The bonde is the last of the historic streetcars that once crisscrossed the city. Its romantic clatter through the cobbled streets is the archetypal sound of bohemian Santa Teresa. Currently the bonde travels every 15 to 20 minutes from the cable-car station in Centro over the scenic Arcos da Lapa and as far as Largo do Guimarães in the heart of Santa Teresa.

After a tragic accident in 2011 the bonde was taken out of commission while much-needed improvements to the track were made. After more than four years the line reopened – but now it only travels 1.7km of its 10km of track. Although work on further sections of the track has been promised, the project's estimated cost (around R$100 million) makes it unlikely that the bonde will continue beyond Largo do Guimarães any time soon.