Rio de Janeiro has two airports: Antônio Carlos Jobim International Airport (Galeão), 20 km from downtown; and Santos Dumont Airport, located downtown close to Zona Sul (South Zone area) by the sea. Galeão Airport handles flights from all over the world as well as other Brazilian states, while Santos Dumont mainly handles domestic flights.
Departing from São Paulo, access is gained by the Presidente Dutra Highway, running 445 km, on a road that was built to connect both cities.
Rio’s metro system is an excellent way to get around. All lines are air-conditioned, clean, fast and safe. The main line goes from Ipanema-General Osório to Saens Peña, connecting with the secondary line to Estácio (which provides service to São Cristóvão, Maracanã and beyond). The main stops in Centro are Cinelândia and Carioca.
The new line (linha 4) connects Ipanema to Barra daTijuca. It runs from General Osório to Jardim Oceânico with stops in Ipanema, Leblon and São Conrado.
You can purchase a cartão pré-pago (prepaid card) from a kiosk in any metro station using cash (no change given) with a minimum of R$5 or more. You can then recharge it at any kiosk. Free subway maps are available from most ticket booths.
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Security has improved in Rio de Janeiro during the past few years. There is a higher police presence in Zona Sul than there was previously. However, it is necessary to be aware of the high incidence of crime in Rio de Janeiro. Visitors can be at risk of muggings and robberies, especially in areas where there are many tourists, and especially at night. If approached by thieves, it is important not to resist their demands; hand over what is asked for so as to avoid any violent repercussions.
There are many pharmacies in all of the main streets, a number of which stay open 24 hours, including two branches of Drogaria Pacheco, Av NS de Copacabana, 115; Av NS de Copacabana 534; Farmácia do Leme (Av Prado Júnior 231, Copacabana; 24hr). In Leblon, Farmácia Piauí (2274 8448; Av Ataulfo de Paiva 1283, Leblon; 24hr).
For medical emergencies, the following are available:
Hospital Ipanema (3111 2300; Rua Antônio Parreiras 67, Ipanema)
Miguel Couto Hospital (2274 2121; Av Bartolomeu Mitre 1108,
The weather in Rio is tropical, warm and humid, with local variations, due to differences in altitude, vegetation and proximity to the ocean; the average annual temperature is 22° Celsius, with daily averages significantly higher in summer. In March, average lows are 23°, with average highs of 32°. April has average lows of 22° and average highs of 31°. Rainfall is relatively low in March and April but it is advisable to bring an umbrella and rainwear, as rain can fall heavily at any time of year.