The Ruins Park in Santa Teresa is a nice spot to take beautiful photos of the city. Unlike other viewpoints in the city that are overcrowded, this is a calm place with few people visiting. From the top, you can admire the view of the city center on the left and the view of the Guanabara Bay and the Sugarloaf Mountain on the right.
In the park, there are the ruins of the mansion that was the residence of Laurinda Santos Lobo. She was an art mecenas during the Belle Époque. Her house was a meeting point of intellectuals and artists in Rio de Janeiro. After her death, the mansion was abandoned for 40 years. All that was left were ruins. Now it is an art gallery. A modern staircase and a viewing platform were added to the building. The ruins park houses a variety of cultural events, but most people come here just for the view.
Santa Teresa was once an upper-class neighborhood but today that’s no longer truth. The neighborhood is trying to revitalize itself as an artistic hotspot. There are many art galleries, bars and restaurants often full of people on weekends. The famous Santa Teresa Tram is the symbol of the neighborhood. It was recently renovated after a tragic accident. Other interesting sites to visit while you are in Santa Teresa are the Tram Museum and the Museu da Chácara do Céu.
Despite its central location the neighborhood is difficult to access. I recommend going by car or taxi. Be careful while strolling around the streets. Just like in any other place in Rio de Janeiro, you must be alert to avoid being robbed.