Visiting Rio? Don’t forget to download our gay guide to the Rio Olympics!
If you’re going to Rio de Janeiro to see the Olympics this year, you’re definitely going to want to pick up some souvenirs of your trip. (Maybe some gifts for friends, too!) If you’re unsure of where best to go, we’ve compiled this list of the best places to go for souvenirs.
The Official Rio 2016 Megastores
Official Olympic stores pop up all around Rio as the games get closer. The first official store opened June 10th in Zona Sul at the Shopping Leblon mall. Likewise, there’s already at least 19 small stores and kiosks all over Rio. But the Megastores are the ones to lookout for — and the first has just opened in Copacabana.
The Copacabana store is 1,800 square meters big and features every official Rio 2016 product — and that doesn’t just mean dolls, caps and shirts. There’s also pricier and stranger items — for example, if you have around $2,000, you can get your own commemorative gold medals.
Copacabana isn’t the only megastore. The Olympic Committee will open an even bigger store in Olympic Park. In the neighborhood of Barra da Tijuca, the new store will be 4,000 square meters, and feature even more merchandise.
Three other megastores will open as the Olympics get closer. One will be in the Olympic Village where the athletes stay, one at Maracanã Stadium where the opening and closing ceremonies will be, and one at the Olympic Stadium. By August 5th, there will be 132 official stores of various sizes. (And this doesn’t even touch the bootleg and homemade Olympic merchandise that should pop up!)
Interested in browsing at your own pace before you go? Check out the official online store first.
Address: The Copacabana megastore is on Copacabana Beach, opposite Rua Figueiredo de Magalhães — but for smaller official stores — they’re everywhere, including the airport.
The Night Market in Copacabana
After you’re done at the Copacabana Olympic megastore, if you hang around until 6 P.M., you can go to the Night Market! Much like a farmer’s market for souvenirs, the various sellers at the Night Market sell most anything you could want. Cups, pins, shirts and magnets, along with more custom items like hand-painted bags. The Night Market is just in front of Copacabana Beach, so just walk along and see what all the vendors are selling. It’s open every night except Sunday.
Address: Avenida Atlântica between Rua Bolívar and Rua Sá Ferreira.
Ipanema’s Hippie Market
Sad that the Night Market is closed Sundays? Try the Hippie Market — yep, that’s what it’s called — in Ipanema. The Hippie Market happens every Sunday and is home to all sorts of hand-crafted art, jewelry and clothing. It started in 1968, organized by hippies to sell their wares — hence the name. You can get leather, paintings, food and even furniture.
Address: Praça General Osório, on the block of Rua Teixeira de Melo and Rua Visconde de Pirajá
Rio is a very stylish city, and if you’re interested in fashion, you’ll have to stop by one of the three Gilson Martins locations in Rio. (Two are in Copacabana, one is in Ipanema.) Gilson Martins is not just home to stylish bags and other accessories — the Ipanema and Avenida Atlantica locations also have small art galleries inside, focusing on new artists from Rio.
Address: Rua Visconde de Pirajá, 462 B (Ipanema), Avenida Atlantica, 1998 (Copacabana), Rua Figueiredo Magalhães, 304 A (Copacabana)
Feira Nordestina São Cristóvão
Interested in seeing the biggest market in Rio? That’s the Feira Nordestina São Cristóvão, featuring 700 stalls. Even if you’re running low on funds, you’ll want to check out this market — music is everywhere. Particularly forró, a traditional accordion-based genre of music. Forró is dancing music, and the Feira Nordestina São Cristóvão features two live bands and a dance floor. The market is opens at 10 A.M. every day but Monday. The weekends are the best time to go, however — that’s when the bands are on display. Normally admission is free, but on the weekends it’s 3 Real — or about 92 cents.
Address: Campo de São Cristóvão
(Featured image via Stephen McParlin/Flickr)