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Ilha Grande |© Rafael Vianna Croffi/Flickr
Ilha Grande |© Rafael Vianna Croffi/Flickr
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A Couple's Guide To Rio De Janeiro

Picture of Sarah Brown
Updated: 25 November 2016
Sensuality is the fabric of daily life in Rio de Janeiro. With skimpy clothes in the intense heat and the hip-shaking samba that courses relentlessly through the streets, it creates a charged atmosphere that is exciting and sexy to share as a couple, and also offers quieter moments for intense romance. Create some incomparable memories that you’ll share as a couple for years to come with our guide for couples in Rio.

Watch a Sunset

For a simple yet unforgettable date, watch one of Rio’s spectacular sunsets. After spending the day on Ipanema beach, wander over to Arpoador, the large rock that marks the beginning of Ipanema, and take a seat. The sun slowly descends next to Two Brothers Mountain, scattering shades of pinks and orange across the sea and sky. One of the other most rewarding spots to see the sunset is from the top of Sugarloaf Mountain after a journey over the sea on two cable carts. With panoramic views over the ocean and the city, it’s hard to imagine a more romantic scene.

Arpoador's sunset |© Deniltonlima/WikiCommons
Arpoador’s sunset | © Deniltonlima/WikiCommons

Go Out For a Meal

Any date that involves food is already off to a good start and Rio has plenty of fantastic restaurants to choose from. Have a romantic breakfast at Forte de Copacabana that includes a selection of various breakfast options. Based in Copacabana, the outdoor seating grants wonderful views over Copacabana’s shores. For a luxurious dining experience, try the restaurant at Copacabana Palace that serves some of the finest lunch and dinner options in Rio. Or, go old-school with a trip to the bakery Guerin to pick up some fluffy French bread, pop into a local supermarket to get some cheese, nuts, fruits and whatever else tickles your fancy, then head to Lagoa for a picnic next to the lake.

Breakfast at Forte de Copacabana |© pixabay
Breakfast at Forte de Copacabana | © pixabay

Visit a Motel

In Brazil, a motel is a place to have sex and is usually paid for by the hour with up to 24 hour stays available. It may sound seedy, but motels are a perfectly accepted and normal part of Brazilian life, and can be great fun for couple looking to try something different. Standard motels have hot tubs, a menu of sex toys and mirrored ceilings, yet some of the most glamorous ones have water slides, fancy food, poles for dancing and even a helicopter arrival. They are dotted all throughout the city in Rio and are identified by distinct signage.

A themed room |© Lush
A themed room | © Lush

Get Up High on Pedra Bonita

With a name that literally translates to ‘Pretty Rock’, it sounds like the ideal place for a romantic trip for two. This is one of the easiest hikes in Rio and is rewarded with one of the most outstanding views in the country. The large, table-flat surface at the top gives plenty of privacy to sit down and take in the views that sweep across the east zone of Rio to the south zone. Pedra Bonita is also the base point for paragliding for those couples that want an adrenaline rush together.

From the top of Pedra Bonita |© Mcalvet/WikiCommons
From the top of Pedra Bonita | © Mcalvet/WikiCommons

Visit a Paradise Island

Take a day trip from Rio and head a little further south of the state to Angra dos Reis. From there, take a short boat trip over to Ilha Grande (Big Island), an island just off the coast of Rio that is renowned for its paradisiacal settings and natural beauty. Here, you can spend a day or a lazy weekend — there are plenty of pousadas (small hotels) that provide a tranquil spot to rest up and enjoy being with your partner. Ilha Grande has stunning beaches with rich marine biodiversity, incredible hikes through jungles and beachside bars with tables that spill out onto the sand for a late-night romantic meal.