Sao Paulo Tourist Attractions and Sightseeing
(Sao Paulo, Brazil)
The vibrant Brazilian city of Sao Paulo is the world's third largest city and is quickly rising to become the country's cultural centre. On the surface Sao Paulo might be ugly, grey and polluted, but within it you can find a huge selection of tourist attractions if you know where to look. Indisputably a vibrant and energetic place, Sao Paulo can be intimidating, but tourists will find it is well worth taking the effort to get to know it and to visit some of its many attractions.
The local Paulistanos seem at times to be racing to keep up with the changing times, but there are a number of quiet getaways and popular tourist attractions hidden within the heaving city of Sao Paulo. Always much visited is the Instituto Butantan and its collection of snakes, while the huge Jardim Zoológico is actually the largest zoo in the whole of Brazil
. The fantastic Parque do Ibirapuera is a must-see attraction within the heart of the city, and demonstrates the locals' vibrancy and energy for the arts and outdoor pursuits
Parque do Ibirapuera (Ibirapuera Park)
Address: Avenida Pedro Alvares Cabral, Sao Paulo, Brazil, BR
Tel: +55 011 574 517 77
No trip to Sao Paulo is complete without a visit to the important Parque do Ibirapuera, which is home to the Japanese Pavilion, a planetarium, a sports arena and an array of museums and other attractions. More than 100 bird species live within the park and visitors can enjoy aquariums, lakes and much seasonal colour. The Parque do Ibirapuera was inaugurated in 1954, as part of the city's 400 year anniversary celebrations, and has become one of the city's best parks, being used as an open-air library each Sunday, where visitors come to read in the shade beneath one of many mature trees. A number of pleasant walks can be taken around the park, which is dotted with ponds and shady areas.
Open hours: daily - 06:00 to 22:00
Instituto Butantan (Butantan Institute)
Address: Avenida Vital Brazil 1500, Butunta, Sao Paulo, Brazil, BR
Tel: +55 011 372 672 22
One of the city's most notable attractions is home to an incredible venom farm, where snakes poison is used to make antidotes to spider and snake bites. As well as the serpentarium (snake pit), the monkey house is the other best loved part of the zoo. Highly suitable for all the family, the Instituto Butantan is close to the campus of the city's university.
Open hours: Wednesday to Sunday - 09:00 to 16:30
Admission: charge, free for students, children under seven and seniors
Jardim Botánico (Botanical Gardens)
Address: Cursino, Sao Paulo, Brazil, BR
Tel: +55 011 507 363 00
At one end of the Parque do Estado lays the landscaped botanical garden better known as the Jardim Botánico. These glorious botanical gardens are located within the southern side of the city and dotted with charming ponds, an orchidarium and herbavarium, and lined with Brazil wood trees and picturesque palms. The Jardim Botánico dates back as far as 1917 and offers endless seasonal colour, all through the year.
Open hours: daily
Jardim Zoológico (Zoological Gardens)
Address: Parque do Estado, Cursino, Sao Paulo, Brazil, BR
Tel: +55 011 507 308 11
Brazil's biggest zoo is situated in the beautiful Parque do Estado and provides shelter for more than 3,000 animal species within its predominantly rainforest interior. The zoo is one of the city's best loved attractions and is spread out over a massive area. Opened in 1958, the Jardim Zoológico operates an admirable conservation program and is currently home to more than 3,000 animals, including rather rare white rhinos and lion marmosets. Each year, the Sao Paulo Zoo attracts in excess of 1.5 million visitors.
Open hours: daily