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Last updated on December 31st, 2018 at 12:03 pm

Rio de Janeiro ToursWhen the New York Times recently published an article titled “The 46 Places to Go in 2013,” Rio de Janeiro was featured in the limelight. The sub-header revealed why Rio was chosen for the #1 spot: “Because the whole world will be there in 2014.”

Rio de Janeiro will indeed be the world’s center stage in the coming years. In 2014, the World Cup will be hosted in the Marvelous City, and in 2016, the Summer Olympics will compete there as well. But Rio de Janeiro is a chart-topping travel destination even without those upcoming events. Here’s why you should plan to travel to Rio de Janeiro in 2013.

Natural Beauty

Natural beauty is Rio’s strong point; don’t plan on spending too much time indoors. Beat the crowds by visiting Rio de Janeiro before the world descends on the city in 2014. Plan to hit at least a few of these hotspots:

The Guanabara Bay awed the first sailors who arrived in Rio de Janeiro, and the sparkling bay continues to awe visitors. There are 130 islands scattered throughout the bay, surrounded by rolling green hills, granite peaks, and golden beaches. We offer a Schooner Cruise through the Guanabara Bay for those on a tour in Rio de Janeiro.

Travel to Rio de JaneiroSugarloaf Mountain is one of Rio de Janeiro’s highlights, both literally and figuratively. At 396 meters (1,299 ft), this granite peak looms over the bay. Those who climb to the top via a cable car “bondinho,” gain panoramic views of all that makes Rio de Janeiro the “Marvelous City.” The cable car ride to Sugarloaf is included in all our Rio de Janeiro city tours.

Corcovado Mountain is another one of Rio de Janeiro’s indisputable must-sees. This mountain rises 710 meters (2,329 ft) in the Tijuca National Forest, located within the city. Atop this mountain is the 38-meter-tall (125 ft) Christ the Redeemer Statue is known as “Cristo Redentor” — one of the icons of Rio de Janeiro. Climb to the top via the trenzinho railway, also included in our Rio de Janeiro city tours.

Tijuca National Forest encompasses 3200 hectares (7907 acres), all within the borders of the city. This massive urban forest of Atlantic Rainforest includes the Cascatinha Waterfall, the Pedra da Gavea, several vista points and picnic tables, and walking and hiking trails. We offer a 4×4 off-road adventure safari that takes you through the forest, stopping to see the flora and fauna along the way.

Cultural Events and Museums Year-Round

Travel to Rio de JaneiroAnother draw to Rio de Janeiro are the cultural events, going on throughout the year. And with the upcoming major events, many new museums, arenas, and venues are breaking new ground. Travel to Rio de Janeiro in 2013 and take advantage of seeing these new and exciting sites!

In preparation for the FIFA World Cup next year, the Maracanã Stadium is getting a makeover. Built-in 1950 for the World Cup, its was the largest football stadium in its time. The Confederations Cup Finals will be held on June 30th, 2013.

Sports stadiums aren’t the only sites under construction. In the downtown waterfront district, called the Porto Maravilha, will include two new museums, the Rio Art Museum and the Museum of Tomorrow. The Brazilian Symphony Orchestra will perform soon in their new home, the Cidade das Artes. And on Copacabana Beach, the Museum of Image and Sound will soon break new ground.

For movie-goers, the late Oscar Niemeyer designed another new building, the Centro Petrobras do Cinema, to host Brazilian films. And for shoppers, the VillageMall recently opened, and will soon be home to Gucci and the first Apple Store in South America.

On July 23-28, the Catholic Church’s World Youth Day will take place in Rio, followed by the Rio Book Fair on August 29-September 8, and the Rock in Rio in September. At the last World Youth Day in Spain, over 2,000,000 attendees participated. The Rio de Janeiro International Book Fair will be held at the Riocentro Convention Centre in Barra da Tijuca. The Rock in Rio Festival will take place September 13-22, with a line-up including Metallica, Iron Maiden, Bruce Springsteen, Beyoncé, and John Mayer.

Get In Touch!

Interested in traveling to Rio de Janeiro in 2013? You can browse our Brazil Tours, or create your own Custom Brazil Tour. Just contact us and one of our travel consultants can help you plan a trip to Rio de Janeiro!