Cultural: Downtown

Historical Monuments from a Rio De Janeiro Guide


Although Rio has a lot of history and cultural attractions, we have narrowed down our recommendations to include only the essentials, doable in a 2 day tour of the center. Est.Total Time (T): 5h per day  Estimated Total Cost (C): starts at R$ 100   Best on: Cloudy/Rainy Day

As far as museums, churches and historic areas go, our recommendations are to spend a day or two visiting as many of the following as quickly as possible (1 hour visits):

Day 1

Museu de Arte Moderna

The Modern Art Museum is in itself a work of modern art by one of Brazil’s great architects Eduardo Affonso Reidy, also responsible for the Flamengo park project (together with Burle Marx) and the Catedral (Cathedral).
Biblioteca Nacional
One of the largest libraries in the world, the National Library stores over 4 million works.

Teatro municipal
Inspired by the Paris Opera, with the outside walls inscribed with the names of some of Brazil’s
most famous artists, the eclectic style Municipal Theatre has recently been restored to its former beauty.

Paço Imperial
The Imperial Palace, now transformed into an art museum. It’s ok.

Esch Cafe: Rua do Rosario 107
Delirio Tropical: Rua Assembleia 36

Day 2

Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil
The Bank of Brazil Cultural Center hosts different technological, art and cinema events throughout the year.

Mosteiro de São Bento
The Monastery of Saint Benedict boasts one of the most elaborate baroque style churches in Latin America, with tons of gold work.

Museu de Arte do Rio
A new arte museum with top notch curation of the best available internationally.

Museu do Amanhã
A beautiful abstract crocodile warding off any aliens that step out of the flying saucer in Niteroi (the Museu de Arte Contemporanea). A must! You must get tickets online!

Guided tours
You can’t really “wing” a cultural tour anywhere, and Rio is no different. You visit and see it all, but where’s the context, background, significance and anecdotes? We recommend:
Free Walker Tours
Price: Free! You just tip what you think it was worth.

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