Nightlife Guide: The Top 10 Bars in Bohemian Lapa

Lapa Arches
Lapa Arches | © Publius Vergilius/Riotur/Flickr
Sarah Brown

Lapa is at the center of Rio de Janeiro’s nightlife. What was once a rundown, crime-riddled part of town is now a thriving hub of bars and clubs which still maintains its edgy, historic appeal. Lapa embraces the vibrant dance culture that has defined Rio’s image over hundreds of years, with some of the most authentic samba venues in the city. Here are some of our favorite bars in Lapa.

1. Leviano Bar

Bar, Brazilian

Leviano Bar |© Lapa La na/Flickr
© Lapa La na/Flickr
Set inside a rennovated mansion, Leviano Bar breathes music with regular nights of live samba, forro, MPB(Brazilian pop music) and international pop hits. Many party-goers head here early to enjoy the ample range of satisfying snacks such as cheese-laden, homemade fries washed down with a chilled beer. Others show up later to make the most of the a musical playlist that gets even the most timid on the dancefloor.

2. Lapa Café

Restaurant, Cafe, Brazilian, Fast Food, Vegetarian, Vegan

Lapa Cafe
© Alexandre Macieira | Riotur/Flickr
Lapa Café was once an historic mansion that was rennovated into an cultural space and bar. The art gallery inside opens up to display art exhibitions and host live shows that can be appreciated while enjoying the simple yet delicious menu and drinks on offer. It is a popular haunt for beer lovers who come to enjoy some of the over-400 national and international beer labels on the menu.

Rio Scenarium

One of the main bars responsible for revitalizing the once crumbling Lapa, Rio Scenarium is the region’s most frequented bar. Its lavishly decorated walls of antiques create a sophisticated interior, yet the live shows of samba, forro and MPB create a carefree and fun atmosphere. It also has a wonderful gastronomical edge with a diverse menu and imported beers.

Rio Scenarium, R. do Lavradio, 20 – Centro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, +55 21 3147 9000

3. Bar da Boa

Restaurant, Bar, Pizzeria, Brazilian

Bar da Boa
© Lapa Lá na/Flickr
A former 19th century mansion provides the space for Bar da Boa, a bar built on the concept of an Antarctica brewery. The retro imagery on the walls and the spacious area for seating provides a comfortable setting for listening to live samba bands that perform every weekend. There is a wide range of beer on the menu that come under the Antarctica labeling, in addition to caipirinhas and various typical Brazilian snacks.

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