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Top Five Reasons To Visit São Paulo

Updated on March 10, 2010

São Paulo, Brazil

Sao Paulo State's Flag - © Eduardo Deboni
Sao Paulo State's Flag - © Eduardo Deboni

There are many reasons to visit São Paulo, Brazil. The main one is to do business, as this is one of global cities and the most important business center in Latin America. But São Paulo has much more to offer to its tourists.

Culture and Leisure

São Paulo is a center of urban tourism and therefore breathes culture. There are over 100 museums open to visitors, with all sort of exhibitions. And with more than 150 theaters there are always many choices any day of the week: drama, musical, comedy, concerts, etc.


The São Paulo City has all sort of cuisine. From haute cuisine to street food, are more than 52 countries represented in thousands of restaurants.

If you like wine, you deserve a dinner at Terraço Itália that offers one of the most comprehensive wine lists in the town and also allows a fantastic 360° view of the city. The restaurant is in the top of Edifício Itália (Italy Building), the second tallest building of São Paulo. A rooftop observation deck is open for tourists.

Did you know that São Paulo second only to New York in city that consumes more pizza in the whole world? Therefore, when visiting São Paulo be sure to aks for your favorite pizza.

And be sure to also eat the "sanduíche de mortadela" and the "pastel de bacalhau" in the Mercado Municipal. And since you will be there at Mercadão, go through the fruit stands to be surprised and know a few flavors that you will not find elsewhere in the world.


With 59 shopping streets and more than 45 shopping malls, it is hard not go shopping in São Paulo. From luxury to popular, from the Oscar Freire to 25 de Março, São Paulo has options for all tastes and pockets.


The luxury segment moves around US$ 4 billion each year only in São Paulo. And this segment has some fixed addresses in the largest city in Latin America.

In the Oscar Freire Street, one of the top ten luxury streets in the world1, are the main brazilian and international brand shops. Luxury brands and boutiques are also in the Shopping Iguatemi and the Daslu shop, known as the "fashion designers mecca" of Brazil.


If money is short, in São Paulo you will also find popular shopping places. But prepare yourself to enter the crowd, because local consumers and wholesalers from all over Brazil fill these locations. Only in the 25 de Março Street, symbol of popular shopping in São Paulo, are more than 500 thousand people per day.

On 25 de Março they sell everything from textile to electronic gadgets. In Bom Retiro and in Brás there is strong concentration of clothing manufacturers. On some streets you find the best closeouts and liquidations of Brazil. And there are still places specialized in furniture and decoration and also construction and building material shops with popular prices.


If the bustling nightlife is your thing, São Paulo can serve you very well. Do you want to watch a music show? Choose one of several concert halls. Want cold beer and chat with friends? Choose one of the thousands of bars. Want to dance? Choose your music type, because there are many places to dance.

The main points of agitation in São Paulo are in Vila Madalena and Vila Olimpia. The 13 de Maio Street and more recently the Augusta Street also are featured in the nightlife of the city.

Moreover, it has become common end the night in one of the many 24 hours bakeries in town.

Other People's Cultures

Want to know everything about Japan without leaving São Paulo? This is possible, after all, São Paulo is a city of immigrants, made up of people from all over Brazil and the world.

In Liberdade, the largest japanese community outside Japan, you dive in Orient's culture. Besides typical restaurants of japanese food, shops and bookstores with japanese items and unique architecture, it is common to find people speaking japanese and facades written in japanese characters. On weekends there is a craft fair in the Praça da Liberdade.

São Paulo has many other stronghold of immigrants, like the italians in Mooca. There is located the Memorial do Imigrante (Memorial of the Immigrant) that preserves the history of the city with a large collection that depicts the immigration across the state of São Paulo.

It is also interesting to visit the Centro de Tradições Nordestinas (Northeastern Traditions Center), to know the culture of the people of Brazil Northesatern, that live in large numbers in the city.

References and credits


  1. The most prestigious avenues in the World, according to Excellence Mystery Shopping international consultancy.
  • São Paulo Turismo (
  • Cidade de São Paulo (
  • Myself (I currently live at São Paulo City)


  • Eduardo Deboni's "São Paulo's flag" image licensed by CC Attribution 2.0 Generic (


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    • profile image

      James T 7 years ago

      Great Post!

      Do not agree with the comments above. Now in SP it’s time to celebrate the ever-progressing gastronomy of the Brazilian city. Behold Millesime Sao Paulo, a culinary conference and fair taking place March 22nd-24th. The three days are sure wet the appetites of any fine cuisine enthusiasts



    • profile image

      Calvin from Thailand 7 years ago

      Sao Paolo is the selected place to be hosted of

      Miss Universe 2011 in September 2011 ^0^

    • profile image

      Neil 7 years ago

      People like Mr Nice are typical foreigners who never left their country, read outdated news online and hear outdated news on major news channels.

      Sao Paulo-SP, is a great city where I can enjoy without a personal body guard. Most of my friends who live and work there are Brazilian naturalized Irish immigrants.

    • mochileiro profile image

      mochileiro 8 years ago from Brazil

      @Mr Nice

      Things aren't that way! Actually there is violence in São Paulo as there is in any other metropolis out there.

      Although there is some sort of violence in all parts of Brazil, it generally concentrates on certain areas of cities. The degree of caution needed in these areas is similar to what you have in some areas of Chicago, for example. Just as my hosts (that live at South Side) warned me about some places, specially at night, when I've been in Chicago 3 years ago, someone in São Paulo (maybe your hotel receptionist) can do the same for you.

      I live in São Paulo today and I've lived in Rio de Janeiro. For me the Rio is a lot more violent than São Paulo. However, only in the last carnival, Rio has received more than 730 thousands tourists and, with the exception of Beyoncé, Madonna and other celebrities, they were not with personal body guard.

    • Mr Nice profile image

      Mr Nice 8 years ago from North America

      Traveling inside São Paulo, Brazil you will also need a personal body guard. Good luck