I even hold an iPad at night without any troubles.
I was warned a million times about Rio de Janeiro. I also hear all kinds of terror about it daily (I'm a Brazilian). The first time I went there I was really scared, I wouldn't have gone if it weren't a work travel. On the first two days I barely would answer the cellphone on a public place, I was even scared of local business! But then I saw normal people walking, talking at night everywhere and I took the risk of walking at night. Nothing happened.
I also used the public transportation a lot and didn't see anything unusual. Then I went there again next year with my wife and we were so confident about the city that we could sit on the beach at night with our iPad.
We also walked a lot at nights and only using public transportation (taxi is too damn expensive).
The travel went smooth. Maybe we were lucky and maybe because we are brazilians we know what is dangerous or not around this country. (and we don't look like tourists).
Another thing I always do when travelling is to take a look at Google Street Vew in the Hotel before leaving so I never stop like a lost tourist in the middle of the street :]
- Budget Travel
- Business Travel
- Family Travel
Rio de Janeiro 2012 A.D.
I noticed a lot of these advices are kind of old and outdated. My wife and I, we recently visited Ipanema, Copacobana and Corcovado and the centre of Rio. Without being naive, goingout with lots of money, or late at night, or visiting favelas, or any other risky stuff, we had a great time. Rio changed, and is safer now than before. After our trip to Corcovado mountain, we passed through favelas that cleaned up pretty good. The only warning I would add: go to Cristo Redentor on a weekday, not the weekend, because the over abundance of tourists make it quite hard to get a good picture. Too many people there on a sunday. Over than that, enjoy Rio, stay smart and you will have a good time.
Thanks for the Rio Travel Tips
Now that I've read all the travel warnings and dangers, plus other blogs/articles, I have reconsidered my trip to Rio in August. If I have to go somewhere, and have to continually grow eyes in the back of my head, I certainly don't need to be there. There are too many other wonderful places in the world you can go without this stress.
When you can't even carry/pack a can of pepper spray/mace or a pocket knife without taking a chance of being thrown into a Draconian prison, why go? Yes, people say that there are other dangerous cities. Well, I've been to them and didn't have all the negativity.
To summarize, "any time you put the have's and the have not's together, you're going to have problems." I believe that Rio has many more have not's who will kill you for a nickel.
ALWAYS CARRY SUFFICIENT TRAVEL INSURANCE
RIO DE JANEIRO.
.When travelling through South America I always carried neccesary Travel Insurance everywhere that I went. . This is a really big country and not without its dangers. Especially once out of the major cities medical help is distant if you have an accident.
I always have sufficient travel insurance that will cover me and all hospital care in case something happens..I always include repatriation as well..when I'm travelling I really hate to think of something going wrong but we all know ...anywhere !...anytime.!..Mother Nature can even throw a tantrum. When formulating my travel plans along with visas etc. I make sure that travel insurance is high on my list in preparation.
I surely love to have peace of mind when Im on the road.. Remember what they say:
DONT LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT !!!
- Business Travel
- Road Trip
Walking in Rio at Night
Do not dress expensive clothes when you are walking and wondering around like everyone...jewels, expensive watches, ellegant clothes just for very important social events... NEVER COUNT YOUR MONEY LIKE YOU EAT BANANA, DO IT AND BE VERY DISCREET. AND REMEMBER you are not in a war zone, Rio has street gangs like NEW YORK AND LONDON, so we know that there are some parts of the city that you must avoid, and in the beach area the places tend to be safer and more patrolled.
- Arts and Culture
Like every major city, Rio has an area more dangerous than elsewhere, and a time when this is especially true. It may even be safe during the day, but becomes sinister after nightfall. Such areas are always well-known to locals, so get advice from a hotel, tourist office, or waitress. Most guidebooks include warnings about red light or seedy areas, but conditions may have changed since the information was written.
Another point is that just because other travelers say someplace is perfectly safe, that doesn't make it true. It may only means they didn't encounter problems. Local authorities and tourist offices cannot always be relied upon, either, as they may have an interest in minimizing problems, so you always need to use your eyes, ears, instincts, and best judgment, along with a few degrees of body lean towards safety, away from recklessness.
Rio is A LOT SAFER than you think : keep cool.
When I read your messages about Danger in Rio I am very sad and I feel quite angry about that. I have been living in Rio for 3 years, in the nice district of Santa Teresa. I am a 26 years old french guy and I have a "typical french looking". I have never suffered from any kind of robbery or attack in Rio. I go out at night several times a week and I have no fear to walk in any district of the city, at any time of the night or day... 40 friends and relatives visited me during these 3 years, and I never had to go to the PoliceStation with one of them. Never. New Year's Eve and Carnival including.
SO, I am quite fed up to read your messages, which frighten future visitors. I am a tour guide and I feel very sorry when tourists always ask me : Copacabana "is it safe?". Lapa? "is it safe?". Santa teresa "is it safe?". Maracana Stadium "is it safe?" come on ...
!!! YES IT IS !!!
Rio is an amazing city, with a wonderful people. Like EVERY big city in the world, you might be careful with your belongings and your behaviour. And everything is going to be fine. Rio suffers from a violent image because of its past, but most of people who visited the city didnt have problems and didnt complain at all. Yes of course some visitors might be robbed, but that happens also in Barcelona, Paris, New York, isn't it? I would like people to stop this paranoia thing that Rio is "the most dangerous city in South America". If you have this idea in mind when visiting the city, it will be written on your face "I am scared", and if I were a thief, for sure I will attack you! Keep cool and natural, just be "zen"! and it will be more than ok. Trust Me.
The City is making a lot of efforts to better the safety in Rio, and it is working quite well so far. Crimes are decreasing a lot thanks to a new Police Program called "UPP", which is a new Police Unit, pacifying the favelas/slums.
see below just to give you an example:
it says that murders decreased to 32% compared to 2009, that stolen cars decreased to 27,7% compared to 2000 and so on.
Come and Enjoy Rio, I am sure you will have a wonderful time in this city, which will be THE place to be in 2014 (final of the football world cup) and 2016 (Olympics Games).
"um forte abraço"
- Road Trip
- Historical Travel
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Santa Teresa - muggers on the look out
Me and my friend stayed in a hostel in Santa Teresa, beautiful looking area. But the problem is, is that it's fairly quiet and it is also very close to the favelas.
On our first day there, we went for a walk in broad daylight, and as soon as we were on a pretty much deserted part (there were only a few older ladies around), two guys came up to us holding a huge knife. and they started pulling at our bags. We weren't flashing anything valuable, I think the bag just screamed : take me!
Needless to say the next three days we were there we only took taxi's and we didn't want to set any foot in that area again, as we were pretty much traumatised.
Surprisingly enough a couple of hours later the police did find my bag, but of course my camera and (little) money was taken from it. The police later that day even brought 'a suspect' around our hostel in their car for us to identify.
I think you can NOT be careful enough walking around in that area esp when you are very european looking and are quite obviously a tourist... DO NOT take any bag, not even a plastic one (like was suggested by our hostel), IF you want to bring your camera put it in your pocket and make sure it's not visible you are carrying it. Also make sure you carry some money with you, little enough that could make a mugger satisfied, as they WILL use their weapon.
Rio. Santa Teresa neighborhood. Mugging!
Above Lapa, to the west, is the hilly Santa Teresa neighbourhood, with its narrow, winding streets, stone stairs and turn-of-the-century homes. A favorite among artists and intellectuals, Santa Teresa also hosts an annual arts festival. A nice way to visit the area is to take the scenic Bondinho de Santa Teresa (Santa Teresa streetcar), which has been in operation since 1896. (Don’t take along valuables or cameras—passengers are occasionally mugged.)
Just returned form a trip to Rio. My girlfriend and I were mugged in The Santa Teresa neighbourhood. We lost our camera and I was stabbed in the left shoulder.
Rio de Janeiro's downtown has always been associated with danger. During the week a lot of people go there to work on the many building companies. The neighbourhoods around are great places to shop. It is in this area that you can find the best prices. Of course it's a bit like the black market. It is normal to see the PM's (Policia Militar) getting into small fights with the "Camelos" (the street vendors). This generates sometimes some stress amongst the people passing by, but usualy it stops as fast as it began. It is though important for you to have your eyes wide open when you go to this area. On weekends and after 5 pm this is not a good area for a tourist to walk by. Everything is closed and the criminals take over the street. Also homeless people seek for protection under the building entrances and the parks.
On the steps of Candelaria church a massacre took place almost 11 years ago. Off the duty PM's shot against 9 of the 50 orphan street children that used to spend the night under the divine protection of the church. Of the "Meninos da Candelaria" (Candelaria Children) only 1 survided. The other ran and never came back to sleep there again. On the following years 39 of them had violent deaths. The one that survided, Wagner dos Santos, got Witness Protection and inspired the movie "Cidade de Deus". Until today only 3 PM's were arrested and one suspect died on the way to court. The case is still not close.
Anyway, go downtown only during weeks days and with company. Keep your eyes always open! And maybe leave a flower on Candelaria's steps.
- Women's Travel
Rio de Janeiro, a place to avoid
I have just reread most of the posts under dangers and warnings re: Rio de Janeiro. The postings are almost funny. Who in the hell would go to a place like that and the Olympics are scheduled there. I have been going to Rio for fifty years and it is a great place if you stay in your room. When are the Brazilians going to wise up and clean up the City so that tourists can visit it. I was there about fifty years ago and you could actually walk down the street then. Amazing. If you do that today, you are gambling. Brazil, Wake up. Tom Raven
Level of Danger in Rio is high
I have been to Rio for extended visits a number of times. It amazes me that the Brazilians have yet to clean up the crime in Rio especially with the Olympics coming there. If they dont clean it up soon, the Olympics will have to go elsewhere. I am an older guy and in Rio, I have a bullseye on my back. I don't go out, unless it is absolutely necessary. Very disappointed that Brazil hasn't fixed this problem. No need to list the crimes. We all know what they are. Tom Raven
Be aware when you decide to go to Rio that not all the time this beautiful city is fun, go during Brazilian summer, December, January, February, if you want to observe Brazilian life, blend with the locals and have fun. We went in APRIL, the weahter was awful, rain, heavy, wind, black clouds, we did not see almost anything, no Corcovado / it is closed for 4 to 6 months now/, no Centro, no Santa Teressa / there was half meter water in Centro/, we were locked in Copacabana and Ipanema, but there was not a lot of fun on the beach, no samba in the evening along Copa....so we slept, ate and payed too much money for it.
The only possible sightseeing was Sugar loaf, apart from the deserted beach.
The weather is everyhwhere a risc to spoil a holiday, but expecially in Rio it is danger.
handbag theft from bar copacabana beach
In less than 2 hours of arriving in Rio my wife had her handbag stolen ! despite taking precautions!
This is how it happened we arrived at our hotel 11:00 am and our room wasnt going to be available until 3pm, so we decided to go down to a beach bar for lunch. We located ourselves outside Henry's bar Copacabana beach (they made a real fuss about us!) we were a party of 4 and within minutes the beach vendors were round us like flies we had a laugh with them and did make a small purchase.
The vendors kept coming all the time during the meal and sometime's as many as 4 were round us ! which as you can imagine is very distracting.
When we came to leave is when we discovered that my wife's bag had gone "the staff at Henry's all of a sudden dont understand English any more!"
After taking advice from our rep. my wife had removed her quality watch and bracelet and put them in her handbag!!! she also lost credit cards and a small amount of cash.
We did hear of other thefts from people from our cruise ship.
The Police showed little interest and were more concerned about reading their books and eating apples.
My summary on Rio is - the beaches are nice if you dare go near them ! Sugar Loaf Mountain was worth a trip but as for the rest I wouldnt touch it with a BARGE-POLE !
- Food and Dining
Personal Possessions and Rio
Yes, like most others have said, definitely don't take your cherished electronics to the beach, unless you're someone you know, and even then, it's not guaranteed it won't get stolen. This wasn't at Ipanema, but I actually brought my I-Pod with me when I walked around Botafogo neighborhood and didn't come across any incidents. (I need my music after all). But of course, don't take such a relaxed attitude as I did. It can vary from tourist to tourist. I had a great time in Rio!