With modern air-conditioned stations and cars, Metro Rio provides a clean, quick and economical way to get around Rio de Janeiro during your vacation. It will get you within walking distance of most of the popular attractions in the city and help you connect to other forms of transit for the few attractions that are too far from a station for walking. Signage and announcements are in both English and Portugese, although the public-address announcements are sometimes hard to hear.
Metro Rio consists of 3 lines with a total of 41 stations.
Line 1, which serves the popular tourist areas of Ipanema and Cocacobana in the south runs north to Pres. Vargas station near downtown and then turns inland to Uruguai Station. It operates fully underground and is designated on the map by the colour orange.
Line 2, designated by the colour green, runs from the north zone all the way out to the neighbourhood of Pavuna in the northwest suburbs. It operates both at grade level and on elevated track except on weekdays it doubles up with Line 1 where it goes underground. Line 2 is designated by the colour green. It is important to note when travelling on weekdays between Central and Botafogo Station, where Lines 1 and 2 overlap, you must pay attention to the signage above the doors on the train when boarding or you may find yourself on the wrong train. Line 1 trains are signed "Ipanema - Saens Pena" in red LED lights and Line 2 trains are signed "Botafogo - Pavuna in green LED lights.
Line 4 (although there are 3 lines, none are designated line 3) was opened just in time for the 2016 Olympic Games hosted by Rio. It is designated on the map by the colour yellow and connects General Osório Station in the east with Oceânico in the west. This new line makes it much quicker getting from the popular south zone to Barra da Tijuca where you will find spectacular scenery, amazing beaches and superb shopping. If you are starting your trip on line 1 you will need to transfer to line 4 at General Osorio Station, but no additional fare is required.
On weekends Line 1 service does not overlap Line 2; instead it terminates at Estacio Station and all transfers between lines 1 and 2 must be made there. Also on weekends, Cidade Nova station is closed. It is not serviced by Line 2 and Line 1 trains branch off to Estacio Station prior reaching it.
The majority of stations where the two lines overlap during weekdays have central platforms making it easy to transfer between lines without making your way from one platform to another.
Like most rapid transit systems in large cities the metro gets extremely busy during the morning and afternoon commutes. The busiest times are 8am-10am and 5pm-8pm. As a tourist you will have a more relaxing and enjoyable trip if you can plan your schedule around these peak periods, however you will also likely be travelling opposite the heaviest flow of commuters.
MetroRio also operates some bus routes to enhance and extend the metro system. Be sure to read our page on buses for important information about the various options for connecting to buses from the metro. Also be sure to see the page on fares for information about how the fare system plays out with all of this.
It is a good idea to study the Rio Metro maps while reviewing the above information as it will help you get a better understanding of how the system is laid out. Spending some time reviewing all of the information on our site will help make getting around in Rio much easier for you.
The Rio Metro at a glance
- Hours: Mon-Sat 5am - 12 Midnight; Sun and Holidays 7am - 11pm *Currently line 4 is operating between 6am and 9pm.
- Frequency: During peak hours on weekdays trains run every 4m30s and every 2m15s where the two lines overlap. At other times the frequency can vary from about 5-10 minutes.
- Transfers: On weekdays you can transfer between Line 1 and Line 2 anywhere between Central and Botafogo Station. On weekends and holidays you can only transfer at Estacio Station
- Telephone information: 0800 595 1111 / 4003-2111
- Washroom facilities are available at the following stations: Pavuna, Carioca, New Town, Siqueira Campos, Cantagalo and General Osório.
- Tickets: You can purchase tickets or reload fare media at ticket offices or ATM machines located in the stations - Cash Only.
- Turnstiles: Enter through the turnstiles with the blue sign (pink sign also okay if you have a disability OR if no one else is going through). Insert unitary (single ride) tickets into the slot. Do not insert prepaid tickets, just touch them on the sensor. If everything in okay you will get a green arrow, if there is a problem with the fare you will see a red 'X'.
- Restricted Cars: During weekday rush hours there are special cars second from the back of each train, indicated by pink signage and markings on the floor, that are exclusively for female passengers. If you are a woman or a group of women, these cars are usually not as busy as the other cars.
For more information about Metro Rio visit the MetroRio website.
Interactive Metro Map with streets and attractions
Open the following Rio de Janeiro Metro Map overlaid on Google Maps to visualize the Metro lines in relation to the overall city and attractions.