Ipanema Beach picture
Marcia Rosa/Getty Images

Key Info

Avenida Vieira Souto

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Beaches, Free Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.4scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 3.0Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

Made famous by the well-known bossa nova song, "The Girl from Ipanema," this beach has drawn tourists since the 1960s. The 2-mile stretch of sand boasts gorgeous mountain views, beautiful Brazilians and cobalt waters. While sunbathing, you'll observe wildly entertaining games of futevolei (the Brazilian version of volleyball without hands) and smell fresh shrimp grilling nearby on skewers.

Cariocas will tell you that Ipanema's vibrant atmosphere is the place to see and be seen, so it's tailor made for people-watching. Catch locals playing frescobol, a tennis-like game without a net played with wooden paddles, or venture off the sand for an even bigger taste of local culture at nearby restaurants, shops and art galleries.

You can access the beach from the Ipanema neighborhood in Zona Sul. The beach is divided into areas known as postos (lifeguard stands). Ipanema reaches roughly from postos 8 to 12, with each stand offering changing rooms and restrooms for a small fee. Keep in mind Ipanema is one of the most popular beaches and is always crowded, so it can be difficult to find a spot in the sand during Rio's peak season (December to March). 

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