Category Archives: brazil

Gay Guide to Carnival 2025 in Rio de Janeiro

In 2025, Carnival will begin on Friday, February 28 and run through a wild extended weekend to Tuesday, March 4.  The day after is Ash Wednesday when the parties are officially over (for the most part) and you will find the streets of Rio de Janeiro quietly getting back to normal. Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival is considered the world’s largest, hosting approximately two million participants per day. In 2023, Rio’s carnival attracted a record 5 million visitors.

Getting There & Where to Stay

Purchasing a package of a flight including a hotel stay can be a great way to save money.  (Expedia has some of the cheapest package deals we have found with international flights to Brazil.)  Fortunately, many airlines are offering flexible cancellation policies to encourage post-COVID travel.  For great deals, try searching,, Iberia,  LAN / TAM Airlines,  and

Will you need a visa to enter Brazil?  In 2019, citizens of the US, Canada, Australia, and Japan received visa-free access to Brazil for tourism. Get the full list of nationalities and visa requirements from the consulate of Brazil.

For lodging, remains the best, cheapest, way to find both hotels and flats (with Expedia ranking a close 2nd.)  Visit our full list of gay-friendly places to stay in Rio de Janeiro by clicking on the link below.

View all gay-friendly hotels in Rio »

Day-By-Day Schedule to Carnival 2025

Hopefully, you can arrive before Carnival week (and stay after.)  By January, Rio will be in full swing.  Visit any of the gay bars and clubs on our list and you will find a good time.

Like VamosGay on Facebook and/or join our email list below to get the 2025 schedule as soon as it’s available.

Gay Block Parties? LGBT-Friendly Blocos

From the butch, to the femme, and everyone in between, Carnival in Rio offers the perfect excuse to show off your muscles or your glitter.  Here’s our short list of the city’s most  gay-friendly block parties, but you’ll find many of Rio’s blocos are fabulously welcoming.

List of Rio’s LGBT Carnival Blocos »

Travel Tips

To keep this section short, our guide will assume you know how to navigate the dangers of big cities and foreign countries.  Download digital version of Lonely Planet: Rio de Janeiro for the best English-language guide to the city, and a good source for basic travel tips.

  • Mobile data – research the international data packages provided by your carrier.  In Brazil, SIM cards with data plans are cheap and easy to activate.  As a foreigner, you can activate and use SIM cards from TIM, Claro, and Oi.  We recommend Claro. Read our guide to SIM cards and mobile plans for foreigners visiting Brazil.
  • Bring a 2nd phone.  That iPhone 5 in your drawer is perfect for navigating the city with apps.  Phone theft is rampant in blocos and nightclubs.  A second phone can also hold your new Brazilian SIM card.
  • Google Maps – pre-plan your route (by foot, bus, or subway) and save them as “offline” maps.  Download our Google Map now.
  • Bring your drivers license to nightclubs.  Dragging around your passport is not necessary; a driver’s license / photo ID is fine.
  • Avoid mosquitoes  – The zika virus crisis has subsided, but not disappeared.  Bring your own DEET mosquito repellent .  Pharmacies in Rio sell the cheap stuff.
  • Debit/credit cards – Highly recommend one with a “chip.”  Credit card cloning is still a problem in South America.  A pre-paid Visa for small purchases and hotel guarantees is a good idea.
  • Ask your front desk – All of the hotels on our list of gay-friendly places to stay in Rio know the city and are happy to help.  Use them!
  • Watch your drink! – Criminals who drug tourists usually target women, but in Brazil gay men are often targets.
  • Be careful who you bring back to your hotel – At some hotels, you can walk directly to your elevator, some may ask for ID from your guest(s)  The safest bet for hookups is to go to one of Rio’s many gay saunas.
  • Wear shoes – Yes, your new Havaiana flip flops are cute, but don’t be one of gringoes who goes home on crutches.
  • Don’t sweat every little expense – The club that wants to charge a cover of R$50 … That’s about US$9.25 right now.
  • Be OK with the fact you won’t see it all – Don’t overload your agenda.  Make a note of what you would like to come back for in 2023.

Online Resources During Carnival 2025

Get info and ask questions by following VamosGay on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.  Or, leave a comment below!

Sign-up for Gay Carnival in Rio Newsletter

We’ve got all of the inside info, but we love to share it with our friends. Like VamosGay on Facebook and/or join our email list.

This gay guide to Carnival in Rio will give you everything you need to plan your trip before you go, and all of the information you need during Carnival week.  Bookmark on web and mobile!

São Paulo LGBT Pride Parade 2024

On Sunday, June 2, 2024, the largest gay pride parade in the world will celebrate its 28th anniversary.  Past parades have attracted over 3 million people took to the streets of Sao Paulo, according to estimates. 

Click to launch our Google Map of the parade route including landmarks of gay Sao Paulo ️

Watch the Replay of the Live Stream ️‍ 

In the days leading up to the parade, São Paulo (already one of the most gay-friendly cities in Latin America) explodes with gay activities.  By day, “gayborhoods” like Frei Caneca and Largo do Arouche fill with couples.  And by night, bars and nightclubs throughout the city are packed.

The theme of the 2024 parade has been announced as “voting for the rights of the LGBT+ population.”   This year, everyone is encouraged to take to the streets in green and yellow, the colors of the Brazilian flag.  In recent years, the colors became associated with anti-gay groups, but this marks a return green and yellow reclaimed as symbols of national pride for all Brazilians.

Getting There

For those searching for air/hotel packages, Expedia offers some of the lowest rates for package deals to São Paulo.  Europeans, Americans, and visitors who are  already in South America have a number of inexpensive options.  For international flights, we always use to compare airfares and find the lowest rates all of the major airlines.

View airfare deals »

Hotels & Gay-Friendly Places to Stay

South America’s largest city offers hundreds of great places to stay. Here’s our short list of hotels you can enjoy your stay for pride weekend.

View Gay-Friendly Hotels »

Guide to Bars & Club

There are almost 40 different options!  From hole-in-the-wall bars to multi-floor mega clubs, check out our 2024 guide to São Paulo’s gay (and gay-friendly) places to go.

View List of Bars & Clubs »

Saunas & Sex

Every sex club, cinema, and sauna will be very active for Pride Week. We’ve listed them all on one page. Dive in!

View Sao Paulo saunas and sex clubs »

Sign-up for our mailing list and be the first to know the full agenda!

*Note for American visitors :  Travel to Brazil requires a visa.   Get visa info you will need in time for June’s pride parade.  Click here for Brazilian visa information for tourists.


São Paulo Gay-Friendly Hotels

The “gayborhoods” of São Paulo are very diverse.  Which unique flavor is right for you?  Check out our guide to the gay neighborhoods of Sao Paulo to help you find the perfect place to stay from our recommended list of gay-friendly hotels.  From inexpensive places to crash near nightlife to five-star hotels, our shortlist has what you’re looking for.

Update for São Paulo LGBT Pride 2024:
Hotels in the neighborhood Frei Caneca / Consolação are the closest to the parade route.  Check our map of gay Sao Paulo for assistance.

Blue Tree Premium Paulista

Extremely well-run hotel within a ten minute walk from the heart of “Gay Caneca.”
Neighborhood: Frei Caneca / Consolação
Read our full review »

Bourbon Sao Paulo Business Hotel

Straight-laced, yet gay-friendly, hotel next door to the bear and daddy bars.
Neighborhood: Largo do Arouche / Centro
Read our full review »

Hotel Fasano

Five-star luxury in the upscale Jardins district.
Neighborhood: Jardins / Cerqueira César
Read our full review »

Golden Tulip Bela Artes

Well-reviewed and convenient hotel on Frei Caneca street.
Neighborhood: Frei Caneca / Consolação
Read our full review »

Guest Urban Hotel

“Hip, cozy, lovely … The boutique hotel that São Paulo was missing!”
Neighborhood: Pinheiros
Read our full review »

H3 Hotel Paulista

Elegantly simple new hotel.
Neighborhood: Frei Caneca / Consolação
Read our full review »

Hotel Heritage Comfort Inn

Exceptionally priced mid-range hotel.
Neighborhood: Frei Caneca / Consolação
Read our full review »

Mercure Sao Paulo Paulista

An excellent option from the Mercure line of hotels.
Neighborhood: Consolação
Read our full review »

Hotel Moncloa

Low-budget option in the thick of Rua Augusta.
Neighborhood: Largo do Arouche / Centro
Read our full review »

San Michel Hotel

A great home base for exploring Largo do Arouche.
Neighborhood: Largo do Arouche / Centro
Read our full review »

Transamerica Executive: The Advance

Small modern hotel with extra amenities.
Neighborhood: Largo do Arouche / Centro
Read our full review »

Tryp Sao Paulo Paulista Hotel

Sharply stylish hotel catering to the corporate crowd is blocks away from one of the city’s gay epicenters.
Neighborhood: Frei Caneca / Consolação
Read our full review »

Hotel Unique

Exquisite design and stunning views of São Paulo.
Neighborhood: Jardins / Cerqueira César
Read our full review »

Find More Gay-Friendly Places

From the posh Jardins neighborhood to the bohemian sections of Republica, find some great deals on hotels, flats, and apartments on the map below.

Gay Guide to São Paulo

São Paulo is famous across the globe for its Parada do Orgulho, the largest gay pride parade in the world.  However, compared to its tropical brother Rio de Janeiro, foreigners know very little about Latin America’s largest and most populous city.

Guide to LGBT Pride Parade 2024 »

Gay nightlife in Sampa, as São Paulo is also known, rivals major cities like New York and London. (One could even argue the city’s gay nightlife surpasses any gay club in the US or Europe.)  By day, São Paulo offers world-class gastronomy, visual arts, and architecture.

Dive in with the VamosGay 2024 Guide to São Paulo to plan your trip, unlock insider tips, and enjoy the best of the city!


Learn more about the diverse “gayborhoods” of São Paulo.

View all »

Bars & Clubs

A to Z listing of every bar, lounge, and club in the city.

View all »

Restaurants & Cafes

The 2024 hotlist of where to eat in a city full of options.

View all »

Sex & Saunas

An up-to-date list of Sao Paulo’s hottest hot spots.

View all »

Hotels & Airfare

Location, amenities, price, and gay-friendly!

View all »

Places to Visit

Museums, parks, street fairs, and more.

View all »

A Day at the Beach

Guide to Santos, Guarujá, and São Vicente

View guide »

Pride Parade 2024

⚕️ Click below for coronavirus schedule change

View guide »

São Paulo Gay Bars & Clubs

Just in time for São Paulo Pride 2024! Here is the up-to-date list of the city’s gay (and gay-friendly) bars and clubs.

Latin America’s biggest city has something for everyone: bears, twinks, daddies, hipsters, and even business travelers. (Look for a ☆ symbol to find the best-of-the-best on our list.)

Outside of bars and clubs, check out our guide to SP’s restaurants, saunas, and places to stay. Also try the VamosGay Google Map to gay São Paulo.

ABC Bailão

Recommended for the over 50 crowd. It’s not specifically a “daddy bar” but the Bailao is a legendary spot for the mature and their admirers. The crowd loves to dance and the DJs supply a steady stream of classics.
Rua Marquês de Itu 182, São Paulo view map »

Aloka Club

The queen of clubs (formerly named A Lôca) continues to reign over the area known as Frei Caneca (or as the locals call it “Gay Caneca.”) Creative line-up of DJs and a young crowd.Read our full review »
Rua Frei Caneca 916, São Paulo view map »

Auê São Paulo

Highly recommended for nightlife in Frei Caneca!  Great music and multiple floors.  Very popular with groups of guys.  Check out Aue’s Instagram for a great sample of what to expect.
R. Barbosa Rodrigues, 46,, São Paulo view map »

Bar Fama

A trashy good time for those who consider “trashy” a compliment. Read our full review of Bar Fama‘s strippers and weekend parties.
Rua Frederico Abranches 29, São Paulo view map »

Bar da Lôca

The open-air bar next to the dance club A Lôca. Read our full review for more info
map view map »

Bar do Netão

Underground beats, retro-grooves, and punk make this Augusta bar the place party. Check the Bar do Netao Instagram for their calendar.
Rua Augusta 584, São Paulo view map »


Stylish, yet simple addition to the Largo do Arouche neighborhood. Sidewalk tables are a popular early-evening option.
Largo do Arouche, 103, São Paulo view map »

Bar Queen

Festive strippers and drag in the heart of the gay Largo do Arouche neighborhood.
Rua Vitória, São Paulo view map »

Bar Verde

Inexpensive spot with a young crowd. On a street full of bars in case you’re in the mood to bar crawl.
map view map »

Blue Space

Brazilian transformistas are some of the most exquisite drag performers in the world, and Blue Space is where you can find the best of the best every weekend. Read more about them (and the club’s epic gogo boys) in our full Blue Space review.
Rua Brigadeiro Galvão 723 São Paulo view map »

Caberet da Cecilia

Retro-chic bar, plus small intimate stage which is home to live musical performances and burlesque-inspired erotic shows.
Rua Fortunato 35, São Paulo view map »

Caneca de Prata

The bar itself is very small, but Caneca de Prata is all about the sidewalk outside, which is literally overflowing with daddies, bears, and their admirers.
Avenida Viêira de Carvalho 63 ,São Paulo view map »

Casa Fluida

Gender fluid overflows at this festive bar every letter of the LGBTQIA spectrum.  Also features regular art installations to complement the more traditional drag shows and gender bending performances.
R. Bela Cintra, 569, São Paulo view map »


The best electronica club in Brazil goes queer every Friday
Av. Auro Soares de Moura Andrade 141, São Paulo>map view map »

Danger Dance Club

Always packed dance club with a loyal following of young men of color. Get more info on Danger from our review.
Rua Rêgo Freitas 470, São Paulo view map »

Espaço Desmanche

College-age guys and girls flock to the various parties hosted at this Augusta Street nightspot. Check out their calendar of events for an updated list.
R. Augusta 765, São Paulo view map »

Eagle São Paulo

After a couple of successful years in the Consolação neighborhood, the Eagle has found a hotter address right on Augusta Street. We haven’t visited the new location to write a review yet, but you can get more info from the Eagle SP Facebook page.
map view map »

High Club

The legendary co-founder of The Week (RIP) returns with epic parties at his latest venture High Club.  Highly recommended for international DJs and shirtless dancing.
R. João Rudge, 115 ,São Paulo view map »

Hitch Bar

This stylish  Pinheiros bar offers great drinks and a revolving calendar of events from themed playlists to karaoke.  The Alfred Hitchock decor makes this an Instagram worthy way to have drinks with friends..
Rua Cardeal Arcoverde 1736, São Paulo view map »

Hot House SP

Probably the raunchiest a bar can be with out crossing over into sex and saunas listings.  Hot House is a small stripper bar.  Their website has a calendar of events.
Rua Nestor Pestana 27, São Paulo view map »


Editor’s Choice for best Thursday night for four years in a row. Read more about Igrejinha and it’s nightly parties.
Rua Fernando de Albuquerque 302, São Paulo view map »


Excellent choice for nightlife. Jerome is that rare mix of an A-list crowd and dance your ass off fun.
Rua Mato Grosso398, São Paulo view map »


Very popular destination to have a cocktail in the bohemian downtown region known as Praça Roosevelt. Lekitsch is surrounded by independent performance spaces, and a dozen other cool nightspots.
Praça Franklin Roosevelt 142, São Paulo view map »

Mayfair Lounge Club

Chic Friday night option in Sao Paulo’s upscale Jardins neighborhood.  A great new addition to the scene .
Alemeda Campinas 1631, São Paulo view map »

Paris 94

As a visitor, you may look into the window of Paris 94 and have to decide. It looks like a fun hot time, but it’s sort of sketchy.If you’re feeling brave, prepare for a fun sweaty night on the bar/club’s small dance floor.
Av. Viêira de Carvalho 94, São Paulo view map »

Selva Club

Young crowd. Old enough to drink … they do drink! Selva hosts a number of parties and always full of high-energy Paulistanos. Straight, gay, whatever.
Rua Augusta 501, São Paulo view map »

Soda Pop Bar

Hunting bears has never been easier. Read our review of Soda Pop Bar, it’s a very popular spot for early evening hangouts.
Av. Viêira de Carvalho 43, São Paulo view map »


Multiple floors with multiple parties. Popular nights feature everything from hip-hop to Brazilian beats. Tokyo’s “sunset” parties are Sunday afternoon treats.
Rua Major Sertório 110, São Paulo view map »

Up Cozinha & Bar

Chill out on the terrace with eclectic Brazilian cocktails and tapas.
Rua Antônio Carlos 395, São Paulo view map »

Woof Bar

New addition to the strip of bear and daddy bars on Avenida Viêira de Carvalho.  Even though it’s a bar, not a club, there’s a line-up of DJs.
Av. Viêira de Carvalho 31, São Paulo view map »


Nautical-themed club for the cool kids. Wednesdays are recommended. Read our full review of Club Yacht for more details.
Rua Treze de Maio 703, São Paulo view map »


Venues where you may find everything from a Madonna album release party to “Kevin” a monthly hardcore sex party. We’ll need a few more visits to Zig for full reviews. But, try either of the 3 locations if you’re curious.
ZIG Club  @ Alvaro de Carvalho 190, São Paulo, Brazil view map »
ZIG Duplex  @ Rua araújo, 155, São Paulo, Brazil view map »
ZIG Studio  @ Avenida Pacaembu, 33, São Paulo, Brazil view map »

The Gay Neighborhoods of São Paulo

 Finding gay men in South America’s largest city can be difficult, but not impossible if you know where to look.  Scroll down for a neighborhood-by-neighborhood breakdown.  Or, click the button below to view the Google Map of Gay Sao Paulo.

Launch Google Maps

Frei Caneca / Consolação

Also known as “Gay Caneca” this is an LGBT-friendly (or some might say LGBT-dominated) section of the Consolação neighborhood.  Its borders are roughly defined by the massive and bustling Avenida Paulista and the very gay and very cruisey Shopping Frei Caneca.

Nightlife in Frei Caneca remains anchored by long-standing night club Aloka which also reflects the youthful nature of the neighborhood.

View neighborhood listings

Largo do Arouche / Centro

Much like New York City’s West Village in the 1980s, Largo do Arouche is dirty, a bit dangerous, but never boring.  Easily walkable in 15 minutes, this “gayborhood” flourishes as a home for the entire queer rainbow.  Bears, daddies, lesbians, and transsexuals are equally at home.  Bars and clubs in Largo do Arouche are all about having a cheap good time.  There’s no architecture or design to admire, just alcohol, music, and good times.

Many of the area’s are located downtown.  Actually, most of the party is actually in the middle of the street on Avenida de Carvalho in front of popular bars like Soda Pop and Caneca de Prata.

On the other side of the praça (the park at the center of Largo do Arouche,) sex clubs and cinemas continue to operate while homeless gay and trans youth provide their own brand of entertainment on the streets.  This area is the most dangerous of São Paulo’s gay neighborhoods.  Tourists should use extra caution, but have a good time.

Largo do Arouche is a section of the greater Downtown area (known as Centro, which is mostly straight.)  One way to experience quickly experience Centro is to take a 15-minute walk up to Avenida Iprianga for the city’s best cocktails at Bar da Onça and the best coffee at Cafe Floresta.  Both are inside of Edifício Copan, one of the largest buildings in Brazil and the creation of the country’s premiere architect Oscar Niemeyer.

View neighborhood listings


Not gay per se, but on it’s way! Pinheiros is currently in the midst of a gentrification boom as trendy young gays hunt for apartments, culture, and nightlife. The neighborhood had long been a Saturday afternoon destination for the gay-friendly outdoor fair at Praça Benedito Calixto.  Hip restaurants like Le Jazz and Suri Ceviche Bar continue the list of places worth visiting.

View All Listings

Jardins / Cerqueira César

Across the divide of Avenida Paulista, chic boutiques and upscale restaurants make the neighborhood known as Jardins one of the most desirable districts in São Paulo.  (Jardins and Cerqueira César are often used interchangeably in guidebooks to refer to the same region.  Stick with Jardins when chatting with locals.)

For visitors, Jardins has many hotel, bar, and restaurant options and is within 15 to 30 minutes walking distance from most of the gay hot spots in Frei Caneca.

View All Listings

Full List of São Bars & Clubs