What Are the Top Places to Visit in Sao Paulo?
One of the most beautiful countries in the world, finding things to do in Sao Paulo will not be an issue after checking out this guide.
So you’re looking for the best things to do in Sao Paulo?
There’s an abundance of options. The Brazilian capital is the wealthiest and most populous city in the country. It’s also the biggest city in the West and South hemisphere and the 16th largest in the world.
You may need two or more visits to see all the major attractions, depending on the length of the visit and how you plan to get around.
It’s a huge city with many points of interest in different parts of town. So it’s a good idea to start making a plan of where to go and how.
Here are our top 9 things to do in Sao Paulo.
1. Catedral da Se
This is in the very center of Sao Paolo and a good place to start checking off your list of things to do in Sao Paulo. People consider the front of the building the central point of the city.
This cathedral is one of the top five biggest neo-Gothic religious buildings in the world. You can take guided tours in the church to learn about its history and take in the beautiful architecture.
The tours also explore the subterranean crypt under the altar. This is where the Tropic line of Capricorn crosses the cathedral. Tibrica, the indigenous leader, is buried in the crypt.
2. Parque Villa Lobos
While it’s not the biggest park in the city, it’s big and perhaps the greenest one. It’s a great place to enjoy a calmer vibe with abundant trees and other plants.
The main hotspot is the “Musical island.” This open-air stage sits in a pit with concrete bleachers surrounding it on every side. If you go here on the weekend, you may catch a performance by a local band or singer-songwriter.
Unlike many other interesting things to do in Sao Paulo, you won’t have to fight the crowds here. Even during the weekends.
One of the best ways to enjoy this park is to rent a bicycle and explore it at your own pace.
3. Mercado Municipal
Sao Paolo’s municipal market is among the most popular tourist attractions in central Sao Paolo, and for good reason. 135600 square foot full of stands and merchants.
The market draws merchants from all over town. You’ll find all sorts of items sold here. The food, in particular, is very popular. Fruit, fish, spices, you’ll find an amazing selection of food here.
The most famous food tourists come for is the signature bologna sandwich. Trying this is one of the essential tourist things to do in Sao Paulo.
It can get crowded, and the city itself can be chaotic, so a good transport service will make your experience more enjoyable.
The building itself was designed in 1985 and makes a noteworthy historical landmark. Its original purpose was to host the Lyceum of Arts and Crafts. This is where craftsmen and technicians learned their craft.
It’s worth a visit just for the history and the architecture.
The real point of interest, however, is the ‘Pinacoteca do Estado’ museum. This is the first and oldest art museum in the city.
It’s an interesting structure with a big, two-story atrium right in the center of the museum. The natural light this provides makes the experience of exploring the art much more impressive.
5. Beco do Batman
The Batman Alleyway, or Beco do Batman, is another must-see tourist attraction.
This narrow alleyway found in Vila Madalena draws its peculiar name from some of the first art drawn on its walls. Batman appeared here in a graffiti rendition long before graffiti became a trendy thing.
It’s located in the artsiest neighborhood of the city. Despite its cramped width, many thousands of tourists pass through it each year. It’s a good idea to visit it early in the day to avoid having to deal with the crowd.
This decorated alleyway was among the first open-air museums in Latin America dedicated to graffiti.
It’s best to enjoy the art-covered walls on foot so you can appreciate the art and take pictures. However, getting a personal ride to the site is your best option.
The Museo de Arte de Sao Paulo, or MASP for short, is among the Southern Hemisphere’s most important museums.
This art museum displays a rich collection of a whopping 8,000 or so pieces of art. Between works by famous worldwide legends like Van Gogh and Picasso, you’ll find Brazilian classics like Portinari and Anita Malfatti.
The building itself is an interesting site to behold. A huge concrete structure, held up by four huge, red pillars. It’s suspended design leaves a 7-4 meter free zone where you can stand under the building.
Visit their website for more information.
7. Theatro Municipal
If you’ve seen a postcard from Sao Paolo, chances are high that you’ve seen this building. It’s one of the most popular motifs.
The municipal theatre of Sao Paolo was built in 1903, modeled after the Paris Opera House.
While it’s gone through many renovations and modernizations, it hasn’t lost any of its early 20th-century style and glamor.
You have two choices for ways to enjoy this site. You can watch a performance by a dance school or music school. Or you can visit when there’s no performance, and explore the building with other tourists.
Make sure to snap some pictures, and send a postcard or two while you’re there. A visit to the municipal theatre is one of the quintessential things to do in Sao Paulo.
8. Feira da Liberdade
This unique neighborhood is an interesting place to visit. Most of all on the weekends.
The weekend fair is a fascinating experience and a good place to buy a variety of things. Japanese handicrafts, in particular, draw a lot of visitors.
There’s a plethora of market stands selling Asian goods. From souvenir peddlers to food stands. The smell of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean food is sure to tickle your appetite.
On the typical weekend day, the whole fair is crammed full of visitors by mid-morning. Locals from the neighborhood and the rest of the city and tourists from all over the world crowd the area.
It’s best to get there either before the crowd, or toward the end of the fair when most people have left.
The Feira da Liberdade is worth a visit on other days of the week as well.
9. Avenida Paulista
This big avenue is one of the key cultural and financial centers of the city. Every day, many thousands of visitors pass through.
This is where locals and tourists alike flock to enjoy shopping and recreation. You’ll find a plethora of restaurants, movie theaters, and big bookstores.
This is also where you’ll find the most important museum of the city, the aforementioned MASP.
If you want to enjoy the full experience of Avenida Paulista, set aside a few hours at least.
Final Thoughts on Things to Do in Sao Paulo
This vast city offers a lot to see and do. Making the most of the visit without ruining the trip with unnecessary stress can be a challenge.
The place is just so big.
If you want to visit all these things on a short trip to Sao Paolo, good transport service is your friend.
AssistAnt offers you this and much more.
Contact us here for more information.