Rio de Janeiro is better known as a party spot than a family holiday destination, but in fact the city has a huge amount to offer travelers with children. And while there's lots of outdoorsy fun to be pursued here, the family-friendly activities extend to rainy day options too.
Rio harbors a wealth of museums, galleries and cultural spaces, and many of these will appeal to children and teenagers just as much as they appeal to parents.
They may lie a little way from the beaches, but many of the best spots are well worth taking a metro or cab ride to. One standout is Parque das Ruinas, in Santa Teresa, which offers spectacular views as well as a small play park and regular free events such as puppet shows and children's theater. Santa Teresa can itself be seen as a giant open air museum, as its old cobbled streets are lined with fine examples of colonial architecture. Families should also check out the impressive Catete Palace, a quick metro ride from Copacabana and Ipanema. The former presidential residence is grand enough in itself, but it's the lovely gardens and great playground that make it a real hit with kids.
Another top destination for families is the MAC Modern Art Museum in Niteroi - kids will love the ferry ride across the bay almost as much as the flying-saucer design of the museum itself.