Insider's Guide to Rio de Janeiro

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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Don’t let the name fool you—Ruins Park, or Parque das Ruinas in Portuguese—isn’t just some abandoned relic of a bygone era. Well, the venue had been the mansion of a well-known Rio socialite, Laurinda Santos Lobo, whose early 20th-century balls were ... 

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Certified reviews by travelers like you.

anthony y

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2015

We when on a small group tour 2 couples and the guide around Santa Teresa and Rio de Janeiro's downtown by foot. The guide, Yvan from the tour company, a native from Santa Teresa. Has been more than great! Ask for him to get the most out of your trip!!!

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Ojas V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2015

This was a great walking tour through the downtown, using the subway, and the interesting bohemian neighborhood of Santa Teresa. Make sure you have Brazilian Reals, and be prepared to walk a few miles in the lively streets of Rio.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Herlena W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
August 2015

It was outstanding nd the tour guide was excellent.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

G V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

It was quite good. The guide was very knowledgeable and we went round the city. It is worth taking the trip.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Michael H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

We really enjoyed this tour, the pace, and the scenery. Our guide could speak English very well and was interesting. It was just my husband and I so we could hear all that was said and stop and take our time at the different sights. I would recommend this tour if you have time. There is a lot of walking so be sure to wear good comfortable shoes, the pavement is uneven and there a lot of ups and downs. I would not wear flip flops.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Meredith G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

My tour was led by Daniel, who was fantastic! Only one other person was on the tour with me, so it was basically like a private tour. You can tell how much Daniel loves his home town and how excited he is to share his experience in this unique city. His English is flawless and the tour was really relaxed yet informative. I'm glad I was able to experience Santa Teresa with a true local!

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Latasha S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

Very nice walking tour! Daniel was very friendly and informative! I really enjoyed taking the subway and getting to see another side of Brazilian life and culture!

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

ADRINE A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
May 2015

Santa Teresa is must see especially if the tram start working end of this year as it's under renovating. But the famous Selaron steps was the high light with its history.
I must mention our tour guid Daniel who had good knowledge and friendly.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Maria T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
May 2015

We had an excellent private tour. It was just two of us. The guide was very friendly, spoke good English and was very knowledgable.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Margaret D USA

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
May 2015

A great tour with a great tour guide. I very much enjoyed the tour. It was a mixed walking, subway, and bus tour and a very good way to see more of Rio than you usually would. The murals on the tour were very interesting and the walk down the tiled steps, Selaron's Staircase, was great.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Gary Joseph H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
April 2015

it was a very good, personalized tour. Ivan was our guide and he was superb.. We enjoyed talking the subway, buses, etc. to get a feel for the real Rio. The only drawback was that the area was tron up to redo the tram tracks. Good shopping and a nice area.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

NJ G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
April 2015

By far the best tour I booked on Viator. Very knowledgable and easy going local guide called Alex and only four if us in the tour. We saw lots that we would not have seen if we hadn't been on this tour.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

JESUS L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
April 2015

This was a unique tour that we enjoyed a lot. The local guide Ivan was knew what he was doing and gave us a very interesting tour. The fact that it was a small group made it an even better experience.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Michael W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2015

Alex was a great tour guide answering all the questions we could throw at him. We knew the tram was still not working and won't be for the foreseeable future. So, no surprise there. We walked a LOT and thoroughly enjoyed the entire time, remembering to apply sunscreen a couple of hours into it. There were only 4 of us on this tour and that made it even nicer although a lot of places were not open - perhaps because it was a Sunday or too early in the day for them to open. It was just how it was described - Centro, Lapa and Santa Teresa - a super value. As well, we learned to use the Metro - quite helpful. We realized that half day tours are enough for us, leaving some beach time to enjoy that day also..

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Eliot C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2015

My tour was really amazing! The small group was really small. Just me and the tour guide, Danny, who was also amazing. Would definitely recommend it!

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

scot s

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2015

Excellent. Daniel was our guide. Very knowledgeable and say going tour. Casual conversational style, not rehearsed. I would highly recommend.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Vicky H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2015

Beautiful neighbourhood and the steps were a highlight. Our guides were very good. Definitely recommend it.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Rhiannon S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2015

We had a fantastic time. Our tour guide Daniel was really knowledgeable and friendly. He not only had a great knowledge of Santa Teresa but gave us great advice for other aspects of our trip like using the Metro and best places to go during Carnival. I would highly recommend this tour.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Irina S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

This tour was great! "Small group' was really small: me and my husband. The tour guy Alex was the best guide we met in Rio: perfect English, deep knowledge in every aspect we asked about Rio or Brazil. Highly recommended.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Teddy

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

It was a great tour, interesting part of Rio to see, plus know about using the metro to move around, our tour guide Ivan Aives is an A+ plus guide, very knowledgable, explained in details, made the tour injoyable.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Stefan B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

A very good tour with a great guide!!!

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Laura B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Great tour, please use Urban Adventures for more tours. The guide was great and really informative, and showed us lots different things in the area. Well worth the money.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

Geraldine L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

Excellent insight into an historic part of Rio. Daniel led the way pointing out the areas of interest and providing some amusing and informative anecdotal information. Great introduction to using the subway and the buses if your nerve is up to it. Obviously retired grand prix drivers just move to driving buses in Santa Teresa! Thanks Daniel, we highly recommend this tour.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

LARascal

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

The tram unfortunately isn't working yet when we got there ( will reopen on the latter part of 2015 ), the whole walking, taking the subway, taking the bus experience made me feel more immersed with the tour than just hopping on a tour bus. We were only 3 on the tour which was really good. Our tour guide David was efficient and knowledgable.

Doing what: Small-Group Santa Teresa Discovery Tour from Rio de Janeiro

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