Church of Our Lady of the Candelaria

The Church of Our Lady of the Candelaria is one of the most spectacular buildings in Rio, the oldest parts of it dating back to the founding of the city.

Step back in time

Not much has changed in the Church of Our Lady of the Candelaria in the 200 years since it was last refurbished, and that’s what makes it a must-visit for history buffs. The Roman Catholic church serves as a window into the early days of Rio’s colonial history, and speaks to the starting point for the cultural melting pot the city has now become. More than that, the architecture–and the scale–is stunning, and beautifully preserved.

The most visited church in Rio

This church is Rio’s most popular, despite being smack-bang in the middle of the business district now. The minute you walk inside, it’s not hard to see why–the ornate interior is unlike anything in the world. More to the point, the interior shows a lot of the local culture and the city’s roots as a meeting of two very different peoples. Even if you’re not religious, it’s a nice place to sit quietly and contemplate your place in the universe.