Spend a day touring the exquisite mountain town of Petropolis—known as the Imperial City since the time of Emperor Pedro II—to visit its regal buildings and charming streets.
After a convenient hotel pickup, ride 37 miles (60 km) to serene Petropolis, the mountain retreat of Brazil’s only 2 emperors. Breathe in the fresh air of the forest-blanketed Serra dos Orgaos as you pass by bucolic farms settled by German farmers from the Rhineland.
Visit the Imperial Museum, housed within the summer residence of Emperor Pedro II, to see the furniture, tapestries, and even the imperial crown worn by Brazil’s emperors—this magnificent headpiece is adorned with no less than 600 diamonds and 77 pearls. Admire the manicured gardens and neoclassical architecture of the one-time imperial residence as you learn about the emperor’s reign.
At the stunning Gothic Catedral Sao Pedro de Alcantara whose spire stretches up into the sky, pay your respects at the tomb of Brazil’s last emperor, his wife, and his daughter Isabel, known as the Redemptress.
Finally, marvel at the Palacio de Cristal—this stunning glass structure was imported from France for events and exhibits thrown by Princess Isabel, and it was the place she signed the Golden Law to abolish slavery in Brazil.