The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian

The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian

The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian
4.5
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
With architecture inspired by the Mayan pyramids of Mexico, the conical shape is believed to give proximity to God. Four stained glass windows run from floor to ceiling forming a cross at the top. Acoustics are "heavenly" here!
Duration: < 1 hour
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Plan your visit
The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Centro
Downtown Rio is the place where this city was born. With modern skyscrapers sharing space with historical buildings and landmarks, this neighbourhood is living proof that the old and the new can live together harmoniously. As you would expect, downtown is where all major companies house their offices. However, the region isn’t restricted to businesses. Gems such like the “Paço Imperial,” which is a cultural centre that used to serve as a residence for governors of Brazil, can be found here. Pedra do Sal, a Monday night street party, is also in this neighbourhood. This landmark is the birthplace of samba and is famous for its “roda de sambas” (“dance circles”). Stop in for one and get closer to discovering where Brazilian happiness comes from.
How to get there
  • Carioca • 4 min walk
  • Cinelândia • 7 min walk
Reach out directly
See what travellers are saying
  • KarenM1_10
    1,044 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Interesting Architecture
    Since we arrived during Carnival, we could not visit the interior of the Cathedral. The outside looked like a pyramid. Our guide mentioned that it was completed in the 1970s and holds 20,000 people. I googled the cathedral when we returned home, and it looks breathtaking inside. I would have this at the top of my list if we returned to this city.
    Visited February 2023
    Written 26 May 2023
  • lisajlb
    Westhoughton, United Kingdom1,476 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Different to most Cathedrals
    I try to visit a Cathedral in every main city I visit. This reminded me of the Wigwam in Liverpool UK. On the outside, a 70s design that is not beautiful by any stretch of the imagination. Inside though, the stain glass windows are impressive.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 26 October 2023
  • Reservarlden
    London, United Kingdom686 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Well worth a look
    The unique cathedral in Rio Centro is well worth a look. Not your typical looking cathedral. Step inside and amaze your eyes at the structure and the incredible stained glass windows, No admission charge and plenty of seating.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 9 February 2024
  • AlexSwallow
    Sheffield, United Kingdom1,668 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    One of the most unique- and amazing- cathedrals I've ever been to
    So pleased we visited the cathedral! It is near the downtown station for the Santa Teresa tram (round the corner from the Lapa arches). It is difficult to describe as I have very little to compare it to, you just have to go! So much more interesting and impressive than I had imagined.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 14 February 2024
  • Steve D
    Divonne-les-Bains, France797 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Certainty doesn’t look lie a cathedral
    A very modern looking building which apparently was inspired by Apollo 11. Frankly not to my liking as am more a traditionalist and prefer a cathedral to like the part. Also I felt the concrete structure looked in need of a major clean up. Inside was more pleasing to the eye and the glass cross in the ceiling was impressive. Best of all for me was the four stain glass ‘stripes’ cascading down to the floor level.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 28 February 2024
  • Vicki
    London, United Kingdom633 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Iconic & Beautiful Building!
    What an experience! Visited this cathedral as part of a walking tour. The structure is out of this world and it looks like an upside down cone! The 4 floor to ceiling stained glasses inside are stunning in different colours depicting different things. It is peaceful & massive inside and the altar too is beautiful. Don’t forget to look at the ceiling as well, Highly recommended!
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 17 March 2024
  • Gopi D
    180 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful church inside and outside
    Beautiful church not only from outside but also from inside. This church is different in that it does not have the influence of European churches. When we went there, a service was in progress and all the clergies, nuns etc. were dressed in beautiful white robe and it was very nice to witness that. You must visit if in Rio.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 25 March 2024
  • Rachel G
    46 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Unlike any cathedral I've seen!
    Very beautiful cathedral! Was impressive from both the outside and inside. My husband and I didn't do any tours, so we got here by uber. Some of the surrounding area didn't seem too safe, so I'm glad we opted to uber from Sugarloaf (was like $5USD). It did take a while for another uber to pick us up after (15 minutes or so) to head to the steps after. This cathedral was unlike any I've seen before! Was very impressive and big. Was a very quick stop for us, but was fun!
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 March 2024
  • Dawnie
    London, United Kingdom13 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    San Sebastián Cathedral. Rio de Janeiro
    As other people have said, you don’t need to do a tour to get into the cathedral. There isn’t an entrance fee. Again like other people I just got an Uber there. The cathedral is an unusual shape and has the stunning stained glass windows. It lacks the idolatry of Catholic Churches and Cathedrals, but I think, is all the better for it. I found it to be a very moving experience. I am sure it doesn’t matter what, if any, religion you practice, you would find it a calming place just to sit and reflect. Enjoy 😊
    Visited April 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 14 April 2024
  • Tom G
    San Diego, California239 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Metropolitan Cathedral is a work of art
    The spectacular Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian is just a few blocks away in the City Center. This cone-shaped modernist cathedral was designed by architect Edgar Fonseca and constructed between 1964 and 1979. He used streamlined, reinforced concrete columns to provide an unobstructed interior space. It contrasts with the more ornate, Baroque, and Neoclassical styles of traditional cathedrals. Its 106-foot-high nave creates an impressive sense of space, enhanced by a bronze crucifix centered above. We were inspired standing to the side, marveling at the angles, color in the stained glass, and sense of peace in a space that can hold 20,000 worshippers. Guided tours are available.
    Visited May 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 23 April 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles2,768 reviews
Excellent
1,301
Very good
1,040
Average
344
Poor
57
Terrible
26

Skeney57
Sydney, Australia23,965 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
You either love it or hate it! I must admit I didn't rate it on the outside view but once I'd been inside it grew on me? The Cathedral only dates back to 1979 but its design and structure are pretty interesting. Plain concrete left to weather and the interlocking 4 stained glass panels are very special, highlighting the cross at the dome. Well worth a quick visit and the bell tower is a good touch! All round a stunning example of a modern take on what is normally an ancient & gothic building in most cities.
Written 15 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mel7155
Singapore, Singapore1,270 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Solo
To me, I felt that this church follows the brutalism architecture of the communist bloc countries in the 1950s to 1980s during the Cold War era . The building from the outside is to me, pretty ugly as it is too concrete and not awesome .

The interior is also rather different and as it is very big, you will feel very list or insignificant in the church due to the vast concrete spaces it provides . Nice to see a. Architectural take of a place of worship.
Written 24 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tom G
San Diego, CA239 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023 • Couples
The spectacular Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian is just a few blocks away in the City Center. This cone-shaped modernist cathedral was designed by architect Edgar Fonseca and constructed between 1964 and 1979. He used streamlined, reinforced concrete columns to provide an unobstructed interior space. It contrasts with the more ornate, Baroque, and Neoclassical styles of traditional cathedrals. Its 106-foot-high nave creates an impressive sense of space, enhanced by a bronze crucifix centered above. We were inspired standing to the side, marveling at the angles, color in the stained glass, and sense of peace in a space that can hold 20,000 worshippers. Guided tours are available.
Written 23 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dawnie
London, UK13 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Solo
As other people have said, you don’t need to do a tour to get into the cathedral. There isn’t an entrance fee. Again like other people I just got an Uber there. The cathedral is an unusual shape and has the stunning stained glass windows. It lacks the idolatry of Catholic Churches and Cathedrals, but I think, is all the better for it. I found it to be a very moving experience. I am sure it doesn’t matter what, if any, religion you practice, you would find it a calming place just to sit and reflect. Enjoy 😊
Written 14 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rachel G
46 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Very beautiful cathedral! Was impressive from both the outside and inside. My husband and I didn't do any tours, so we got here by uber. Some of the surrounding area didn't seem too safe, so I'm glad we opted to uber from Sugarloaf (was like $5USD). It did take a while for another uber to pick us up after (15 minutes or so) to head to the steps after.
This cathedral was unlike any I've seen before! Was very impressive and big. Was a very quick stop for us, but was fun!
Written 30 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

sfarland
Flagstaff, AZ103 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Couples
I was unable to enter the Cathedral for my own cultural beliefs, but the outside was absolutely stunning and I would definitely recommend others to go inside. It's unique to its core as most are architecturally different but this was beautiful!
Written 26 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gopi D
Germantown, Maryland, United States180 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Beautiful church not only from outside but also from inside. This church is different in that it does not have the influence of European churches. When we went there, a service was in progress and all the clergies, nuns etc. were dressed in beautiful white robe and it was very nice to witness that. You must visit if in Rio.
Written 25 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jody C
Toronto, Canada136 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Nice beautiful church in the city. A church with no window, no air condition and yet you feel the cool air inside. beautiful stain glass.
Written 20 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vicki
London, UK633 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
What an experience! Visited this cathedral as part of a walking tour. The structure is out of this world and it looks like an upside down cone! The 4 floor to ceiling stained glasses inside are stunning in different colours depicting different things. It is peaceful & massive inside and the altar too is beautiful. Don’t forget to look at the ceiling as well, Highly recommended!
Written 17 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

מוטי ל
Karmiel, Israel545 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Couples
another mater piece of oscar nimayer's group. unique modern cathedral, can be combined with the tram ride to santa teresa.
Written 6 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 497
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian, Rio de Janeiro - Tripadvisor

All Rio de Janeiro HotelsRio de Janeiro Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Rio de Janeiro
All things to do in Rio de Janeiro
Day Trips in Rio de Janeiro
RestaurantsFlightsHoliday homesTravel StoriesCruisesCar Hire