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Rio de Janeiro - Brazil

Rio has a huge population of around 16 million people. And offers everything for the gay visitor. Apart from the gay life though there are one or two things you must do in this vibrant and beautiful city.

Get an all-round view of the city by taking a cable car to the peak of Sugar Loaf Mountain and also take the funicular railway up to Corcovado and stand next to the feet of the 100 foot statues of Christ The Redeemer (you might even wash them). For shopping the place is the downtown Rio Branco district.

Rio de Janeiro, the Marvelous City, is a destination that has always excited the imagination of the gay traveller. Falling in love with the city and the people is very easy. Cosmopolitan Cariocas (local people) are friendly with gays making you feel welcome almost everywhere. Language should not be a barrier. Most people you actually have to deal with understand basic English or Spanish. Others will try hard. And body language is universally understood, of course.

The beach is the perfect setting to make new friends, and find out what is going on. Go to Farme Gay in Ipanema, a little to the east of cross-street Farme de Amoedo. This is Posto No 8 (the beach is divided into sections or postos) This spot attracts local TV stars, gays international celebrities but, most of all, this is Barbie land. Barbie is a term used by locals to describe muscular and well-off gay men who live on the South Side. Don't miss the gay dodge-ball and volleyball matches on Sundays. You will find more ideas of things to do and see at Rio Gay by Day.

If you're not exactly a day person, night life is teeming with possibilities. Have dinner around 8 or 9 at world-class restaurants, and go for a round-up of gay bars and lounges in Ipanema or Copacabana. Around midnight move on to the dance clubs. In addition to the mandatory go-go boys, you will enjoy live shows, drag performances, and other specials. Circuit parties are a perfect alternative for weekend nights.

The party planner will help you decide what to do every night of the week. With the maps of gay attractions in Ipanema, Copacabana, and Arpoador-Posto 6 you will find your way around just like a local. For your convenience they also include hotels and flats, and you may check rates and request your booking online.
And then there's Carnival (around February/March) with the legendary Samba Parade, gay balls, and street festivities where hordes of drag queens literally take over the streets! New Year's is another major event. Two million people from all over the world celebrate at Copacabana Beach, with live music shows, and an incredible fireworks festival at midnight.

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