Christmas shopping in Rio de Janeiro can be a slightly bewildering experience, particularly for foreign visitors accustomed to making their festive shopping trips in sub-zero temperatures. Christmas falls at the height of Brazilian summer, which means that Christmas shopping in Rio de Janeiro takes place in searing tropical heat.
The scorching temperatures don't stop Rio retailers getting into the Christmas spirit, however, and malls such as the mammoth Barra Shopping are decked out in impressive Christmas displays, complete with snowy winter scenes and visiting Santas.
For those that can stand the blazing heat, and the cacophany of sales pitches from competing retailers, the downtown maze of shopping streets that is Saara is packed with opportunities to pick up everything from festive decorations to costume jewelery and clothing.
Any female beach goer is sure to love a beautiful Brazilian bikini (just be sure to check the sizing first), and the upmarket beachwear stores BumBum and Lenny have some of the best models on the market.
For the ultimate Rio Christmas shopping experience, however, indulge your inner beach bum and just settle onto your sunlounger on Copacabana beach and let the vendors come to you. Swimwear, sunglasses, tees and even caipirinha-making kits are just some of the wares sold by Rio's beach entrepreneurs.
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