National Museum of Rio de Janeiro

National Museum of Rio de Janeiro (77)

From the replica of a 13-metre-large TITANOSAURUS to the beautiful sarcophagus of Sha Amon, i.e. "Amon's singer", god of Ancient Egypt.

With a collection of more than 20 million items focusing on the areas of science, such as zoology, archaeology or ethnology, something will surely draw your attention.

The main building of the National Museum of Rio de Janeiro may not have kept the splendour of what was once the Imperial Palace of São Cristovão, when it was inhabited by the Portuguese Royal Family, but its impressive neoclassical architecture is not going to leave you indifferent, nor the magnificent collections it houses inside. Thus, if you are taking a leisurely stroll around the Quinta da Boa Vista, you should not rule out a visit to one of the largest and best Natural History museums throughout South America.

Already in 1818, under the name of Royal Museum and located in the Campo de Santa Anna, the museum founded by Dom João VI, at that time Prince Regent of Brazil, Portugal and the Algarve, was opened with the aim of promoting the colony's cultural progress. With the help of important European naturalists and scientists, the Royal Museum's collection was considerably expanded, but it was the donations made by Emperor Pedro II that increased the quantity and value of the museum's exhibits. Particularly, after the transfer of part of his personal collection, which included an impressive amount of valuable and rich Egyptian art, such as sarcophagi and even mummies.

After the arrival of the Republic of Brazil, and after a long period of neglect, in 1982 it was decided to move the Royal Museum to the old Palace of São Cristovão, which, being managed by the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, it was renamed as National Museum. We would like to let you know that the palace's original decor, or what was left of it after the destruction and its sale following the Proclamation of the Republic can be found in the Imperial Museum in Petropolis.

Currently, with the same purpose with which the museum was created, besides being recognised for its vast and rich collections, it is also considered one of the best centres for study and scientific research. Much of the building is intended for research areas and laboratories, as well as featuring an area forthe study and preservation of plants and centennial trees.

The exhibition is organised into sections, among which we would highlight Evolution of Life, which tells the story of Earth and the first beings that inhabited it, Following the footsteps of Humanity, a fascinating journey through the evolution of mankind, Brazilian Archaeology, including its showpiece, Luzia, the oldest skeleton in the Americas, Brazilian Indigenous Ethnology, with its diversity of art and ingenuity of Brazilian native peoples, as well as its curious sections devoted to Zoology.

They organise many activities, and it is a great idea if you are traveling with children.

Venture a walk through history. Wander among huge dinosaur skeletons, observe prehistoric fossils, peek into some of the exhibited sarcophagi, marvel at the collection of insects or stuffed birds, or get amazed by meteorites ... The National Museum will surely surprise you.

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