Just thinking of Rio de Janeiro makes me want to party. No kidding. Mention Rio and I’ll immediately want to samba, kick a soccer ball, head to the beach, play a little roadside Capoeira, and snap an Instagram photo underneath any large statue of Christ I can find.
And that’s just it. Rio is synonymous with fun, sports, adventure, and sweeping beauty. It’s a place you’ll visit once, and then again, and again, and a—well, you get the picture.
And whether you plan on visiting to experience a festival, short vacation, family reunion, or sightseeing, the first question you must ask yourself is: When exactly is the best time to visit Rio de Janeiro anyways?
Enjoy Rio’s Peak Season During the Summer
Listen, the best time to visit Rio is anytime. Seriously, Rio’s weather sits between a soothing 70° and 90° all year long, meaning you can get to any one of its beaches in any season.
December through February—considered summer months (Dec. – Mar.)—are the warmest months of the year in Rio, with temperatures averaging highs of 85°-90° and lows of 74°-76°.
For the wanderlust traveler that loves touring cities with crowds, summer months are also peak season in Rio, so expect swarms of tourists by your side as you explore the Christ the Redeemer statue, Copacabana Beach, Sugar Loaf Mountain, the iconic Escadaria Selarón stairway, and of course, Carnival, which takes place every February/March.
B-u-t, let’s not forget: Summer months in Rio—especially December and January—also receive the highest amount of rain throughout the year, average 9-12 rainy days each. Of course, that won’t have the slightest effect on your ability to bring in Christmas or party on New Year’s Eve in Rio!
Fall is the Perfect Time for Festivals and Exploration
Fall months in Rio are April through June. Fresh off the end of summer’s rain showers, these months are considered some of the best times of the year to visit Rio if you’re looking for great temperatures, less rain, and a “quieter” trip with thinner crowds.
The best things to do in Rio during spring are to attend the international, open-to-the-public Rio Boat Show in April, the Shell Open Air Festival in May, and partake in Rio de Janeiro Marathon and the Bonfire Festival in June.
Winter in Rio is Very ‘Chill’
Rio’s winter months—July through September—are the “coolest” of the year and receive very little rainfall. Temperatures generally lie in the mid-high 70s during the day, but by night, you’ll need to grab a light jacket and sweater as levels drop into the chilly sixties.
With that, winter in Rio is the perfect time to hangout on Ipanema Beach, surf, watch the sunset from Corcovado, attend the Brazilian Grand Prix Horse Race in August, and celebrate Independence Day on September 7th.
Spring is Perfect for Nature, Hiking, and Scenic Views
September to November are spring months in Rio, which means visitors can enjoy low humidity, little to no rain, and temperatures of about 75°-80°.
During this time, you’ll find it best to explore Rio’s natural landscape. Pay a visit to the botanical garden or go hiking at Tijuca National Park. There are also plenty of mountains that provide sweeping views of Rio from miles above the city, like Mirante Dona Marta and Pedra Bonita.
So, What’s Your Next Adventure?
Well, looks like Rio de Janeiro is a great place to visit any time of year. You’ve got great weather all year round, and plenty of amazing attractions to see and memorable things to experience. Now that you know what to expect, the next question is: What’s the first thing you’re planning to do after you arrive in Rio? Safe and happy travels!