Igreja Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro
The bairro Glória is named after the dazzling white Igreja Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro (Praça Nossa Senhora da Glória, tel. 21/2225-2869, 9 a.m.–noon and 1–5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m.–noon Sat.–Sun., free), perched dramatically atop the Morro da Glória. Visiting the church involves a steep climb up the Ladeira da Glória or a less exhausting ride up the recently restored 1940 funicular (access at Rua do Russell 300).
This early baroque church (built between 1714 and 1739) is one of the most stunning in Rio. In fact, it was a personal favorite of the Brazilian royal family (many princes and princesses were baptized here). Boasting an unusual octagonal shape, its interior is adorned with marvelous blue-and-white Portuguese azulejo panels by reputed artist Mestre Valentim.
Behind the Igreja Nossa Senhora da Glória do Outeiro, the Museu da Imperial Irmandade de Nossa Senhora da Glória (tel. 21/2225-2869, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Sat.–Sun., R$2) houses a small museum with religious art, ex-votos and some personal belongings of Empress Teresa Cristina.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition