5 days in Rio and Ihla Grande

I landed in Rio de Janeiro end of October to spend a few days in the city I fell in love with whilst watching the Olympics during the summer. Here’s a quick summary of my 5 days in Rio and Ihla Grande.

3 days in Rio

I stayed in a rather standard hostel perfectly located in Ipanema: El Misti hostel. In 3 days I had time to:

  • Discover Rio thanks to a free tour from downtown Rio to the Selaron steps in Lapa (with Free Walkers tour). Price = whatever you like!

Selaron Steps - Lapa

  • Stroll along Ipanema and Copacabana beaches admiring the surfers fighting the cold winds and the cariocas showing off while exercising

Ipanema - sunset

  • Take two cable cars to the Sugar Loaf to enjoy the beautiful view on the bay (and the airport!). Price = R$ 76

View from Sugar Loaf

View from Sugar Loaf

  • Take pictures of 30-meters-tall Jesus Christ lying down on the floor. Price = R$ 56


But also expose my white skin during one afternoon on the Ipanema beach, have a nice dinner in a fancy restaurant (Via Sete) in Leblon, drink too many caipirinhas de maracuja and eat too many pastels di quejo (so greasy but so good!)

Tip: Use Uber to move from one place to the other. It’s cheap, you will meet locals and friends of mine that leave there said it was safer than actual cabs!

2 days in Ihla Grande

Bumpy shuttle and ferry rides (booked from our hostel) took me to paradise: the stunning car and road-free island of Ihla Grande! My first afternoon in paradise was spent on the beautiful beach of Praia de Lopes Mendes where a taxi-boat took me in a ride I will never forget. (Price =  R$ 150) To reach the beach, I first had to walk for about 15 minutes in the tropical forest where I met cute little monkeys!



Praia de Lopes Mendes

After a very nice meal on the beach and a very good night and breakfast at Pousada Casablanca, I walked to the small beach of Praia da Julia where I sunbathed and swam nearly alone! Unfortunately it rained in the afternoon and the day after it was already time to leave 😦 I wish I could have stayed longer!


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