NileGuide Expert Says:
Don't be startled by locals jumping on and off the tram as it clatters along - an unwritten rule holds that the ride is free for anyone who travels standing on the platforms on the side of the tram.
Rua Professor Lélio Gama, 65
20031-080 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
tel: +55 21 222 1003 / +55 21 242 2354
The Santa Teresa bonde (streetcar) is the last reminder of what was once Rio's principle form of public transport. But far from being just a historical artifact, the rattling yellow tram is great fun to ride, as it clatters over the iconic Arcos da Lapa and up the winding cobbled streets of Santa Teresa. Locals jump on and off the bonde as it rattles by – there is no charge for those who choose to stand on the running board instead of taking a seat. There are two lines – one to Paulo Mattos, and one to Dois Irmaoes. Both pass tram stops at Largo do Curvelo, where there is regular live samba on Sundays, and Largo do Guimaraes, which is the central point for the neighborhood's many excellent bars, restaurants and shops. Jump off at either point and you will be well-placed for exploring this bucolic neighborhood.