São Mateus Fort and Morro da Guia, in Cabo Frio, are highly Instagrammable

São Mateus Fort and Morro da Guia reveal surprising angles of the city of Cabo Frio seen from above.

Praia do Forte - Jhony Biach

Two significant cultural attractions in Cabo Frio, on the Costa do Sol in Rio de Janeiro, reveal the city from surprising – and beautiful – angles. One of the main postcards of the town, Forte São Mateus, shows all the beauty of the beaches and dunes of the municipality, while Morro da Guia invites us to sunset with the city at our feet. “It is a joy to have outdoor cultural attractions that allow us to appreciate all the nature that surrounds us,” comments Maria Inês Oliveros, president of Cabo Frio Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Enchanting locals and tourists alike, Forte de São Mateus remains sovereign in the left corner of the most famous beach in Cabo Frio. It is impossible to take a walk to those sides and not go up to the historic Portuguese construction of the 17th century. The angle is extraordinary! To surfers gliding on the waves – to the gigantic white dunes on the way to Arraial do Cabo.

The internal space can be visited from Monday to Friday, from 9 am to 5 pm, and on Saturdays and Sundays, from 9 am to 6 pm. Tip: visit the fort before 10 am and after 4 pm when the heat is milder and less traffic. Remember that, for a visit to the place, a mask is mandatory.


Speaking of tips, the left corner of the beach, called “Lido” or “Canto do Forte” by Cape Friars, is a real find for those traveling with children. The stretch of fine white sand near the historic building has a sea without waves, natural pools at low tide. The scenery includes a rustic “square,” with colorful fishing boats, benches, and trees.

Guia Hill

The chapel at the top of the hill always attracts the attention of those who cross the Feliciano Sodré Bridge. Probably, not everyone has the curiosity to go up there to enjoy the view. A tip: it’s worth it!

Access is made on foot; that is, the car must be left on the edge of the Itajuru Channel. The climb, which takes about ten to fifteen minutes, deserves to be done at dusk for two reasons: avoid the sun on your head and allow yourself to enjoy the sunset.

The view reveals postcards at the top of the hill, such as Praia do Forte, the Canal with its colorful boats, and the nearby Arraial do Cabo.

The sky filling with colors shares the attention with the simple building in honor of Nossa Senhora da Guia. On the outside of the chapel, the pillars allow you to make the photos even more produced and charming. The little church is only open once a year, on the Easter holiday.


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