The downtown city center is the starting point for discovering Historical Rio. The areas known as Castelo and Praça Quize the first to be inhabited and you should try and visit the Paço Imperial, the São José, Carmo and Candelária churches, the Tiradentes Palace, streets like the Ruas da Alfândega and Ouvidor and historical alleys, the Arco dos Teles and Largo do Paço, where the bars are full at happy hour, the Bank of Brazil Cultural Center and Casa França Brasil. Down towards the Praça Mauá and the docks is the São Bento Monastery, one of the most valuable examples of Rio’s historical and artistic heritage, where a mass with Gregorian chant every Sunday morning.
Avenida Rio Branco is the backbone of the city center, stretching from Praça Mauá to Cinelândia, where one can visit Municipal Theater, the National Library, and the National Fine Arts Museum. Praça Tiradentes and Lapa arches have history all around them.
Apart from the city center, there are many other places or historical monuments. From the Quinta da Boa Vista, with the National Museum, to the Ilha Fidcal, where the last Imperial Ball was held; from the forts ar Leme, Copacabana and São João, to modem monuments such as the Maracanã Stadium, or the Rio-Niterói brige, from the old houses such as those found in the Largo do Boticário and Santa Teresa, to majestic bindings such as Copacabana Palace Hotel or even apartment buildings that are well preserved examples or art-deco architecture, Rio is an open air museum.