjoy your stay no matter the size of your pocket.
This place is so diverse and fascinating that you’ll need to rediscover it each time you’re back for a new adventure in Rio.
There is accommodation for everyone in Copa. This is the place of diversity that you may discover only after a long stroll on the Avenida Atlantica.
From 5* exquisite hotels like Acapulco or Copacabana Palace to popular hotels on the coastline and to inexpensive places like Edifício Jucati the offer is generous and tempting.
Previously known as Copacabana Praia, Edificio Jucati is a former residential building that currently offers spacious suites and apartments for travelers that wish to spare some money for the journey. You’ll find it at Rua Tenente Marones de Gusmão 85 at the Copacabana beach resort.
Among places that you shouldn’t miss while in Copacabana, one is Bip Bip, famous for its great music.
Tuesday and Sunday nights are definitely the samba and pagoda nights. It's rather common to see famous musicians of Brazil joining the party: Beth Carvalho, Nelson Sargento, Walter Alfaiate, are regular guests at Bip Bip.
For visitors that wish to catch an eagle eye view of the Copacabana beach resort, Skylab Bar is just another place to pay a visit to.
You can admire the stunning beauties of the city from the 30th floor of Rio Othon, enjoy traditional food made by the Cariocas and take a tranquil sip of batida, the cocktail of the house.
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