Go beach yourself!
You are in Rio and you are probably going to the beach. It`s an obvious thing to do in a city that is world famous for it`s beachlife. You want to see Copacabana and Ipanema and you want to feel some sand between your toes. Fair enough. Everybody goes to the beach in Rio. And when we say everybody, we mean everybody. That`s part of the problem.
Our advice is very simple. If you like overcrowded places where half of the people you meet try to sell you some crap and the other half are noisy and loud locals, drunk, either of narsissism or cheap cachaca or both, then you should go to one of the above mentioned beaches on a busy day. There you can enjoy your holidays, burning your skin off in 40 + degrees, fighting your way to the water and back, if you are able to move at all. At least you can take a selfie in one of the worlds most famous beaches and maybe you manage to post it before your phone gets stolen by some kid criminals who is there for a busy day of loathing.
Ok, let`s be fair again. It`s not all bad. That part obviously was a bit exaggerated, but at least now you have been warned, and the worlds most famous beaches does not need any recommendations from a tiny travel blog like ours. I guess our point is, since you probably are going there anyway, you just as well know the truth, apart from the water and sand and all.
Amazing view of Copacabana beach from Leme, at the far edge of the beach.
There is a reason for the fame of Copacabana and Ipanema, though. At it`s best, they are amazing places with a lively atmosphere full of vibrance. It is perfectly possible to have great day there together with other sand lovers. Stroll out early in the morning, wearing your hawaiianas and sunglasses, get a chair in a good spot from one of the many stands along the beach. Buy an overprized kanga with a smile and enjoy a couple of coconut water to keep yourself fresh and awake in the sun. Wear sunscreen. Have your lunch in one of the kiosks along the sidewalks and take a few refreshing swims in the Atlantic. Heck, why not get totally into it and play football or volleyball with the locals in the afternoon have a day to remember. Wear suncreen and love the sand, happy beaching!
In our experience, the best way to enjoy the beach is to go on a less busy day. Do something else on sundays or in local holidays, and if you are willing to explore a bit, try one of the many other beaches of Rio. And when swimming, note that there are some strong undercurrents, so be careful and do not go too far out. And again, wear sunscreen.
Go to the beach on a less busy day and you will find it more enjoyable.
Buy an overprized kanga with a smile, people do this to support their family.
PS! We stole the top picture from here.