Oscar Niemeyer's world-famous flying saucer of art
The iconic home of the Contemporary Art Museum (MAC) is the work of one of Rio's most famous sons, Oscar Niemeyer, who stands among the 20th century's most celebrated architects. Only his death in December 2012, at the age of 104, stopped him from his work, the passion for design that his city inspired in him remaining strong until the end.
Affectionately known as the 'flying saucer', the futuristic design is unmistakable against the backdrop of Niterói's hills and the waters of Guanabara Bay to the front and the view from inside out across the water to Sugarloaf is just as impressive. Sometimes overshadowed by their home, the exhibitions tend to vary in quality but have included works by notable artists such as Cildo Meireles, Hélio Oiticica and Carlos Vergara, and the restaurant in the belly of the building offers a great venue for lunch or an inexpensive snack.
Getting there: Take a ferry from Praça VX in Centro to Praça Arariboia (20 minutes, R$4.50), and from there it is a ten-minute taxi ride to the museum.