Popular and trendy clubs and bars are mainly located in the Zona Sul area. Club entry fees often include a drink and a minimum purchase required. Whilst there is generally no strict regulations concerning dress code, Cariocas take pride in their appearance, so expect high standards at the fancier venues.
LOW PRICE RANGE: FAVELLA PARTIES
Favelas (shanty towns), usually risky places to visit unaccompanied, have sprung to life as new party venues offering fresh musical trends notably Fuck Carioca; an edgy bass-heavy style of music that emerged in the favelas in the 1980s. Favela parties offer an unconventional view of the city and an opportunity to experience “real” Rio.
Alto Vidigal- notorious for its wild parties and breathtaking views is located at the top of the Vidigal community. In recent years, since the pacification rules have changed, Vidigal has become a hotspot for “Gringos” (foreigners) with even David Beckham and Madonna owning houses in the area. There are weekly favela parties and the venue has an open bar; offering drinks, munchies and live DJs playing beats. Playing the hits of house, world music, reggaeton and funk. Come and enjoy the environment, music and stunning views.
Address: Rua Armando de Almeida Lima, 2, Vidigal
Entrance Fee: R$50
Located at the top of the Tavares Bastos favela lies The Maze. An art gallery, bed and breakfast and show house with the most picturesque view of Sugar Loaf Mountain, Guanabara Bay and a Western-inspired architecture. Tucked behind the Catete neighbourhood, with its cool underground feel and secret spot resembles a hidden club in New York. The favela hosts monthly jazz parties and headlines a great list of DJs. With guitars playing and harbour lights twinkling- this place makes for a magical night.
Address: Rua Tavares Bastos, 414, casa 66, Catete
Entrance Fee: RSVP on Facebook: R$25- On the door: R$50
MID PRICE RANGE: BARS & CLUBS
This long-standing local Santa Teresa boteco (bar) attracts a loyal following from across the city with customers often overflowing onto the opposite street. Bar Mineiro boasts of award-winning cuisine, specializing in food from the state of Minas Gerais. The chilled beer, delicious food and friendly atmosphere are its selling point. Try the feijoada (black bean stew) for an authentic taste of Brazil.
Address: Rua Paschoal Carlos Magno 99, Santa Teresa
Price Range: R$40-60
One of Rio's most famous botecos with several scattered around town. Belmonte has long been a favourite for 30-something Cariocas. Lively and reasonably priced. Belmonte is the perfect refuge for enjoying a bottle of chopp (draught beer). An easy-going atmosphere where you can drink on the calcada on the beach, mix with the local crowd, enjoy a caipirinha or grab a quick mid-week bite. Belmonte really comes alive at the weekends and is well worth a visit.
Address: Rua Domingos Ferreira 242-Copacabana, Rua Dias Ferreira 521-Leblon
Price Range: R$40-60
BEST FOR DANCE & MUSICFosfobox
Targeted to a young crowd, Fosfobox is Carioca's finest sweat box-a bunker of electronic music and filthy rock n roll. One of the few underground clubs in the heart of Zona Sul, Fosfobox has a wide range of National and International DJs from the Carioca Tech guru Mari Duarte to pop artist Debra Dinha. Everything from indie-rock to goth to hip hop and gay goes. Expect an edgy and industrial vibe.
Address: Shop 23 and 24-Rua Siqueira Campos, 143, Copacabana
Entrance Fee: RSVP on Facebook: R$30 On the door: R$50
Head Downtown to experience out of the world music, a breathtaking dance club and hot crowds. The Week-quoted “The Best dance club in the world” is the number one dance spot for the Carioca gay community. With two dance floors (Pop-floor and Electronic-floor), the venue is spacious, the atmosphere electric and the sound system loud. The pool area outside is perfect for unwinding.
Address: Rua Sacadura Cabral, 154
Entrance Fee: R$40-80
UPSCALE BARS & CLUBS
If you want to mingle with the Brazilian “gente bonito” (beautiful people) you'll want to make upscale Rio de Janeiro bars and clubs your first stop.
Bringing London to Ipanema. For late nights out, head to Londra in hotel Fasaco located in the heart of Ipanema beach. Londres is a watering hole for the best, brightest and most beautiful in Rio. Dress to impress and arrive just before midnight to avoid queuing. Try Rosemary Tonic for a taste of Britain.
Address: Avenida Vieira Souto, 80-Ipanema
Price Range: R$150+