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For an old-fashioned day trip visit the island of Paquetá in Guanabara Bay, a favorite destination since the early 1800s, when the Emperor Dom João VI began spending his summers on the island. In some ways not much has changed. No cars are allowed on Paquetá. Visitors toodle about the island on rented bicycles (R$2 an hour) or relax in horse-drawn carriages (R$35 for an hour, including stops). The island's attraction lies not in any one spot, but rather in the conjunction of its quiet pace, cobblestone streets, tree-lined beaches, graceful old summer homes, and wonderful views of the bay. Many visitors stop for a fresh-cooked fish at one of numerous beachside kiosks, but there are a half-dozen restaurants scattered around the island, all acceptable, none outstanding. If you love Paquetá enough to stay overnight, there's the Hotel Farol (tel. 021/3397-0402; www.hotelfaroldepaqueta.com.br) or the Pousada Paraiso (tel. 021/2438-5073). Though locals swim in most Paquetá beaches, the only ones given a green light by the City of Rio are Praia da Imbuca, Praia de José Bonifacio, and the very pretty Praia da Moreninha. Including the 70-minute ferry ride (each way), allow 4 to 6 hours for the trip.