Brazil’s second largest city, Rio de Janeiro, is famous for its hot beaches and carnival. Being a very popular travel destination, finding cheap hotels in Rio de Janeiro can prove to be a bit tricky especially if you are planning a vacation here exactly when the rest of the tourists are.

Rio de Janeiro is a large city but its most popular district is Zona Sul, where the Copacabana and Ipanema beaches are located. It is also home to the upscale neighborhoods and the glitzy hotels, where the prices are high all pretty much all the time (and especially during the high tourist season). Although the majority of visitors come here for the beaches, there’s more to do in Rio de Janeiro than just soaking up the sun. Walk in the Centro and look for some of the old charming buildings, visit one of the incredible churches or choose to tour a museum.

With some careful planning you can find cheap hotels in Rio de Janeiro pretty much in any district. If you want to stay near the beach, look for cheap hotels close to Flamengo and Catete beaches rather than the world-famous Copacabana. You can find affordable places near Ipanema beach as well. Otherwise, choosing a place further from the beaches will definitely translate into lower prices. The Santa Teresa neighborhood is another good option and also offers quite nice places to dance the night away. The Centro is good for business travelers but lacks places to eat or party. However, no matter in what neighborhood you plan to stay, the 2-star hotels are the only ones which fall in the “budget” classification.

You do need to keep in mind that accommodation in Rio de Janeiro is probably the most expensive in Brazil. There is always shortage of places to stay so make sure to book in advance. If you plan to come here during the Carnival, book your bed months before your arrival. The tourist season lasts between November to March, when prices are high, reaching their peak around New Year’s Day.

Some budget hotels in Rio de Janeiro include: Ibis Rio de Janeiro Centro (Accor Hotels chain, in the city center, 200 rooms, AC, TV, mini bar), Hotel Ipanema Inn (30 m from Ipanema beach, 56 rooms, TV, private bath, breakfast included in the room rate) and Best Western Sol Ipanema Hotel (Bet Western hotel chain, on Ipanema beach , swimming pool, restaurant, TV, internet, AC).

Map of Rio de Janeiro Hotels