Olha que coisa mais linda,
Mais cheia de graça
É ela menina
Que vem que passa
(The Girl From Ipanema, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Norman Gimbel, Vinicius De Moraes)
Rio de Janeiro is most famous for its picture perfect beaches, mostly Copacabana and Ipanema.
Copacabana stretches for 4.5 km along the Atlantic Ocean. Myth number one: it is not the best place to swim. The beach is quite dirty and you may find all kind of garbage floating on the water. However, Copacabana is the best place for people-watching, coconut-drinking and dulce de leche churros eating. It´s also the place where rich and poor have the same activities: volley-ball on the beach, sunbathing… favelas kids or posh teens look alike in a swimsuit, and the beach is free!
A bit further is the posh Ipanema. Located in a rich neighborhood, the beach attracts the young and beautiful, as well as a fair share of tourists.
Ipanema is also one of the only place in the world where you feel extremely overdressed wearing a skirt and a tee-shirt. Although topless sunbathing would be considered extremely indecent, girls of all shapes and all ages wear what are probably the tiniest bikinis on the planet! Go figure…