Rio De Janeiro is just an amazing place and that's that!I don't think I was quite expecting such a vibrant mix of beach, city, shops, buildings and more beach! There is so much to explore in this wonderful place that I would have like to have stayed a week longer. But I am a sun lover so the beaches were where it was at for me and they are exactly how you imagine them to be. Lots of women leaving very little to the imagination and men flexing their muscles. There are also lots of beach gyms and people playing volleyball. I read a lot about people being nervous on the beach because of pick pockets and criminal activity. It's not worse than any other beach in Europe. Just keep your wits about you, don't take stupid amounts of money and expensive technology with you, then you'll be fine.
I stayed in the Ipanema region of the city which is popular with tourists as it is slightly cheaper than staying near the Copacabana. Having said that accommodation is pretty pricey wherever you go. I stayed in the Lighthouse Hostel which was friendly and reasonably priced. The kitchen is quite small but I visited in low season so there weren't that many people there using it. Also you can arrange an airport pick up through the hostel if you are arriving late, otherwise there is an airport bus which goes frequently along the beach which is good. In the city there are also tours to the Favelas which you can go on but I thought that was a bit odd so didn't do it. I did go to a football match at the Maracana Stadium which was brilliant.
Plus you have Sugarloaf mountain, the 'big jesus' as I call it - otherwise known as the Christ the Redeemer statue and the colourful steps 'Escadaria Selaron'. I really enjoyed the juice drink called Acai juice made out of the berries. It's lovely. It's got quite an unusual flavour so It's not to everyones taste.
Rio is a laid back but vibrant city. So much going on, so colourful and just amazing.