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12 ESSENTIALS YOU NEED TO GO TO RIO LIKE A REAL CARIOCA THIS SUMMER

Territorio Havaianas Blog
So you’re flying down to Rio this summer? Great! You’ll have the time of your life in the capital of fun in the sun. Soon you'll be flowing in the positive energy that radiates from this outrageously charming city. But whether you are an athlete, a journalist, or a diehard fan, while in Rio you’ll want to blend in with the locals. To help you get in the spirit of the city, here is a list of 12 essentials you’ll need to experience Rio like a bona-fide carioca!
1. Face paint, team jersey and your country flag
The most important item to include in your kit is your national pride! Paint your face, don a team jersey, or wrap yourself in your country's flag. Show your enthusiasm as you cheer for your country's team. Rest assured the cariocas will put aside any rivalries and welcome you with open arms.
2. Sunscreen, sunblock and a cap to fight the heat
Wear a cap and always put on sunscreen even if it's cloudy or raining. Just because you are visiting during Rio’s winter doesn’t mean there won’t be scorching, blue-sky days. Nothing says foreigner more than bright red skin.
3. Havaianas
When in Rio, do as the cariocas do: wear Havaianas everywhere. Worn by at least three generations of Brazilian presidents and street kids alike, Havaianas are as democratic as Rio’s beaches. Bring an extra bag; you’ll want to take several pairs home as gifts for your family and friends.
4. A tanga (for the ladies)
Invest in a Carioca bikini (tanga). Don't be shy. There's nothing like a full-bottom bathing costume to make you stand out as the lonely tourist. Before hitting the beach, be sure to stop at a local salon for a certain eye-watering procedure performed with wax, fittingly known as the Brazilian.
5. A sunga (for the gents)
Carioca men, young and old, wear sungas. A must-have for any beach-based man in Rio, a sunga is sort of a hybrid of the racing swimsuit and boxer brief. If you are adventurous and not afraid to showcase your assets, go ahead and take the plunge. And remember: carioca men don’t use beach towels or sit on the sand. They stand and pose all day.
6. Sunglasses with straps
Not only do sunglasses protect your eyes from the glaring sun and make you look cool, according to the local police, thieves are less likely to bother people who are wearing shades. The logic? The bad guys can't tell in which direction their prey is looking.
7. A hearty appetite for the local cuisine
Cariocas love their carbs. Feijoada (Brazil’s national dish) and churrascarias (eat-until-you-say-uncle steak houses) are favorites of the meat-loving cariocas. For a lighter treat, grab a drink from the many juice bars and enjoy Rio's delicious exotic fruit. Our favorite? Açai. Packed with energy-boosting antioxidants, it’s the perfect snack.
8. Some spirits to celebrate your team’s achievements
Caipirinha is the local cocktail, and a true carioca will always knock back at least two of them at a sitting. Smash some limes in the bottom of a glass, add a whopping amount of sugar, some crushed ice, then fill the glass with cachaça (Brazil’s answer to tequila), and you have the Carioca’s favorite drink. A few of these and you'll be dancing the samba in no time.
9. Brazilian Wish Ribbons (Fitas do Senhor do Bonfim da Bahia)
Worn as a good luck charm, you can pick up a handful of these colorful ribbons at Rio’s hippie fair. All you need to do is tie the ribbon around your wrist with 3 knots and make a wish for each knot you tie. Once the ribbon wears out and falls off on its own, your 3 wishes will come true!
10. Mementos from your country to hand out
Cariocas are incredibly accommodating and generous. Having some doodads on hand is a great way to reciprocate: a refrigerator magnet, a keychain, a pin, anything that represents your country. Handing out a little trinket to someone who shows you kindness is key to making a nice impression.
11. Some useful words in Carioca Portuguese
A few words in the local dialect can go a long way. Since you never want to travel without saying hello, thank you, and goodbye, learn oi, valeu, and tchau. The locals will appreciate your effort and you are sure to make some new friends along the way.
12. Patience, an open mind, and a love of people and music
Being a carioca is a state of mind. And the more carioca you are, the more you'll enjoy Rio. The locals love to party and aren't in a hurry for anything. So what's the rush? Relax, revel in the excitement of the games, and remember to take advantage that you are there. Valeu!