Museu Historico Nacional

Museu Historico Nacional, Rio de Janeiro: Hours, Address, Museu Historico Nacional Reviews: 4.5/5

Museu Historico Nacional
4.5
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
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About
Originally a fortress and an ammunition depot dated of Colonial Brazil, the National Historical Museum created in 1922 became one of the most important museums of history in the country, housing a collection of circa 300,000 items. It holds 9,000 square meters galleries of long term and temporary exhibitions, besides a Library and Historical and Institutional Archives .
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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The area
Address
Neighborhood: Centro
Downtown Rio is the place where this city was born. With modern skyscrapers sharing space with historical buildings and landmarks, this neighbourhood is living proof that the old and the new can live together harmoniously. As you would expect, downtown is where all major companies house their offices. However, the region isn’t restricted to businesses. Gems such like the “Paço Imperial,” which is a cultural centre that used to serve as a residence for governors of Brazil, can be found here. Pedra do Sal, a Monday night street party, is also in this neighbourhood. This landmark is the birthplace of samba and is famous for its “roda de sambas” (“dance circles”). Stop in for one and get closer to discovering where Brazilian happiness comes from.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

4.5
912 reviews
Excellent
563
Very good
276
Average
57
Poor
6
Terrible
10

Trek-Always
Alpharetta, GA2,493 contributions
Friends
Things that may be helpful: 1) This museum is in Centro which is very empty on weekends. It is not safe to walk to the museum or around the area during weekends. We took a car from our hotel in Ipanema and had the driver wait for the 2-3 hours we were inside. He reported that he saw 3 robberies during that period. Just a quick heads-up to take care in your visit. 2) Entrance was no charge on Sunday. 3) Almost all displays had explanations in both Portuguese and English. 4) Some rooms are air conditioned and some are open to the outside. It can be hot so dress lightly.

This museum is well done. Displays were interesting and well presented. In my view, a lot of the turmoil of the 20th century was glossed over, but all other time periods were well covered. I wish we had done this museum earlier in our trip, and definitely before going to Petropolis.

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Written February 24, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Dear Sir, Thanks for your nice evaluation about the Museu Histórico Nacional, Sincerely, Angela Cardoso Guedes Press Advisor Museu Histórico Nacional Brasil
Written February 27, 2015
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Sanna X
Sweden36 contributions
It took us ca 2 hours to see the part of the museum we were interested in (history of Brazil) and it was really interesting, good AC inside, important on a hot day and nice break from the always-busy-city.
Written November 3, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Dear Sanna X, we are happy that you have enjoyed your visit! Thanks for your comment and evaluation!
Written November 4, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Frederic W
Rio de Janeiro, RJ384 contributions
Family
I have been to a lot of Museums in NY, Paris, Italy... so I was kind of nervous to go to this one and come out disappointed as Rio de Janeiro is more a city that strikes you for its natural beauty and beaches - Museums hardly feature in the capital of Samba and carnival. However I must say that the National History Museum is absolutely worth it - we got there a bit early at 1 pm on Saturday (the Museum only opens from 2 to 6 pm) but that was not a problem as we had a truly delicious lunch at the Bistro The Line which is attached to the museum. The food is fantastic! I thought that would be as good as it was going to get, but the museum itself has a series of displays from indian art of the Amazons to fabulous paintings and art from the Portuguese Dynasty. There is also a huge collection of old coins from all over the world! Everyone will find something that catches your attention and imagination - a definite 5 out of 5!
Written January 20, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Prezado Senhor, Agradecemos sua avaliação do Museu Histórico Nacional, na certeza de que a mesma muito nos incentiva a prosseguir na missão de preservar e divulgar esse patrimônio da Nação brasileira. Volte sempre! Atenciosamente, Cidália Ribeiro Departamento de Comunicação Museu Histórico Nacional
Written July 21, 2017
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Patrick
60 contributions
I decided to go to this museum as it was a rainy day in Rio and I was interested in learning about some of the history of Rio and Brazil. I’ll start of by saying it is worth the 10 Real entry fee. The museum has a good collection of artifacts, paintings, and displays documenting the history of Brazil. I was disappointed that what I can only assume were good portions of the museum were shut down for maintenance. They were painting the walls in the middle of the day, so I feel like I missed out on a lot. Some of the staff were unnecessarily rude as well. Despite these negatives, I would say that it is still a good way to spend a rainy afternoon in Rio.
Written November 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Dear visitor, at first we would like to thank your visiting and your sincere comment. It is true that we are under maintenance in some areas of the museum, but it happens because of emergencial actions to prevent damage to our collection due to rain specially - and we have tried not to disturb a lot my unfortunately it could happen. We are very surprised that our staff had been "rude" and we would like to apologize because we rarely receive complains such yours - please check other evaluations we have received. We hope you can have a better experience in your next visit.
Written December 3, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

IlanSaoPaulo
Sao Paulo12 contributions
Couples
The museum was closed Monday 30, because it was a Monday, a day during which the Museum closes for the weekly rest of its functionaries. Then it was closed Tuesday, 31, because it was the day before New Year´s. And obviously it was also closed Wednesday, January 1st. So, if you were or will be in Rio around holidays, check carefully the museum schedule, so as not to waste your time and effort, as we did.
Written January 3, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

ReadyToGoHome
Marshall, VA36 contributions
Solo
Okay, so my family was not interested in visiting the museum with me. Its great. How much do you know about Brazilian history? Learn it here. From the native people to modern history, this is an excellent opportunity to learn about Brazil. I did not rent the English headset, most of the exhibit information is also in English. If you are interested in history, its a must see.
Written January 17, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jake
Minneapolis, MN125 contributions
I had a perception in my mind of the history of Brazil being rather ruthless. This exhibit did not make me feel that way. It made me feel like it was definitely the perspective of the Portuguese. I wanted to learn more about the truth and brutality of the African slave trade and the wars the with indigenous people. This exhibit seemed to focus more on the Portuguese. I don't think that is a bad thing but just wanted a more holistic approach to their history. I am a history nerd and I studied Brazilian history online almost every night while in Rio. This exhibit left me almost with more questions than answers, and I found that the stuff online was almost better than this exhibit.
Written March 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thanks for your visit and evaluation!
Written March 8, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Allan W.
Pomona, CA154 contributions
Couples
We only visited the permanent exhibit, but it was definitely worthwhile. Exhibit begins with first humans known to inhabit the area and indigenous groups, but then has well-displayed artifacts from colonial times and into the present. Free entrance on Sunday and it wasn’t crowded. No problem if you don’t read Portuguese, since the full texts of captions are in English.
Written August 5, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thank you for your visit and evaluation!
Written August 7, 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

midway42
Minnesota2,936 contributions
Solo
I visited this museum on my first full day in the city. Mentioned in any half-reputable guidebook, the Museu Historic Nacional is located in the Castelo neighborhood around quite a bit of construction. Admission is a very reasonable R$8. An audio guide is offered next to the ticket desk but entirely not necessary if you can read English.

The museum is essentially divided into two sections: the chronologic permanent collection and everything else. First, the main exhibit starts on the second floor, beginning with an introductory video in English and subsequent explanation of “Oreretama,” the pre-Columbian cultures that inhabited the continent in prehistoric times. This is somewhat logically followed by a significant amount of information on the Portuguese and other colonial nations (mainly the Dutch and French), and finally by the monarchy of Pedro I and II and the beginning of the Republic. Sprinkled throughout are themes of culture, slavery, the coffee and sugar industries, and Brazil’s first constitution among other topics. Second, the ground floor contains a somewhat eclectic mix of old carriages and automobiles along with a collection of cannons. There is a small but adequate gift shop and a very above-average cafe that completes the experience.

In summary, this museum matched the somewhat extravagant promotion proffered by my guidebooks. It’s difficult to encapsulate an entire country’s history under a single roof but the curators seem to have done a fairly balanced job; I had been reading about the history of Brazil for the past three months and every major topic I learned about was covered. While the cannons and vehicles provided an amusing diversion at best, the main exhibit was excellent and should be on any “top ten” list for those spending even a couple days in town. Even the customer service was memorable (in a museum!), as I was stopped by several guides along the way who pointed out part of an exhibit I missed. Thumbs up and highly recommended.
Written June 30, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Dear Sir, Thanks for your nice evaluation about the Museu Histórico Nacional, Sincerely, Angela Cardoso Guedes Press Advisor Museu Histórico Nacional Brasil
Written July 1, 2015
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

ehn0424
Upstate New York56 contributions
Family
Fairly typical museum of national history though the introductory video is strangely self referential and absorbed. Interesting political history but really short changes the role of slavery. Some wonderful artifacts. Be aware that on Saturday it does not open until 2pm. Kind of out of the way.
Written February 21, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Museu Historico Nacional

Museu Historico Nacional is open:
  • Wed - Fri 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Sat - Sun 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
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