Rio De Janeiro Nightlife
Home to Carnival, samba and the Copacabana, it's not surprising that the nightlife in Rio de Janeiro is one of a kind, and Cariocas (Rio's residents) will make a party out of just about any social gathering. Whether you're looking for a relaxing bar or lounge to sip on a couple of 'chopps' (draft beer), or you're in the mood for a big night out at a hip and happening dance club, Rio de Janeiro has it all.
A popular way to warm things up is to start off in the cooler early evening at one of the numerous beach bars for a coconut juice or cocktail. Head off to one of Rio de Janeiro's trendy beach communities, such as Copacabana, Ipanema or Leblon and explore the bars and clubs, but be warned, some of these places may not grant entry to people wearing shorts and T-shirts or flip-flops.
Head off to a trendy restaurant for a late dinner with friends and then at around 11pm, when most clubs open, check out who's playing at the Rio Scenarium, Comuna da Semente or Carioca da Gema. Lapa is a popular spot for revellers as well as Gamba.
Live music and dancing is also big in the entertainment scene in Rio de Janeiro and there is a wide variety, such as Samba, Bossa Nova, rock, MBP (Brazilian pop), blues, jazz and much more. If you search hard enough, there is sure to be a gig happening somewhere in this vibrant city on any given night. You can also watch Samba school rehearsal parties, where local drummers and dancers showcase their skills in warehouses for thousands of people. It's a great way to get a taste of the Carnival atmosphere at other times of the year.
Clubbing in Rio can be expensive, but you can have a cheaper night out by sticking to local drinks. Many clubs will charge you for drinks and entry only when you leave, so keep track of what you spend. Most clubs have a dress code, so t-shirts and flip flops aren't allowed. Each club is different: some will only allow men when accompanied by women, and most will require an ID or passport to enter.
Rio also has a vibrant gay clubbing scene, with many bars and
clubs in Copacabana and Ipanema, including Le Boy, La Girl, Dama da
Ferro, Fosfobox and The Week.
An alternative to clubs and bars in Rio are the street parties. Lapa hosts a street party every Friday and Saturday night near the aqueduct on Avenida Mem de Sá; and Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays are the best nights to head to Gávea, where you'll find music, cheap beer, and many university students on the street in front of the bar Hipódromo.
Pick up a copy of the Friday editions of the O Globo, O Dia or Jornal do Brasil newspapers for listing on nightlife and entertainment in Rio de Janeiro.
Become our Rio De Janeiro Travel Expert
We are looking for contributors for our Rio De Janeiro travel guide. If you are a local, a regular traveller to Rio De Janeiro or a travel professional with time to contribute and answer occasional forum questions, please contact us.
iExplore designs made-to-order, privately-guided adventure tours to Brazil and over 200 other world wonders. Come Back Different!
Intrepid Travel is one of the world's leading suppliers of small
group adventures focused on getting off the beaten track and having
real life experiences in Brazil.