Barra Beach – the longest beach in Rio
Barra as is popularly known, will host most of the events of the Olympic Games in 2016. It runs 11 miles (18 km) from the edge of Barra de Tijuca to the opposite edge of Recreio.
There are many extreme water sports enjoyed in the ocean of Barra Beach. Long and short board surfing; body boarding, kite surfing and windsurfing are quite popular on this beach. Championships for these sports are held here yearly. There are several schools to rent out equipment or to teach the novice how to surf. The most popular school is Escola de Surf Rico. Or try Escola Carioca de Surf, a mobile school with a van to drive you to the beaches with the best surf every day. There are also private instructors available for private or semi-private lessons.
Barra Beach is the longest beaches in Rio. Unlike the blue waters of most of the beaches in Rio de Janeiro, Barra Beach is rather green in color. The surf is high and the tides strong. Weak swimmers are advised to stay very close to shore. If you are hungry visit one of the barracas or tents to get a quick bit to eat and some coconut water. Do not be surprised to see movie and TV stars, sports personalities and other wealthy and famous people on this beach.
Around the Beach
There is plenty to do around the beach. Travel to the Downtown megamall at night when locals flock to the restaurants, shops and theaters. Try the Galeria Gourmet restaurant near the cinema. It has a well designed all you can eat buffet for a very reasonable price. There are several internet cafes should you need access to a computer. Citta America is another large mall. For some fine dining try Rio Barra Brasa a churrascaria eatery with some of the best meat and shrimp. They also have a play space for kids. Nuth on Av. Armando Lombardi is a techno club popular with the locals but quite difficult to get in.
Olegario Maciel avenue is a “hot spot” street for Barra gastronomy and shopping. The curious thing about that avenue which starts at a corner of Pepe Avenue, is about its looks in a region where the predominance of large shopping malls and auto-track prevails with urban landscape. This avenue is a pedestrian-friendly, either due to the existence of wide sidewalks or because being a shopping street, which is quite rare in Barra. At Olegario Maciel Avenue there are food options for all tastes and prices. Na Brasa Columbia is a fairly new restaurant with an open site located at the beginning of the avenue, walking further into Olegario you will find more renowed restaurants such as pizzeria Capricciosa, Kobe and Gialla la Pasta, and bar for friends gatherings.