9 Best Beaches To Visit in Rio De Janeiro

By Meghana Agashe on Sep 06, 2017
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Rio De Janeiro, a city that needs no introduction! One of the most popular tourist attractions in the world, the city of Rio is on the top of every traveler’s bucket list; it is on the top of mine for sure! A holiday-lover’s paradise, this city in Brazil has so much more to offer to the tourists than the famous statue of Christ-The Redeemer. Famous for its vibrant culture, amusing carnivals, bustling markets, energetic samba, breathtaking landscapes and peppy music, Rio has something in store for everyone. But if you are anything like me, the first thing that will captivate your attention when talking about Rio would be the thought of its fantastic beaches. The sunny shores, the crashing waves, the azure waters and the huge stretches of sand surely amp up the excitement quotient for all the tourists flocking to this city. From the highly popular ones like Copacabana to the secluded and less-frequented ones like Joatinga, Rio has a huge variety when it comes to beaches.

With more than a dozen seashores to choose from, we present you with a list of best beaches in Rio De Janeiro that are sure to leave you stunned. (You can thank us later!) So, all the sea-lovers and oceanholics, head over to Rio’s spectacular beaches for a healthy dose of sun and sand!

1. Copacabana - The Party Beach

PC: Wikimedia Commons

"At the copa, Copabana, The hottest spot north of Havana. At the copa, Copabana, music and passion were always in fashion," hums singer Barry Manilow as he describes the famous beach of Copacabana. And how aptly he puts it! Synonymous with glitz and revelry, the coast of Copacabana is popularly known as the coastline that never sleeps! Nestling in the shadow of the Sugarloaf Mountain, this 4-kilometer-long stretch of sand in Rio is always bustling with activity.

Thronged by party animals and music lovers, this beach is one of the hottest party spots in the town. Live music and fireworks keep the visitors constant company while the infectious energy of the crowd ensures that everybody has an incredible time. To top it off, few of Rio’s best beach hotels are a stone’s throw away from Copacabana! A well-lit promenade dotted with numerous bars, a beach packed with tourists and a glamorous time await you at the most popular beach in Brazil- the Copacabana beach. So, what are you waiting for? Head over to one of the best party beaches in Rio to have the time of your life!

The Vibe: Highly infectious and energetic

Accessibility: Three metro stations, around 40 bus routes and private transportation along the Avenida Atlantica

Things to do: Be a part of the impromptu dance parties, surf on the azure waters, watch the occasional live Samba performances or sunbathe on the beaches while sipping a cold beer!

2. Praia Vermelha - An oasis of solitude

PC: Wikimedia Commons

"Smell the sky, and feel the sea, let your soul and spirits fly!" Singer-songwriter Van Morris might have been referring to the beach of Praia Vermelha in his song ‘Into the Mystic’. A tiny oasis of solitude and calmness, the Praia Vermelha is a seldom-crowded, family-friendly beach located between Morro da Urca and Morro da Babilonia in the neighborhood of Urca. Tourists are rewarded with unforgettable views of the turquoise waters on the backdrop of the Sugarloaf Mountain when visiting this virgin beach.

The rocky coastline and pristine waters make this seaside area one of the most romantic beaches in Rio. Praia Vermelha is also known as the Red Beach due to the red glow cast on the coast when the sun rays are reflected by the pinkish grains of sand. This idyllic beach lined with a myriad of colored umbrellas, palm trees and occasional bars is a welcome change from the otherwise noisy and crowded beaches if Rio. Visiting the Praia Vermelha beach has to be on the top of your list of things to do in Rio De Janeiro!

The Vibe: Laid-back and tranquil

Accessibility: Nearest bus stop- Avenida Pasteur próximo ao 451 or private transport along the Avenida Atlantica

Things to do: Take a romantic stroll along the undisturbed sand, sunbathe on the beach or simply admire the gorgeous views of the coastline while relaxing on the beach

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3. Leblon - A paradise for beach-sport lovers

Is surfing, volleyball, football, skating and basically any other beach-sport more important to you than partying or sunbathing? If yes, then the Leblon beach in Rio is the place for you to be! An extension of the Ipanema beach, this shoreline is located in the impressive and affluent neighborhood of Leblon. Lying in the shadow of the magnificent Dois Irmaos Mountain, the Leblon coastline is a haven for sports and adventure aficionados.

A family-friendly beach, this place even has a separately enclosed sand playground for kids! The beach is also bordered by a bicycle track, thus making it ideal for cycling enthusiasts. The walkway lined with bars, restaurants, and cafes and the numerous street vendors thronging the area give this beach a friendly and a warm vibe. There is never a shortage of things to do when you are on the Leblon beach in Rio!

The Vibe: Warm, welcoming and sporty!


  • Drive along the Av.Delfim Moreira to reach the Leblon Beach
  • Nearest Bus Stop- BRS 1,2,3 - Avenida Delfim Moreira próximo ao 1746

Things to do: Indulge in a game of volleyball, enjoy surfing on the crashing waves or take a walk down the bustling walkway lined by cafes and restaurants

4. Barra da Tijuca - The longest beach in Rio

PC: Barrazine Da Barra/Flickr

Located in the West Zone of Rio De Janeiro is an 18-kilometers long stretch of white sand, beckoning the tourists with its exquisite beauty- the Barra de Tijuca beach. The green waves lapping at the shore, the typical tropical landscapes and the scenic mountain vistas at the Barra de Tijuca are sure to seduce the tourists into visiting this beach.

The strong tide at this beach makes it one of the most sought-after surfing beaches. From kite surfing to bodysurfing, tourists can indulge in it all! If you are a first-time surfer, fret not! A few centers at this beach provide the visitors with basic training lessons in surfing! Barra da Tijuca is indeed one of the best beaches in Rio De Janeiro. Besides surfing, the plenty of seaside kiosks serving a huge plethora of foods and drinks ensure that everybody visiting this extensive coastline has a great time!

The Vibe: Friendly and adventurous

Accessibility: By private vehicles

Things to do: Surf and swim in the green waters or relax on the white sand while sipping on coconut water

5. Ipanema - A glorious stretch of spotless, flour-white sand

PC: Wikimedia

"Tall and tan and young and lovely, the girl from Ipanema goes walking and when she passes, each one she passes goes ah," go the lyrics of Frank Sinatra’s iconic song, 'The Girl from Ipanema'. The catchy tune of this song does complete justice to the marvelous beach of Ipanema in the South Zone of Rio. Located in the uber-chic and elite neighborhood of Ipanema, this happening beach is always alive with action. Flanked by the stunning Dois Irmaos Mountains, the Ipanema beach captivates the attention of the tourists with its gorgeous locales.

This all-inclusive stretch of spotless white sand is a hit among both the types of crowd- the young, hip, party-goers as well as the sunbathing and socializing ones. The stylish beach hotels lying in the proximity of the Ipanema beach further add to the attractiveness quotient of this place!

The Vibe: Vibrant and outgoing


  • Nearest Bus Stop- Avenida Vieira Souto próximo ao 610
  • Drive along the Av.Vieira Souto to reach the Ipanema Beach

Things to do: Relax on the beach, eat scrumptious food at the seaside kiosks, indulge in sports like wakeboarding or shop for local Brazilian items from the Hippie Fair (Only on Sundays)

6. Joatinga Beach - A picture of serenity

PC: Wikimedia

The 300-meter-long tiny beach of Joatinga is a hidden jewel on the Atlantic coast of Rio. This quaint and isolated beach is perfect for beach-lovers and sunseekers looking to relax and spend some quiet time away from the crowds. This clean and rustic beach offers the tourists with diverse landscapes consisting of the Atlantic rain forests as well as the virgin coasts. Though not situated close to the suburbs of Rio, the Joatinga beach is ideal for a coastal getaway.

The outstanding location, the uninterrupted view of the horizon and the pleasant weather make this beach a preferred spot for rejuvenation among tourists and locals alike. If you are anything like me, and if the thought of a blissfully quiet time in the vicinity of the sea tempts you, head over to the Joatinga beach without any hesitation! Also, did I mention? This secluded, rocky coastline with azure waters is one of the most instagrammable beaches in Rio! :P

The Vibe: Serene and calm

Accessibility: By private transport

Things to do: Nothing! Literally, this beach is best for simply lounging on the sand, soaking in the sun and relaxing.

7. Arpoador - The land of dreamy sunsets

Flanked by the Copacabana beach on one side and the Ipanema on the other, the Arpoador beach in Rio brings to the tourists a slice of the local Carioca lifestyle. The fantastic views and the warm, dreamy sunsets makes this beach a hit among couples. Fancy a romantic and quiet time with bae in the fading sunlight on the beach? If yes, then the Arpoador beach is the perfect place for you!

Watching the sun go down the horizon as the palm trees rustle around you is indeed a sight that will stay with you for a very long time. The pleasant ocean breeze and the salty air add to the charm of this beach. This little curve of sand is also famous for the gigantic rock jutting out onto the shore of this beach. The rock is lined with numerous walkways which are perfect for an evening stroll. With a lovely climate and spectacular views, this beach is indeed one of the best beaches in Rio De Janeiro

The Vibe: Romantic and dreamy

Accessibility: Drive along the Av.Vieira Souto to reach the Aproador Beach

Things to do: Watch the sunsets, walk along the adventurous walkways or surf on the turquoise waters

8. Leme Beach - The perfect family-beach

PC: Wikimedia

Located at the foot of the jungle-clad Leme hill, the Leme beach is another hidden gem on the coasts of Rio. This family-friendly beach is easily accessible from the suburbs of Rio, thus making it convenient for the tourists. This tranquil shoreline provides visitors with spectacular views of the Sugarloaf Mountain. Ideal for sunbathing, the sunny Leme beach is perfect for sunseekers and those looking for a tan.

Another reason to visit this beach is the wide variety of snacks served at the excellent beachside restaurants lining this shore. Also, the jazzy nightlife and the energetic vibe definitely ups the charm of this beach. A day at the beautiful Leme beach is sure to restore the soul and energize the mind!

The Vibe: Lively and enthusiastic


  • Nearest Bus Stop- Avenida Atlântica próximo ao 12-08
  • Drive along the Avenida Atlantica to reach the Lema beach

Things to do: Eat at the beachside restaurants, relax by the sea and sunbathe

9. Prainha Beach - A secluded and untouched beauty

Tucked away in the western part of Rio is a secluded tropical beach frequented by very few beachgoers- The Prainha beach. The crystal clear bright blue waters and the strikingly stunning skyline makes this beach one of the most scenic beaches in Brazil. This half-crescent shaped coastline boasts of soft, white sand and a blissfully calm ambiance.

Surrounded by rainforest covered slopes, rocks and cliffs, the Prainha Beach invigorates the tourists with its stunning natural beauty. The crashing waves and the whistling breeze make this beach a very surfer-friendly one. Someone rightly said, “To go out with the setting sun on an empty beach is to truly embrace your solitude.” Head over to the Prainha Beach in Rio to experience total silence and solitude.

The Vibe: Peaceful and relaxing

Accessibility: The Surf Bus

Things to do: Relax, surf or simply lounge on the sand

Rio is indeed full of incredible beaches, each one different from the other, and yet all of them equally remarkable! I am sure after having read about these kick-ass beaches in Rio, you must be itching to pack your bags and embark on a beach holiday in Brazil! So, what are you waiting for? Ditch the monotony, pack your swimsuits and head over to the best beaches in Rio De Janeiro for a sunny and fun-filled time!

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