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Areas to stay in Rio de Janiero and Buenos Aires

Areas to stay in Rio de Janiero and Buenos Aires

Old May 11th, 2015, 04:40 PM
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Areas to stay in Rio de Janiero and Buenos Aires

A group of us are going to Brazil in September. We're landing in Rio and making our way to Buenos Aires. These cities are so huge that we can't decide which area to stay in. What area do y'all recommend we stay in?

Were thinking of booking Air BnB for cheaper rates but I'm also wondering if we should book a hotel for safety reasons. Thanks in advance!
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Old May 12th, 2015, 02:49 AM
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Many Rio apartment buildings have doormen/security, but no particular safety issues (over a hotel) if in a reasonable neighborhood in the Zona Sul (and if you don't do anything risky like inviting strangers to stay, which most hotels prohibit--There are "motels" to use for that.) Hotel front desk staff may be more helpful for someone new to the city, though. And there may be occupancy limits for AirBnB aptos.if you are a larger group. Beach neighborhoods in Zona Sul include Copacabana, Arpoador, Ipanema and Leblon. Most tourist hotels are there. You can also look at Botafogo, Laranjeiras, Catete, Gloria, but close to a metro stop.
If your trip is in September, apply for your visas, if you need them, ASAP.
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Old May 12th, 2015, 04:25 AM
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I agree with the previous poster that you definitely need to stay in Rio's Zona Sul, which is located right along the beach. While Copacabana is probably the most cultural ubiquitous of these three areas, and more affordable than posher areas like Ipanema and Leblon, you'll probably feel safer staying in the latter two and particularly in upmarket Leblon, which is by the far the most "local" area of the Zona Sul, even if it tends to be the most expensive.

To save on Rio accommodation, no matter which neighborhood you choose, consider using Hipmunk. Hipmunk aggregates hundreds of options from around the Web, from hotels, to Airbnb apartments to hostels. Moreover, Hipmunk maps out hotels for you, allowing you to first choose based on location, then click through to find out more about whether a particular hotel is right for you. Previous guest reviews help you make your decision not only about the quality of the hotel but also, in some cases, about each hotel's overall security.

Speaking of security, most accommodations in the Zona Sul, even hostels and guest houses, have on-site security. You should also keep in mind that while violent crime is always possible in Brazil, you're much more at risk for simple pickpocketing, so the best way to keep yourself safe is to be vigilant. If you do go out at night – and let's face it, you probably will – carry only a small amount of cash and leave all your other belongings behind.
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Old May 12th, 2015, 05:13 AM
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Regarding safety by neighborhood in Zona Sul beach areas, "feel" safer is the accurate way to describe the situation. Leblon might 'look' more like what foreign tourists are used to at home, leading to some 'perceived' idea of added safety. Copacabana is a middle class neighborhood full of tourist hotels, and with a bustling main street from early morning well into the night. The Zona Sul beach neighborhoods are all backed by hills on which are favelas. the same favelas in which the hotel maids and the beach kiosk guys live. Either Copacabana or Leblon (or Ipanema as well)is a good choice for a beach vacation stay, as are the others I mentioned if budget and not beach are a priority. More about keeping safe in Rio has to do with your own behavior, not calling attention to yourself (this does not mean dressing like a bum however or some vain attempt at 'looking local') to become a victim of opportunistic crime such as grab-and-run or pickpocketing.
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Old May 12th, 2015, 05:18 AM
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That accomodations app recommends staying in the very difficult to access Santa Teresa (taxis don't like climbing the steep hill and the bondinho trolley is still not working afaik, and side streets can be dodgy) and features a hotel in centro, which is not a particularly busy (and therefore potentially less safe) area outside of business hours, so I dquestion its value.
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Old May 12th, 2015, 05:51 AM
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I slept in the Copacabana area in Rio. I don't think I would have necessarily felt safer in Ipanema or Leblon, but my area (it was five or six blocks back from the beach) was safer than it had been a few years previously because a police car had taken to parking on the corner. Closer to the beach would feel safer.

In BsAs I had initially wanted to sleep in the San Telmo area, and was talked out of it on this board. I wound up sleeping in Palermo (at the Duque, highly recommended) and after seeing San Telmo was glad I had taken the advice. Retiro is often mentioned as a good area to say.

You do need to be alert and careful in both cities. I had no difficulty in Rio, but I was hit with the "black water" scam in BsAs - although it was yellow goo in my case. Since I knew the scam the would-be pick-pocketers were unsuccessful. Friends were also hit with the same scam while I was in BsAs, and I met a woman who had her purse and neck pouch stolen outside the Retiro cemetery. Wear a money belt, and don't access it in public. Leave the bling at home.

I like booking.com for hotel reservations.
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Old May 12th, 2015, 09:09 AM
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Neck pouch with strap visible around neck and purse with cut-ably thin strap, full of tempting possibilities? Just asking to be robbed IMO.
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Old May 21st, 2015, 10:51 AM
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Hi,
In Buenos Aires you should definitely stay in Palermo or Recoleta. San Telmo is very nice on Sundays when there is a large crafts fair, but the rest of the time it is not so safe. Recoleta is more of an upscale, older people area. Palermo is more relaxed and has many bars and shops.
Palermo is a large area. Look for places in Palermo "Hollywood" or "Soho", preferable near the subway (line D) which runs on Santa Fe Avenue. There are plenty of nice hotels there.
Have a great trip!
Aurelia
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Old May 30th, 2015, 07:16 AM
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Palermo Botanico would be the neighborhood closest to Recoleta , you can walk from one to the other. This is a family area with schools and parks, gardens ( Japanese & Botanical ) and the Zoo which is not so great.

Lovely neighborhood.

Recoleta is next to Palermo Botanico .. museums, parks and just a beautiful area. you can't go wrong with either of these and they are best in my opinion if you want to be able to walk more than take taxis or buses.

San Telmo is great but a taxi ride. Go there but I think on a vacation trip, it is not that convenient at all.

Have fun.
I am homesick for BA : )
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