Rio has a museum that is almost a theme park dedicated to science
When the theme is museums, today it is difficult to surpass Museu do Amanhã’s proeminence with its futuristic architecture built in the area Rio renovated for the 2016 Olympic Games. But there is another option a 30-minute drive from Downtown that’s worthy paying a visit: Museu da Vida.
It’s located at the Fiocruz Campus. Fiocruz is one of the most respected scientific research institutions in Brazil. The museum uses part of a large park and the Morisque Pavillion, a building in neo-moorish architectural style raised in Manguinhos, a district at the margins of Avenida Brasil, one of the most important traffic routes of the city. Fiocruz produces vaccines including those to fight common tropical diseases.
Museu da Vida (or Life Museum) was created to talk about science, public health and technology in a creative and fun way with activities designed for visitors of all ages. Its collection is composed of 2,100 items, from personal belongings of the first researches of the institute to lab equipment linked to the production of vaccines and medicines. Until August 27th it is possible to visit a temporary exhibit about the Aedis Aegypti the fearsome mosquito responsible for spreading dengue, Zika virus, Yellow Fever and Chicungunya.
The park has 2,400 sq meters of open space and a pavillion for other activities. In the Science Park the visitor can engage in fun tasks like figuring out how the human eye works, climbing a giant cell or generate light without electric energy. You can also go on a trail or visit the insect collection of an important researcher that fought the Yellow Fever in the early 20th Century in Rio along with Oswaldo Cruz, a physician, bacteriologist and founder of Fiocruz.
The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday, 9AM-4:30PM and on Satudays 10AM-4PM. The entrance is at Avenida Brasil, where is located the Visitors Center. There you can find a scale model of the park to help you organize your visit and also support structure and a restaurant where you can buy some snacks or even have lunch. An important detail: all activity is free.