10 Must See Things in Sao Paulo Brazil

Who I am
Lluis Enric Mayans

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Sao Paulo, Brazil, is one of the most populated cities in all of South America. It is a city of contrasts and you will notice it as soon as you set foot there: very rich neighborhoods contrasted with absolute poverty, on one side the luxurious skyscrapers, on the other the favelas.
It is the financial, commercial and cultural center of all of Brazil and in its neighborhoods you will meet people from all over the world. In fact, over the years, the city was also one of the major destinations of European immigration, especially of the Italian one. In fact, about 50% of the population living here has at least one Italian ancestor!
After these small premises, it's time to find out what the 10 things to see absolutely in Sao Paulo in Brazil.


  1. Avenida Paulista
  2. Botanical Garden of São Paulo
  3. Ibirapuera park
  4. State Pinacoteca
  5. Municipal Market of São Paulo
  6. Liberdade neighborhood
  7. Art Museum of Sao Paulo (MASP)
  8. Metropolitan Cathedral of St. Paul
  9. Cultural and Educational Weathervane
  10. Football Museum
  11. Plan your stay in Sao Paulo, Brazil: flights, hotels and tours
  12. User questions and comments

1 - Paulista Avenue

The Avenida Paulista is one of the most important streets in the city and one of the most characteristic symbols. In addition, this is where the financial center of São Paulo develops. Walking along the huge street, on the sides you will be able to see several locations of some of the most important financial and commercial activities of the city.
Moreover, this is also one perfect area to look for accommodation or an accommodation during your stay: conveniently connected to all areas of the metropolis, full of people at any time, lots of restaurants and clubs, hotels covering all price ranges, shops for shopping.

  • Avenida Paulista cuts through almost all of São Paulo and is the most important street, connected to the rest of the city by buses and metro lines - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free
  • Sao Paulo City Tour: MASP, Paulista and more

2 - Jardim Botânico de São Paulo

The Botanical Garden of Sao Paulo is the perfect place to relax after visiting the city. A real green oasis of 36 hectares, inside the Ipiranga Provincial Park, in the middle of the skyscrapers and concrete of São Paulo.
In the garden you can follow one of the many paths and trails and admire the approximately 380 species of trees, inhabited by different species of birds, including green-billed toucans. Among lakes, beautiful orchids, aquatic plants, avenues of palm trees and much more, you will embark on a real journey to discover the Brazilian forest.
Inside the garden, you can also find the João Barbosa Rodrigues Botanical Museum, where you will learn about all the conservation programs of the natural park and all the studies on plants and animal species.
In addition to the Museum, inside you will find the Institute of Botany, the Linnaeus garden, the Orchid of Doctor Federico Carlos Hoehne and many greenhouses.

  • it is located on Av. Miguel Estéfno, Vila Água Funda district. Metro line 1 and buses number 051, 446, 4491-01, 4742-10, 475R-10 pass near the Jardim Botânico - Get directions
  • Tuesday to Sunday and holidays from 9:00 to 17:00; in summer from 9:00 to 18:00
  • full R $ 10,00 (about € 2,29); students R $ 5,00 (about € 1,14)

3 - Parque Ibirapuera

Parque Ibirapuera is the largest urban park in São Paulo, as well as a reference point for all inhabitants. It was inaugurated in 1954 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the city and covers about two square kilometers.
In the park you can walk and relax and inside you will find a long cycle path and thirteen illuminated fields. It also houses a convention center. But not just relaxation, in this park you can visit some buildings and sites of interest both historical and architectural. In fact, you can visit: the Palazzo dell'Industria, known as the Bienal Pavilion, current seat of the Biennale and the Museum of Contemporary Art of San Paolo; the Palais de Nations, home to the Afro-Brazilian museum; the Grand Marquise, seat of the Museum of Modern Art (MAM); the Obelisk do Ibirapuera, built in 1932 and about 72 meters high; the Palazzo delle Esposizioni and the Palazzo Agricoltura.

  • Avenida Pedro Álvares Cabral, Vila Mariana district; is located in the city center, a short distance from Paulista Avenue, easily accessible by most of the bus lines - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

4 - Pinacoteca do Estado

The Pinacoteca do Estado is one of the most important art museums in Brazil. Moreover, it is the oldest museum in São Paulo: it was founded in 1905 and regularized as a state public museum in 1911. The building that houses it dates back to 1900 and is located in the Jardim de Luz, in the center of the city.
As for the collection, the Pinacoteca houses one of the largest collections of Brazilian art, made up of thousands of works of art ranging from the 9.000th to the th century, covering various eras of Brazilian painting. In the rooms you can admire about works, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs and decorative art objects.
The entrance ticket to the museum also includes the entrance to the beautiful Jardim de Luz, one of the oldest gardens in the city and where the museum is located.

  • Praça da Luz, 2, Luz district. Accessible by metro lines 1 and 4, or by buses 118C-10, 271C-10, 412 - Get directions
  • Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 to 17:30; Thursdays from 10:00 to 22:00; closed on Mondays
  • full R $ 6,00 (approximately € 1,37); reduced R $ 3,00 (about € 0,69); free admission on Thursdays from 18:00 to 22:00; free admission on Saturdays

5 - Mercado Municipal de São Paulo

The Mercado Municipal is located in the heart of São Paulo ed it is one of the meeting places for locals and tourists. It can be considered a real tourist and cultural center, especially for the important historical building in which it is housed, an architectural symbol of the city.
Designed by the engineer Ranzini and inaugurated in 1933, it is full of retail and wholesale shops and you will find mainly foodstuffs, such as fruits, vegetables, cereals, meats and spices.
Take the right time to visit it all and, why not, indulge in some shopping, taking advantage of all the local specialties you will find on sale: the market, in fact, occupies 12.600 square meters, has over 1.500 employees and welcomes about 50.000 every week people.

  • R. Cantareira, 306, historical center, about 4 kilometers from Paulista Avenue. It is connected to many areas of the city: by metro lines 1, 3 and 4; by bus, with numbers 106A-10, 205, 2101-10, 2181-10, 2523-10; by train number 7 and 11 - Get directions
  • open every day from 6: 00 to 18: 00
  • free

6 - Liberdade district

Of all the 96 districts of the city, you should definitely visit the Liberdade district, the Japanese district of Sao Paulo. You must know that here lives the largest community of Japanese outside Japan and the first emigrants arrived in 1902. In recent decades, the district has also opened its doors to the Chinese and Korean communities, giving life to a real Asian Town in the heart of the city.
In this area you will not even feel like you are in Brazil: among Japanese restaurants, Chinese taverns, the Japanese Immigration Museum, the oriental garden and the Buddhist temple, the culture, folklore and gastronomy of Asia take over. If you are here on Sunday, we recommend you take a tour of the market, located in Praça da Liberdade and which lasts from early morning to mid-afternoon and where you can find handicrafts and Asian culinary specialties.

  • it is located south of the historic center, between the districts of Bela Vista, Sè and Cambuci. Take the blue line metro, Liberdade stop. Once you exit the station, you will find yourself directly in Piazza Libertade - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

7 - Museum of Art of San Paolo (MASP)

The São Paulo Art Museum, abbreviated to MASP, is located on Avenida Paulista, in the center, and is one of the most important museums in the city, as well as one of the first Brazilian cultural associations. In addition to housing an incredible collection, it is also one of the main symbols of San Paolo, for the architectural and structural beauty of the building that houses the museum. It was founded in 1949 by the journalist Assis Chateaubriand and by the art journalist Pietro Maria Bardi, who worked there as a curator for 45 years.
But now we come to the collection that you can see: this is considered the most important collection in South America, thanks to the high level and diversity of the works on display, ranging from classical to contemporary art. You can admire works by great Italian and European artists, including Bellini, Mantegna, Botticelli, Raphael, Matisse, Picasso, Dalì and many others. But the real heart and core of the museum is dedicated to the works of Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, with the likes of Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh and Cèzanne.

  • Av. Paulista, 1578. Green Metro L2 Trianon-Masp stop - Get directions
  • open Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 to 20:00; Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10:00 to 19:00; closed on Mondays
  • full ticket R $ 40,00 (approximately € 9,15); student and teacher ticket R $ 20,00 (approximately € 4,60); over60 ticket R $ 20,00 (approximately € 4,60); free admission for children under 11; free admission every Tuesday
  • Sao Paulo City Tour: MASP, Paulista and More

8 - Metropolitan Cathedral of San Paolo

The Metropolitan Cathedral of St. Paul, also known by the name of Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption and St. Paul, is located in the city center and it is the fifth largest Gothic church in the world, as well as being one of the most beautiful in all of Brazil. The works for its construction began in 1589 and ended in 1616. But, in 1745, it became the seat of the archdiocese of San Paolo, who decided to rebuild it in Baroque style. In 1911 it was demolished again, to build on it what we can still visit today. The German architect Hehl designed it in the Gothic style, drawing inspiration from medieval European cathedrals. Many of the mosaics, sculptures and various furnishings were imported directly from Italy. Part of the project is also inspired by the Duomo of Florence.
111 meters long and 92 meters high, the Cathedral consists of 5 naves and it can hold nearly 8.000 people.

  • Praça da Sé, Sé district - Get directions
  • open every day from 9:00 to 17:00
  • free

9 - Catavento Cultural and Educacional

The Catavento Cultural and Educacional is an interactive museum opened in 2009 and one of the most visited museums in São Paulo. The aim is to bring children, teenagers and adults closer to the world of science, with a fun and interactive approach. Located in the Palazzo delle Industrie, it is spread over 4.000 square meters and it is divided into four sections: Universe, Life, Ingenuity and Society. You will find 250 structures on display, 187 of which are owned by the Foundation of the Sao Paulo Museum of Technology. Through these "works" and the interaction, also thanks to the monitors in the rooms, people will be able to learn about different aspects of life and everything around us, such as life in the oceans, the animal world or the theory of evolution of Darwin.

  • Avenida Mercúrio, s / n Parque Dom Pedro II, in the neighborhood of Brás. Metro lines 1, 3 and 1, bus number 96, 2100-10, 2523-10, 702U-10. 908T-10, train line 7 - Get directions
  • from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 to 17:00; closed on Mondays
  • full R $ 10,00 (about € 2,29); reduced R $ 5,00 (about € 1,14); free admission on Tuesdays

10 - Football Museum

Whether you are a football lover or not, if you are in Sao Paulo you should definitely visit the Museo del Calcio, which relives all the glorious past of the Brazilian national team. The Museum is located under the stands of one of the fields that hosted the World Cup, the Estádio do Pacaembu. The love for the national team and for this sport that unites the whole world can be seen already at the entrance, where you will find many life-size posters of the players who have made the history of the national team and who, nowadays , are considered real icons.
During the tour inside the museum, you will find an interactive space dedicated to the World Cup and where you can retrace, through photographers and the front pages of sports newspapers, the history of the national team, with all its ups and downs and the most important competitions in which it took part.

  • is located inside the Pacaembu Stadium, in Praça Charles Miler, in the Pacaembu district of the same name - Get directions
  • Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 to 17:00; closed on Mondays and in case of sporting events
  • full ticket R $ 15,00 (approximately € 3,43); reduced R $ 7,50 (about € 1,72); Tuesday free admission
  • Sao Paulo: 5-hour private soccer tour

Plan your stay in Sao Paulo, Brazil: flights, hotels and tours

Sao Paulo is very different from most Brazilian cities, can be considered a metropolis in all respects. It is an important cultural and economic center and the area most affected by tourism is that of the historic center and the neighborhoods closest to it. Also for accommodation, we advise you to concentrate your search in this area, very well served by means of transport, very lively and where you will meet many tourists, as most of the attractions are also concentrated. As in all big cities there can be dangers, but just be careful and move intelligently: keep bags and backpacks tightly closed, do not show off things of too much value and do not go to suburban neighborhoods, especially in the evening and at night.

  • starting from € 570,00 -
  • Hotel and b & b starting from € 30,00 per room -

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