Visiting the Imperial Museum in Petropolis is a fascinating experience!
Petrópolis is, in fact, a popular summer holiday spot whose main attraction is the former Summer Palace of the second Brazilian Emperor Pedro II, Pedro I’s son. Also known as the Imperial City of Brazil, it is 65 km away from noisy Rio.
You can get there on your own (three buses required) or you can take an organized tour from Rio de Janeiro (85 reales at the time of this review).
The museum has a lot of memorabilia of that period.
The guided tour is simply excellent! You are given especial shoes (slippers) so that the wooden floors don’t get damaged. You can visit most of the places of the Palace and you are shown oddities, such as the Empress’ comb, toothbrush, stockings, sumptuous furniture and jewerly, etc. Costumes are also on display, as well as crowns and other imperial ornaments. There are even presents given to his mistress by the Emperor, all made in pure gold of course!
No pictures are allowed inside the palace. However, do take your camera because you can take pictures in its superb gardens, as well as in other parts of the palace. Don't miss the chariots exhibition or the laboratorios devoted to the conservation of the palace properties outside the building!
It is true that the palace itself is not terribly impressive, not at least compared to European palaces! However, many museums and Palaces in Europe should learn how to organize a visit as the one it is offered in Petropolis! Congratulations to the people in charge!
A must when in Rio! Educational and totally worthwhile!
Tip: If you have the time, spend one or two days in Petropolis. It is a trip to tranquility! I wish I could have stayed!
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