Congratulations! You’ve booked a trip to the Cidade Maravilhosa… Brazil’s “Marvellous City” and South America’s most popular City! Rio de Janeiro is no ordinary place, so you can’t just rock up to the City with ordinary items in your suitcase… there really are some essential items that you’ll need to take with you. Hopefully our packing list will help!

1. Your Favourite Rio de Janeiro Travel Guide

There’s only one Rio travel guide you’ll need… It’s 100% FREE, it’ll fit in your pocket, it’ll let you instantly book the best tours, it’ll give you personal Rio travel tips from a male & female perspective, it’ll tell you the top 20 restaurants, nightlife and attractions… We’re talking about Go To Rio of course !!

2. A Pair of Budgie Smugglers (for the gents)

Guys, seriously… You’ll stick out like a sore thumb if you show up to Copacabana Beach or Ipanema Beach with your oversized knee-length swimming shorts on. You might actually be laughed at – haha! Okay, we may be slightly exaggerating here, but if you really want to fit in with the Cariocas on the beach, it’ll be in your best interests to invest in a pair of speedos / budgie smugglers.

Whoa! Check these bad boys out…

3. A Thong Bikini (for the ladies, of course)

Girls, unfortunately that £100 swimsuit that you just bought with the Sugarloaf Mountain print all over it is not gonna cut it in Rio. Thong bikinis are standard beach wear for ladies of all shapes, sizes and ages strutting along the blazing-hot beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema.

Cheeky Thong Bikinis on Copacabana Beach
Cheeky Thong Bikinis on Copacabana Beach – You can buy your own one right now from Amazon


4. A Fold-Away Beach Chair

That’s right, there are no sun loungers on the beaches in Rio! Beach chairs are available to rent on Rio’s beaches – but we found that with 5 visits to the beach, we spent way more money on chair rentals than we would have spent if we actually bought 2 fold-away beach chairs ourselves!

Nat Sitting On a Fold-Away Beach Chair on Copacabana Beach
Nat Sunbathing (and dozing off) On a Fold-Away Beach Chair on Copacabana Beach
Lojas Americanas Store in Rio Sul Mall, Botafogo
Lojas Americanas Store in Rio Sul Mall, Botafogo – We Saw Beach Chairs Here for 34.99 Reais ($10 USD or £8)


5. A Pair of Havaianas Flip-Flops

Havaianas flip-flops are a must-have for your trip to Rio – they even have the Brazilian flag on them. They’re popular with men, women and children; and not only do they come in every colour under the sun to match any outfit, they’re not expensive either! Trust us, when you’re outside in the heat for 5 hours waiting to see the Christ the Redeemer statue, your feet will need to be in a pair of these!

6. A White Outfit (for new years eve)

On new years eve in Rio, over a million people descend on to Copacabana Beach donning their crispiest white outfits. If you’re travelling to Rio over this busy period, then don’t forget to pack your best white outfit for the biggest new year street party and fireworks display you’re likely to ever attend!

Nat and Mase: Donning Our White Outfits on New Years Eve in Copacabana
Nat and Mase: Donning Our White Outfits on New Years Eve in Copacabana


7. A GoPro Hero Action Camera

The GoPro Hero is one of the best purchases we’ve ever made and we used it every day during our time in Rio. Not only did we strap it to our heads and record the breathtaking scenery as we cycled around Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon, but we also captured some amazing timelapses, which you can see for yourself right here…

Nat Setting Up the GoPro to Capture Christ the Redeemer and some Cloud Porn
Nat Setting Up our GoPro to Capture Christ the Redeemer and some Cloud Porn (video below)


8. A Zoom Lens for your Digital Camera

Don’t be like Mase and FORGET your zoom lens when you visit the tourist sites! Mase forgot to bring their zoom lens to Sugarloaf Mountain and Nat will never let him live this down, oops! When you reach the top of Corcovado Mountain, Urca Hill or Sugarloaf Mountain, you will want to take a million photos! You’ll feel awesome as you zoom in on planes and helicopters as they fly beneath you and the metropolitan cathedral also looks spectacular from above.

The Face of Christ the Redeemer Close Up - Zoomed In
The Face of Christ the Redeemer Close Up – Zoomed In with our 100mm-300mm Lumix Lens
Gold Detail on The Roof of the Municipal Theatre (Teatro Municipal) - Zoomed In
Gold Detail on The Roof of the Municipal Theatre (Teatro Municipal) – Zoomed In with our 100mm-300mm Lumix Lens


Plan Your Own Trip to Rio de Janeiro

The first thing you should do… Download our Free Go To Rio App for your iPhone, iPad, Android, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV Stick. This will help you to plan your entire trip – from giving you the top 20 restaurants, attractions, nightlife and top things to do in Rio de Janeiro, to giving you access to the best tours in the city.

We always look for the best deals when it comes to flights, accommodation and tours. Over the last 15 years of enjoying trips together, we’ve come to rely on a few providers that have saved us money and given us a great service…


  • – Excellent guided tours and all of the top things to do in Rio de Janeiro, hand-picked by local, English & Portuguese speaking tour guides.


  • Hotels Combined lets you search and compare the best hotel deals in Rio de Janeiro, from, Expedia, and more! With a choice of 527 Hotels in Rio, Expedia offers up to 60% Discount on selected Rio de Janeiro Hotels. We’ve been using Expedia since 2005 !! offers up to 70% Discount on many of their Hotels in Rio. We’ve been using since 2003 !!


  • KAYAK will get you up to 20% OFF your flight price by comparing flight prices on hundreds of websites including Expedia,, Opodo, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Emirates and more! Book a few months in advance and you’ll find cheap flights to Rio, with many international flights flying direct from major cities.


  • TravelSupermarket – Offering car rentals for as little as £2.60 per day (or $3.70 USD), TravelSupermarket finds you the cheapest and best deal by comparing car hire prices at Avis, Hertz, Sixt, Budget, Holiday Autos and more


  • World Nomads – Simple, flexible and affordable worldwide travel insurance which includes 24/7 emergency assistance before & during your trip, valuables protection, trip cancellation cover and more


  1. Very nice pics of Rio here, love the beach. Keep up the great work. Will share this.

  2. Great post, some awesome pics of Rio. This is definitely on my travel list after Se Asia.

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