Our guide to gay bars & parties in Rio.
Wherever you go to meet your future ex-husband, don’t open your heart for just anyone because a kiss in Brazil can be equated with a “hello” in English. So, when you lock lips with someone you really like after a night of dancing and caipirinhas, do consider the fact that you will probably never see him again. Just make sure you take a nice picture together during sunset (or sunrise!) so all your friends back home will believe he existed, and do as the Brazilians do—enjoy the moment.
With the whopping 14.30% of the city population declaring to belong to the LGBT community, Rio de Janeiro features the biggest gay and lesbian community in the country.
All the beaches of Rio de Janeiro are gay-friendly but the most popular gay ones the East Side of Farme de Amoedo Beach, Copacabana Beach, and Praia do Leblon. The most popular gay bars in Rio are The Week, OO (Zero Zero), Galeria Cafe, To Nem Ai, Boite 1140, Fosfobox, La Cueva, and Pipper Club.
The original Pool Party and R.Evolution are two of the big gay events that put the Rio gay scene on the map, both produced by Rosane Amaral in Rio around holidays. Venues vary from places such as the Museum of Modern Art at Aterro do Flamengo, and “Armazém 5” (Warehouse 5) at Cais do Porto, in the city docks.
The Week Rio
For a more upscale gay nightlife experience, consider The Week, as the Rio branch of a similarly fabulous club in São Paulo that attracts the city’s most beautiful, muscular men.
Boate 1140 first opened its doors almost 30 years ago, and has managed to earn a fabulous reputation for being the place to escape the stress of daily life and really let go on the dance floor. A popular joint for gay people in Rio, the enthusiasm of the dancers here is infectious and really gets the party going on weekends. Reasonably priced cocktails and chic, sleek decor add to the appeal of this trendy venue.
Up Turn Bar
Hosting an array of consistently amazing nights week after week, this is unsurprisingly a place you need to visit whilst in Rio. Up Turn Bar is always bustling with excited customers The venue is spacious, comfortable and boasts a large dance floor, and the cocktails are tangy and tasty. A perfect combination for a perfect evening!
Visit Fosfobox, a tiny club and bar in the red light district of Copacabana if you love themed parties and loud music. Make sure it’s a gay night when you visit, and you will find a young crowd devoted to rock and hip hop. Friday’s are the gayest…. but this is for house music lovers!
There are several gay-friendly pool parties on in Rio, usually located in Gavea or Barra, yet often the location is unknown – you buy your ticket online and meet at a designated spot, before being taken to the exclusive event. These events are sporadic and are usually only advertised on Facebook. There is also a pool party in Ipanema held almost every Sunday during the summer months in Rio. On top of a huge house called Casa Mosquito, it has a pool with inflatables, fabulous cocktails and perhaps one of the best views across Copacabana and Ipanema.