Museums, art house cinemas, sea, sky, and Sugarloaf Mountain stand out in this south Rio neighborhood.

Lush tree coverage gives way to sandy beaches and sailboat-speckled seascapes in Botafogo. This neighborhood’s bayside location prevents its water from being as crystal clear as nearby Copacabana’s, but Botafogo makes up for its murkiness with breathtaking vistas of sea, sky, and Sugarloaf Mountain. More reserved than all-night neighborhoods like Ipanema, Botafogo is filled with traditional avenues of entertainment—museums, cafes, art house cinemas, and a commercial shopping complex complete Botafogo’s laid-back repertoire.

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On the Map

Botafogo is bordered by Humaitá, Laranjeiras, Lagoa, Flamengo, Leme, Cosme Velho, Copacabana, Santa Teresa, and Urca

Galeão International Airport: 25 minutes by cab without traffic
Santos Dumont Domestic Airport: 15 minutes by cab without traffic
Lapa: 15 minutes by cab or 35 minutes by bus
Corcovado's Train Station: 10 minutes by cab or 34 minutes by bus
Sugar Loaf Cable Car: 7 minutes by cab or 15 minutes by foot

  • Public transit is Easy
  • Having a car is Possible

Stunning Views and a Central Location

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Edging along Guanabara Bay, Botafogo boasts front-row seats to Rio de Janeiro's enchanting scenescapes.

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Like neighboring Flamengo, Botafogo is a busy no-nonsense neighborhood.

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Its residents work hard, run errands, and always remember to admire the view.

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Botafogo is a very safe and well located area of the city, between the party area and the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. Taking the metro we were at the beach in around 15 minutes. And by taxi more or less the same time."


Visited in 2015

Botafogo's Evolving Economy

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In Botafogo, professional workers mingle with hourly-wage earners.

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And corporate giants contrast with charming cottages.

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Although Botafogo shares Flamengo's pragmatism, the neighborhoods differ in their residential sensibilities.

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While Flamengo is filled with apartment complexes, Botafogo's residential streets are overwhelmingly more whimsical.

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With a high concentration of cafés and cinemas, including several movie theaters that feature arthouse films, Botafogo has a decidedly traditional tone, connected to nearby neighborhoods such as Copacabana and Ipanema. It is home to two of the city's largest shopping centers: Rio Sul and Botafogo Praia Shopping."

Commercial Conveniences In Botafogo

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Brazilians adore shopping malls. Luckily, Botafogo boasts three of them.

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When it's time to exchange commercial complexes for uncomplicated convenience shops, Botafogo boasts those, too.

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Centrally Located Counter-Culture

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Botafogo won't stay up all night, but its bars and cafes stay busy during the evening hours.

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This neighborhood is known for its alternative aptitude.

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After dinner, drinks, and sidewalk conversation, Botafogo residents can catch an independent film at its art house cinema.

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In Botafogo, empty seats are open invitations.

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Won't you stay awhile?


Airbnb works with local photographers to capture the spirit of neighborhoods all around the world. The photography on this page includes work by:

Andre Joaquim

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Andre is both a dentist and photographer, living in Rio de Janeiro. He has a huge passion for Rio, and after shooting this project for Airbnb, he is certain that there is no place as beautiful as the city placed between the mountain and the sea.

Fabio Blaser

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Fabio Blaser is a Swiss photojournalist based in Rio de Janeiro. Before moving to Brazil, he graduated from the University of Plymouth in the UK. When not behind his camera, he enjoys the beaches, waterfalls, rainforest and Brazilian way of life. He loved the opportunity to shoot the wonderful tropical city that he is privileged to call home for Airbnb.

Sam Comen

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Sam Comen is a 32-year-old bon-vivant and LA native who counts Esquire, Details, Rolling Stone, and The Wall Street Journal among his clients. He has been awarded national grants and honors for his long-term portrait essays. On assignment in Rio de Janeiro for 11 days with Airbnb, Sam came to love and admire the city's environment, natural splendor, and the Cariocas' easy-going attitude.