Winter is the ideal time to get to know the cities in the mountains in the state Rio de Janeiro. Petrópolis is the largest and most famous of them and was our choice to make a return trip from Rio de Janeiro. Known as the Imperial City, Petropolis was founded by Emperor Dom Pedro II himself and was baptized as a combination of the two words: Peter (Petrus) + city in Greek (Pólis), called “City of Peter”. During the time of the Empire, Italian and mainly German colonists immigrated to the city. The imperial buildings and architectural constructions with German influence give the city an European city feeling. Very special atmosphere!
Petropolis is only 66 km away from Rio de Janeiro, less than 1 hour by car driving up into the mountains. The trip takes nearly 1h40 by bus from Rio’s main bus terminal and costs between R$ 20,33 e R$ 32,61 per person one-way. Values and timetable can be checked here: http://www.unica-facil.com.br/
For those who want to do a return trip: the best would be to arrive early to enjoy the whole day because in Petrópolis there is a lot to do. Don’t drive back down the mountain at night because there is a lot of fog. If you have time, spend at least one night in the city. I recommend to check the dates for some special events at night because the city has a great cultural agenda.
I have prepared a suggestion of a 1-day itinerary in the city which can be divided into two for those who want to do everything more relaxed. Let’s get to it: