Image by Tom Le Mesurier Lonely Planet
This handsomely landscaped park is a pleasant escape from busy Rua das Laranjeiras outside its sphinx-guarded gates. It has a small wooded area and a tiny lake with ducks, and there are always a few cariocas lounging on the grass.
Designed by French landscape architect Gochet (with later flourishes by Roberto Burle Marx), the park is also home to the dramatic Palácio das Laranjeiras, the state governor's residence (not open to the public). The palace overlooks the west side of the park and is partially hidden by a thicket of trees.