Averages for Rio de Janeiro in January

Weather lowdown

January marks the start of the summer season for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which makes it a popular holiday destination amongst those searching for some winter sun. During this season, the average temperature is 26°C, created by average highs of 30°C recorded during the warmest part of the day and average lows of 23°C registered during the coolest part of the evening.

Average highs of up to 30°C can be too hot to handle for so...

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Averages for Rio de Janeiro in January

  Temperature 26°C


Low Temperature 23°C


  High Temperature 30°C


  Sunshine Hours 7 hrs
  Chance of Sunny Day 25 %
  Rainfall 114mm
  Rainfall days 13 days
  Chance of Rain 44 %
  Chance of Cloudy Day 38 %
  Sea Temperature 25°C


Chance of Windy Day 1 %
Daily averages for January

Daily averages for January

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Day 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
°C 27 27 27 27 27 28 28 28 28 28 28 27 27 27 27 27 28 27 27 28 27 27 27 28 28 28 26 27 27 27 27
°F 81 81 81 81 81 82 82 82 82 82 82 81 81 81 81 81 82 81 81 82 81 81 81 82 82 82 79 81 81 81 81

Averages for Rio de Janeiro in January

Weather lowdown

January marks the start of the summer season for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which makes it a popular holiday destination amongst those searching for some winter sun. During this season, the average temperature is 26°C, created by average highs of 30°C recorded during the warmest part of the day and average lows of 23°C registered during the coolest part of the evening.

Average highs of up to 30°C can be too hot to handle for some visitors and since there is such as small difference between daytime temperatures and evening temperatures, sun set unfortunately won’t bring much relief. If you think temperatures this high will be too much for you, avoid going to Rio de Janeiro in January and plan your holiday for June or July instead, when average highs only reach 25°C.

Across January, average temperatures fluctuate throughout the month, usually staying at one temperature for five days before changing to another temperature for five days and so on. Averages vary between highs of 28°C and lows 27°C, although temperatures can sometimes drop down to 26°C, but only for a day or so. On average, the second week of January is the warmest time to visit Rio de Janeiro, whilst the first week is the coolest.

Although it’s not as wet as December, January still sees a fair amount of rainfall. Throughout the month, the resort receives 114mm of precipitation which falls over the course of 13 wet days. With rainfall occurring on almost ½ of days throughout the month, there is a very good chance you’ll get a wet spell or two, so be prepared and take some waterproof clothing or an umbrella with you. The probability of rain falling decreases as the month progresses, falling down from 57% on January 1st to 50% by January 31st.

When it rains in Rio in January, it’s usually in the form of thunderstorms which are heavy and over with quickly. However, on 22% of occasions, these heavy thunderstorms are followed by light rain showers which can go on for hours at a time, so plan plenty of indoor activities so you don’t get bored.

Since Rio enjoys a tropical climate, the resort is always humid, regardless of which time of year you visit. In January, the relative humidity normally ranges between 56% (mildly humid) and 97% (very humid), rarely falling below 37% (comfortable) or reaching as high as 100% (very humid). The air is driest around January 31st, when the relative humidity falls below 65% (mildly humid) three days out of four, whilst it’s at its most humid around January 3rd, when it rises above 94% (very humid) three days out of four.

In January, the sun shines for an average of seven hours each day – that’s one more hour each day than in December. Even though seven hours of sunshine each day might not sound like much – it’ actually lower than some popular holiday destinations in Europe – Rio’s high temperatures mean that whenever the sun is shining, it’s always warm enough for swimming or sunbathing, no matter how early or late in the day it is. Unfortunately, with such a small number of sunshine hours, you can expect a lot of cloudy spells during your January holiday in Rio. Median cloud cover ranges between 83% (mostly cloudy) at the start of the month and 74% (partly cloudy) by the end – this makes the final week the clearest one of the month.

Due to the resort’s tropical climate, the sea is always warm enough for swimming in year-round in Rio de Janeiro. In January, the average sea temperature is 25°C – that’s slightly warmer than the previous months. This makes the sea just 1°C cooler than the average air temperature.

When it comes to wind, January is a very calm month for Rio de Janeiro. During this month, typical wind speeds range between 0 m/s (calm) and 7 m/s (moderate breeze), rarely exceeding 9 m/s (fresh breeze). The highest average wind speed of 3 m/s (light breeze) happens around January 14th, when the average daily maximum is 7 m/s (moderate breeze). The lowest average wind speed of 3 m/s (light breeze) occurs around January 31st, when the average daily maximum is 7 m/s (moderate breeze). At this time of year, the wind is most often coming in from the south east or the east.

Enjoy sea views at breakfast at Hotel Marina Palace in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil?

Enjoy sea views at breakfast at Hotel Marina Palace in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Where to stay

If you like having plenty of space whilst on holiday, consider staying at Mercure Rio de Janeiro Botafogo. Unlike most hotels in the area, this three-star complex offers large self-contained apartments for very reasonable prices in a buzzing area full of bars, restaurants, shopping malls and entertainment venues. There are 65 different rooms divided between three categories. Classic apartments feature a living space and bathroom and standard apartments also have a sofa bed and kitchen, whilst superior apartments offer two sets of the same amenities, making them perfect for big families or groups of friends. All rooms are decorated in a modern style with wooden accents and neutral colours, but if you want to have all your home comforts with you during your stay, opt of a superior apartment –these include flat-screen TV, air conditioning and free WiFi access. For a hotel in Rio, where space in a premium, the Mercure Rio de Janeiro Botafogo has quite a lot of facilities, including swimming pool with solarium, children’s playground, fitness centre, bar and restaurant. And thanks to its close proximity to Sugar Loaf Mountain and Christ the Redeemer, it’s a great base for a sightseeing holiday.

Pestana Rio Atlantica Hotel is a top pick for a truly luxurious holiday in Rio de Janeiro. Boasting a prestigious location on Atlantica Avenue with unbeatable views across Copacabana beach, this hotel is best known for its spa where you can enjoy essential oil massages, swim in the rooftop pool with panoramic views, relax in the Jacuzzi, unwind in the sauna or keep fit in the state-of-the-art gym. There is even a children’s spa treatment menu available, so the whole family can chill out together. There are three dining options onsite – Cais da Ribeira Restaurant which specialises in Portuguese cuisine, the Deck Lounge Bar located on the hotel’s rooftop and the lobby bar where you can enjoy a pre- or post-dinner drink alongside live entertainment. The accommodation here is provided in the form of newly refurbished suites with huge windows and classical décor. There are 247 rooms spread out amongst 11 different room categories. The cheapest room type – the deluxe queen – can sleep up to two guests, has sea views, air conditioning, cable TV, free WiFi access, mini bar and luxury Natura amenities in the bathroom. All guests are also treated to a complimentary breakfast buffet each morning on the room terrace, regardless of the room category.

The Hotel Marina Palace is another great choice for travellers looking for a little bit of luxury in Rio. Situated just back from the beach in Leblon and only 1km away from the famous Ipanema beach, this hotel boasts loads of services and facilities, including a fitness centre and sauna with panoramic sea views, gift shop, free WiFi access, daily bus beach service, outdoor swimming pool with sun terrace, Bar da Praia where you can enjoy a pre-dinner drink and Vizta Restaurant where you can sample everything from gourmet sandwiches to sushi. A complimentary breakfast buffet is always served each morning, made up of bread, fruit, pastry, coffee and fresh fruit juice. Thanks to the hotel’s location, almost all rooms have superb beach or Sugar Loaf Mountain views, so it doesn’t matter whether you opt for a standard room, superior room or suite. Each room is decorated in warm yellow and orange tones and has basic facilities, such as flat-screen satellite TV, air conditioning and private bathroom with hairdryer.

If you’d rather stay close to Copacabana beach, take a look at Windsor Excelsior Hotel. Situated right in front of Rio’s most famous beach, this hotel has incredible views of both the beach itself and Sugar Loaf Mountain with Christ the Redeemer. Accommodation comes in the form of 233 guestrooms and suites divided between six categories, all of which were designed with charm and elegance in mind. Each unit features air conditioning, cable TV, granite bathroom with hairdryer, internet access and sound-proofed windows to ensure a great night’s sleep. The best part of the Windsor Excelsior Hotel is the rooftop terrace where you’ll find a swimming pool, bar and fitness centre with sauna and steam rooms – all of which enjoy incredible panoramic views out to sea. There is also one restaurant which serves tropical breakfast buffets and Brazilian dishes for lunch and dinner.

Take the cable car up to Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Take the cable car up to Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, via Chantal

Things to do

Rising 396m above sea level, Sugarloaf Mountain is Rio de Janeiro’s biggest tourist attraction – not primarily for the mountain itself, but mainly because it’s home to the Christ the Redeemer statue – one of the Seven Wonders of the World. You can reach the top of the mountain and get close to the world-famous statue by riding the cable car from Praia Vermelha. Even though the mountain is so high, the cable car ride just takes six minutes – so make sure you snap as many pictures as you can during the journey because you won’t have long. And with incredible views of the Leblon beaches, Guanabara Bay and the Corcovado Mountains, you’ll have plenty of things to take pictures of. Since this is Rio de Janeiro’s most popular attractions, the mountain is almost always crowded, but the 360°C views you’ll get from the mountain top make it more than worth it.

Jardim Botânico is a huge botanical garden, covering more than 137 hectares and boasting over 8,000 different species of plants. Designed by Prince Regent Dom João in 1808, this garden features rows of soaring palm trees which have been there since the garden was first created, an exotic Amazonian section, a lake loaded with huge Vitória Régia water lilies and an enclosed orquidário where you can admire 600 different species of orchids. There’s also one outdoor snack bar within the grounds, a children’s play area and a big café just inside the main entrance. The recently-introduced visitors’ centre shows films in Portuguese and English which tell you everything you need to know about the history of the gardens and a small shop which sells one-of-a-kind crafts and souvenirs you can pick up to remind you of your visit.

Spend a day with your family at Praia de Lablon in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Spend a day with your family at Praia de Lablon in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, via Catarina

Hit the beach

If you’re not bothered about going in the sea, Praia de Botafogo is a great beach to visit. Unfortunately, the waters which line the coast here are too polluted for swimming in, but it’s a fantastic place for an early morning beach run or evening bike ride surrounded by beautiful natural scenery. Since it’s not suitable for swimming, this beach is much quieter than Copacabana and Ipanema beaches, although there are still plenty of locals about, making it a great spot for people watching or simply relaxing. Avid photographers will find plenty of photo opportunities here – there are hundreds of luxury yachts floating around in the sea and you get a great view of Sugarloaf Mountain from here.

Praia de Leblon, also known as Leblon Beach, is a great place for families with young children to spend the day. This beach is separated from Ipanema beach by the canal and gardens of Jardim de Alah and has the soft, golden sands and calm, aquamarine waters that Rio de Janeiro is known for. The best spot for families is in between postos 11 and 12 – here you’ll find a small playground as well as plenty of other young families so your children will be able to make friends easily. Although there are no kiosks located directly on the beach, you will find vendors walking up and down the sands, selling everything from snacks and drinks to towels and beach balls. Plus, there are plenty of cafes, bars, restaurants and shops just a short walk away, giving you loads of options when lunchtime rolls around.

Dine on pad thai at My Thai in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Dine on pad thai at My Thai in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, via Luca

Eating and drinking out

If you’re over the Portuguese cuisine, head for My Thai. This cosy restaurant in Botafogo serves quality Thai food in an informal and relaxed environment for very reasonable prices. There’s a wide selection of appetisers and light bites to choose from, such as prawn spring rolls and chicken and basil dumplings, as well as a large selection of more filling dishes such as red shiitake curry and varieties of the ever popular Pad Thai. All food is made entirely from scratch without any artificial additives and there is an incredible selection of vegan dishes. Some diners have found the wine to be a bit over-priced, so maybe you’re best off washing your Thai dish down with a soft drink instead.

Satisfy your sweet tooth by popping into Kurt – one of the best bakeries in the whole of Rio de Janeiro. Situated in Leblon, this mouth-watering eatery serves so many different types of cakes, sweet pies and biscuits that you’ll spend hours choosing just one. Don’t worry if you’re watching your weight – there are also diet-friendly cakes which are low in sugar and fat! To accompany your sweet great, there is a selection of quality coffees and hot chocolates available. Everything is homemade and desserts are freshly prepared each day, so you’ll never have to worry about being served a stale biscuit. 

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