A good starting point for a visit to São Paulo is the Praça de Sé – the historic center of the city. It is a nice place surrounded by palms, often crowded and it has seen mighty demonstrations (like for free elections in 1984) in the past. You can get here easily by metro, using the station naturally called Sé.
Parque do Ibirapuera
If you need to relax a bit, São Paulos equivalent to the Central Park, the Parque do Ibirapuera might be the place for you. It is a 160 hectare park with ponds, woods and lawns where you can relax, do some sports or look out for art.
Museums in São Paulo
There a quite some museums in São Paulo (like the Museu da Imagem e do Som, MIS; or the Museu da Casa brasileira), but because of limited time I only had the possibility to visit two of them: The Museu de Arte de São Paulo (MASP) and the Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo (MAM). At least the MASP has to be put on your shortlist.
Entering São Paulo
São Paulo is one of the biggest cities in Brazil und going by car into the town is quite an adventure. I wouldn’t say that traffic is as mad as in Marseille, but it is definitivly close to it. Especially the motorways around the city are special: Most times four lanes going parallel, then two surprisingly change their direction or cross the other two via a bridge. A miracle, if you arrive without getting lost at least once.
Driving through São Paulo
“Although São Paulo is definitely a city in which cars rule,
you’ll have to possess vast amounts of patience
(and a certain degree of insanity)
to consider renting a car here.”
– Michael Sommers
Aeroporto Internacional de São Paulo (GRU)
The airport of São Paulo (called Guarulhos) is located 26 km afar from the city center. It is a big airport with long distances to walk and nice restaurants. The airport is connected to the city by busses running from the lower level of the airport. Like on any airport in South America you’ll have to wait some time for immigration control.
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