Interested in visiting Petrópolis? Check out our traveler’s trip list!


Among the state of Rio de Janeiro’s finer detours is the famed Imperial City “Petrópolis”. Just north of the states capital, this idyllic hamlet was founded around the habitation of the Portuguese and later Brazilian Imperial family in the area. After Dom Pedro I established his summer palace in Serra dos Órgãos, the royal family encouraged the settlement of German immigrants in the area to further populate the local that in the 1870’s would become Petrópolis. Visitors willing to take the short trip north of Rio de Janeiro will find a city that retains architectural and historical connections to Brazil’s colonial and imperial ages amidst picturesque scenery.


Sights we recommend


Imperial Museum (originally the summer home of Dom Pedro I and Dom Pedro II, this splendid history museum provides an excellent journey through the history of Brazil’s Empire with well preserved artifacts and installations)


Centro Historico (No trip to Petrópolis is complete without a stroll through the historic Centro district. Numerous colonial-era buildings remain intact and open, as well as Brazil’s first brewery)


Nossa Senhora do Fatima (visually pleasing 19th century church at the top of a hill in Petrópolis. Provides a fantastic overview and panoramic shot of Petrópolis)




Funghi D’oro (locally cultivated funghi based cuisine beautifully set in the “Rocio” Valley)Est. Caminho do Imperador 1333, Rocio, Petrópolis

Casa do Alemão (Brazilian cultivated German cuisine from the ancestors of Petrópolis’s significant german immigrant population!) 927 Ayrton Senna, Quitandinha, Petrópolis




The most efficient manner to reach Petrópolis from Rio de Janeiro would be to travel there by bus (from the Rodoviaria).


Cost: R$20 – 30 one way

Time: 1.5 hours




Pousada Rancho da Ferradura


The #1 TripAdvisor rated BnB in Petrópolis, this guesthouse features great food and drink and fantastic amenities such as Jacuzzis and saunas. Rancho de Ferradura provides all these things in a timeless rustic background.


Cost (Daily): R$400 – 500



Pousada Paraiso Acu


This scenic pousada is great for adventure tourism. Located among the mountains, the warm and helpful staff will ensure you make the most of your time visiting the Imperial City (and that you are well fed while there!). The peaceful and serene surroundings will have guests relaxed in no time.


Cost (Daily): R$ 450 – 550



Hotel Casablanca Koeller


A reasonably priced and absolutely cozy hotel inside the city proper, and a wonderful place to stay for anyone who wishes to take full advantage of the historical offerings of Petrópolis. Well designed interiors and vintage furniture add to the appeal for those who wish for a historical sleeping environment as well!


Cost (Daily): R$ 200-300







Rio artist Selaron found dead on his mosaic staircase masterpiece

Chilean artist Jorge Selarón on the stairs he spent 20 years decorating. Photograph: Antonio Scorza/AFP

Sad news of the passing of local artist Jorge Selarón. The news as reported by

The ceramic street artist who created one of Rio de Janeiro’s most distinctive landmarks was found dead on Thursday on the spectacular mosaic staircase in Lapa that he decorated with brightly coloured tiles and mirrors over more than two decades.

Jorge Selarón, a Chilean artist who transformed the 215 steps of the Convent of Santa Teresa as a “tribute to the Brazilian people”, had reportedly suffered depression and was being threatened by a former colleague connected to local drug gangs.

No verdict has been given on the cause of death but friends said they had feared he would kill himself because he felt betrayed.

Photographs showed that passersby have already lit candles near the body as a mark of respect for the much loved artist, who went from obscurity to fame but never left the gritty neighbourhood that is at the heart of the city’s Samba culture.

Selarón was primarily a painter in 1990 when he started a small scale renovation of the steep steps that ran outside his house up into the Santa Teresa favela. But the part-time project became a life work.

Sometimes selling his paintings to fund his obsession, he changed the tatty path, tile by tile, fragment by fragment, into a blaze of colour and a globally recognised symbol of Rio.

His steps – often referred to as the Selarón staircase – were designated as a city landmark and appeared in fashion magazines, music videos and films. The artist was declared an honorary citizen of Rio de Janeiro.

As his notoriety increased so did the value of his paintings and, more recently, the pressures on the artist in an area that is also notorious for crime and drug use. The Globo newspaper said a dispute over the proceeds from his art sales had made him suicidal.

In an interview with the daily shortly before his death, Selarón claimed he was threatened by a former employee of his studio.

Be “tranquilo”…(relaxed and safe!!) while you are traveling in Rio!!!


Considered by many specialist in travel as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, it is not for nothing that Rio de Janeiro is the main gateway to international tourism in Brazil. Rio de Janeiro has around 6 million people and like any big city in the world has to deal with security issues.  Since Rio was chosen to host  the World Cup 2014 and the Olympics in 2016, different security projects were implemented by the Public Safety Department  like the UPP (Police Pacification Unit), police stations installed inside some of the main favelas (slums) that had helped increase the feeling of security of locals and foreign visitors to the city. However, that is a gradual process that until we get the first big results we should still follow necessary safety tips in order to enjoy most of the beauties of the wonder city.

Safety tips:

  • Avoid carrying the original passport, copies would be enough.
  • Exchange the cash for local currency because most of the establishments accept only Reals.
  • Try to use ATMs during the day. The service only works until 10pm at the banks cash points. Alternatively there are the 24h Supermarkets that usually have an ATM inside.
  • Avoid going out with more than necessary money. Most establishments accept credit cards.
  • Try not going out at the streets wearing jewelry, expensive watches etc. Usually the burglars are young and really fast.
  • Prefer to use the beach chairs for rent offered by the food and drink tents in the sand and preferably not leave personal belongings out of your presence.
  • If you go out with your camera, specially the large ones, always keep it hanging from the neck.
  • Avoid dim streets, alleys with few people walking there.
  • Rio de Janeiro’s downtown area is the best place for the ones interested in local historiy or arquitectural things. There you can find the main musuems and cultural centers. But you should avoid it during the weekends as it will be completely empty.
  • Rio de Janeiro has the world’s biggest urban forrest, known as Tijuca Forrest, and a visit to it is mandatory. But you must have a guide to scort you in the several trials there. So don’t pretend to be Indiana Jones going there by yourself!
  • The buses work well in the city and instructions on how to get them will be given by one of the staffs at Casa Cool Beans. During the night, however, should give preference to taxis.
  • Taxis are safe but prefers the ones who works to priviate companies (knowns as “cooperativa”). To identify them simply observe if they have the name of the cooperative that they belongs stamped in blue stripe painted on the rear side of the car.
  • Most police men do not speak English so if you have something stolen and want to make a record of the incident for insurance purposes, ask at your hotel to guide you using the tourist city police (DEAT), located in Leblon. The service there is in English.

Heading to Copacabana New Year Eve’s Big Party Next Week? Some tips and information…

Rio NYE party

Rio de Janeiro is less than one week from the New Year’s Eve big firework display at Copacabana Beach. The city has just hosted the Stevie Wonder and Gilberto Gil Christmas Concert and now the stages for the dozens of shows to be performed at the famous beach are being readied for the Reveillon Festivities.

There will be two main stages, The Palco Principal (Main Stage) will be in front of Copacabana Palace and Palco Claro will be further down the beach opposite Rua Santa Clara. There will be more other two small stages, one located at Leme and the other one in front of Rua Xavier da Silveira. The show at the two main stages will run uninterruptedly until the fireworks starts at midnight, with a break of 16 minutes. The shows will be back right after the fireworks display finishes and then run until around 3 am. Below are the line ups :


Main stage (Copacabana Palace)

*8PM – DJs MAM e Marcelinho da Lua

*9PM – Diogo Nogueira
10:30 PM – Sorriso Maroto

12AM – Fireworks

12:20 AM – Claudia Leite

1AM – Ellen Oléria – vencedora do programa The Voice

3AM – G.R.E.S Unidos da Tijuca


Claro Stage (Rua Santa Clara)

8PM – Mariene de Castro

9PM – Olodance

*10PM – Baby do Brasil

12AM – Fireworks

12:20 AM – Grupo Revelação

*1:40 AM – G.R.E.S Acadêmicos do Salgueiro

*2:20 AM – G.R.E.S. Unidos de Vila Isabel


Rua Xavier da Silveira stage

6PM – Dj

7PM – Grupo vou pro Sereno

*8:30 PM – Dj Brinquinho

9:30PM – Stylo X

12AM – Fireworks

2:16 AM – Stylo X

1AM – Dj Lesco

2AM – Dj Presuntinho


Leme Stage

6PM – Start of program – Band

7PM – Band

12AM – Fireworks

*12:20AM – Samba School

2AM – DJ

* Performance Highlights


Two million people are expected at Copacabana beach on December 31st so Copacabana will be packed and for that reason there are some tips that should be followed:

  • Go by metro – it is important to arrive early. The Atlantic Avenue will be blocked at 3pm and the whole neighborhood will have its streets blocked for private cars running at 6pm. Buy the metro (subway) tickets in advance. They are going to be selling special tickets for the day. On the 31st, from 7pm, those are going to be the only ones accepted. Casa Cool Beans has already arranged that for its guests coming for the New Year!
  • Taxis and Buses – They are running all night but the traffic is going to be very slow so it is still recommended to get the metro even knowing that it is going to be busy. So if you are going to use buses or taxis just be patient!
  • No Cell Phones – It usually stop working well close to the fireworks displays and especially during the show. Imagine 2 millino people trying to whish Happy New Year to their families and friends at the same time!!!
  • Good meeting point – Better use places like the big hotels (Copacabana Palace, Marriot or Othon Palace) as predetermined meeting points if anyone gets separated from the group.
  • Safety – Walking among a big crowd like this requires some precaution. The basic recommendation is to keep your wallet in the front pocket and never in the rear one.  Also, leave the Havaianas at the hotel and prefer use shoes avoiding get your feet cut at any of the broken glass left on the ground.
  • After the Fireworks – Stay at the beach and enjoy the music program. It will be for sure the smartest idea if you don’t want to be among the many people that will leave at the same time just after the fireworks display finishes.


We hope you all enjoy the New Year’s Eve in Rio de Janeiro, comfortably, safe and very, very happy!!!