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Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon (Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas)
Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon (Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas)

Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon (Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas)

Free admission
Avenida Epitácio Pessoa

The Basics

No visit to Rio would be complete without visiting this picturesque spot. Many sightseeing tours combine a stop at the lake with top attractions such as Copacabana, Ipanema, Christ the Redeemer, and Sugarloaf Mountain. If visiting independently, you’ll find bikes available for rent at several points around the lake. Canoe and swan boat rentals also give you the chance to take in the scenery from the water.

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Rio de Janeiro Helicopter Tour
Rio de Janeiro Helicopter Tour
$179.11 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Amazing!!!
This trip was amazing! The view from the helicopter of monte Christo as well as the city was more than we could have imagined! Didn’t have to fight any crowds and we were treated like royalty the whole time! I highly recommend!!!
Elizabeth_W, Dec 2018

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Remember to pack comfortable clothes and walking shoes for a walk or jog around the lagoon.

  • Bring along a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen, especially if you plan to get out on the water.

  • On the outskirts of the lagoon, you’ll find kiosks selling fresh coconuts, cold drinks, and classic Brazilian street food.

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How to Get There

The lagoon is within easy walking distance of Leblon, Ipanema, Copacabana, and Jardim Botânico. If you’re coming from further afield, it’s best to take a taxi. The closest metro stations are Jardim de Alah and Nossa Senhora da Paz.

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When to Get There

The lagoon is at its liveliest in the late afternoon, when locals come out for after-work recreation. Visit in the evening hours for cocktails and live music along the shore. It’s one of the best spots to watch sunset in Rio.

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History of Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon

Named for a young Portuguese army official who lived in the area in the early 1700s, the glassy lagoon has a much less placid history. The first Portuguese settler in the area, Rio governor Antonio Salema, slaughtered the indigenous Temoio Indians with smallpox-infected clothing when he arrived on the scene in 1575 to build a sugar mill. Subsequent conquests have been as recent as the 1960s, when residents of a favela built on a neighboring hillside were forcibly removed and the hill, along with the ramshackle dwellings, was flattened to make way for some of the high-class high-rises that exist today.

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