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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Sugarloaf Mountain (Pao de Acucar)

Scale this mountain on foot or by cable car to see impressive views of Rio’s beaches, rain forests and its most famous statue.

Located on the coast of the southeastern corner of Rio de Janeiro, Sugarloaf Mountain (Pão de Açúcar) resides within forests, water and hills at the edge of Guanabara Bay. Rock climbers conquer the mountain using appropriate gear, but most visitors take the glass-sided cable car to the top. Originally built in 1912, the cable car transports 65 visitors per trip and offers panoramic views the entire way.

Sugarloaf Mountain offers remarkable views of nearby beaches, local rain forests, adjacent hills and the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue. The lush rain forests provide a sharp contrast against the surrounding granite hills. Historians attribute the mountain’s name to the 16th-century practice of molding sugar into a cone-like shape. These “sugar loaves” were common during the peak of Brazil’s sugarcane trade.  

The mountain draws crowds year-round, but the best times to visit are each day early in the morning and 90 minutes before sunset. Make sure you have clear skies and bring your camera to capture Rio’s scenic beauty from 1,300 feet (396 meters) above sea level. Right beneath you is Copacabana Beach, which connects to Ipanema Beach at its southern end. To the west, enjoy views of Rio’s iconic member of the “New Seven Wonders of the World,” the Christ the Redeemer statue.

Cable cars depart every 20 minutes from morning until evening. Before reaching the top, you will board two cable cars. One stops at Morro da Urca and the other stops at the peak, Pão de Açúcar. Be sure to check with the ticketing office if you visit during major holidays as cable-car trips typically close around noon on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve and close completely on Christmas and New Year’s Day. If visiting between December and March, be prepared for the cable car to close early on weekend evenings to accommodate seasonal performances.  

Access to Sugarloaf Mountain is from Praia Vermelha at the southern entry to Guanabara Bay. You can walk to Guanabara Bay from nearby Copacabana Beach, or use boat or bus if you are coming from farther afield.


Guide to Exploring around Sugar Loaf Mountain


Top Sugar Loaf Mountain Flight + Hotel Deals

Best Lodging Options Near Sugar Loaf Mountain

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Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro CA $128
Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro

Hilton Copacabana Rio de Janeiro

Avenida Atlantica, 1020, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
     
    5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Copacabana, this beachfront hotel is in the entertainment district and within 2 mi (3 km) of Copacabana Beach and Sugar Loaf Mountain. Museum of Modern Art and Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden are also within 6 mi (10 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 11 minutes by foot and Siqueira Campos Station is 22 minutes.

    PortoBay Rio de Janeiro CA $126
    PortoBay Rio de Janeiro

    PortoBay Rio de Janeiro

    Avenida Atlântica, 1500, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Copacabana, this beachfront hotel is in the city centre, 2 mi (3.2 km) from Sugar Loaf Mountain, and within 6 mi (10 km) of Parque Henrique Lage and Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden. Museum of Modern Art and Arcos da Lapa are also within 9 mi (15 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 6 minutes by foot and Siqueira Campos Station is 17 minutes.

      Hotel Astoria Palace CA $51
      Hotel Astoria Palace

      Hotel Astoria Palace

      Av. Atlantica 1866, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Offering direct access to the beach, this Copacabana hotel is in the entertainment district and within a 5-minute walk of Copacabana Beach and Avenida Atlantica. Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Fort are also within 2 miles (3 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 25 minutes by foot.

        Hotel Atlântico Travel CA $30
        Hotel Atlântico Travel

        Hotel Atlântico Travel

        Rua Barata Ribeiro nº 544, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Copacabana, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Rua Barata Ribeiro and Avenida Atlantica. Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Beach are also within 2 miles (3 km). Siqueira Campos Station is 6 minutes by foot and Cantagalo Station is 11 minutes.

          Prodigy Santos Dumont CA $76
          Prodigy Santos Dumont

          Prodigy Santos Dumont

          Av. Almirante Silvio de Noronha, 365, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Centro, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 3 miles (5 km). Cinelandia Station is 17 minutes by foot and Carioca Station is 21 minutes.

            Royal Rio Palace Hotel CA $53
            Royal Rio Palace Hotel

            Royal Rio Palace Hotel

            Rua Duvivier 82 Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Copacabana, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Copacabana Beach and Unimed Rio Emergency Care. Hospital Copa Star and Copa D'Or Hospital & Medical Center are also within 1 mi (2 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is only a 3-minute walk and Siqueira Campos Station is 14 minutes.

              Arena Leme Hotel CA $67
              Arena Leme Hotel

              Arena Leme Hotel

              Av. Atlântica 324, Rio de Janeiro
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Praia do Leme, Copa D'Or Hospital & Medical Center and Sugar Loaf Mountain. Museum of Modern Art and Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden are also within 6 mi (10 km). Cardeal Arcoverde Station is 20 minutes by foot.

                Orla Copacabana Hotel CA $50
                Orla Copacabana Hotel

                Orla Copacabana Hotel

                Avenida Atlantica 4122, Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Nestled on the beach, this Copacabana hotel is steps away from Dorival Caymmi Statue, Avenida Atlantica and Copacabana Beach. Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Fort are also within 1 mile (2 km). Ipanema-General Osorio Station is 11 minutes by foot and Cantagalo Station is 15 minutes.