Aerial View of Copacabana © Breogan67
This famous Rio beach neighbourhood was just a small fishing village until a new highway built in the early 1900s brought crowds of visitors to these golden shores. The Copacabana Palace Hotel first opened its doors in 1923, and since then the area mushroomed with Neoclassical and Art Nouveau skyscrapers, penthouses, and apartments. Visitors still flock, as they have always done, to the glamorous Palace Hotel, which is the place to be seen, especially to have tea or a meal at the famed Cipriani restaurant.
The beach itself white sand and calm water and is festooned with kiosks. It is a popular spot for beach sports like soccer and volleyball, and a good place to sunbathe. Copacabana beach is particularly popular on New Year's Day. According to tradition, visitors dress in white and congregate here to celebrate in droves, with more than 2 million people crowding the beach.