Sao Paulo has many great museums and a super intense cultural agenda all year round. You might get lucky to see a great concert at Sala São Paulo, which is a beautiful revamped old train terminal that used to be part of Estação da Luz (still active train station). Maybe you get to see a thrilling awarded contemporary ballet (or a classical one) at Theatro Municipal.
If you stay up all night (perhaps dancing) or if you like to wake up really early, an insider tip is to have breakfast at Mercado Municipal – the biggest and most traditional market in town where you will find an extraordinary variety of fruits, Brazilian and international ingredients and delicious snacks such as “pastel” and “sanduíche de mortadela”.
Very Important: The venues mentioned below are all part of the city architectural heritage, located in the old city center (downtown) of which some parts are revitalized and really worth visiting, but some are not. We do not recommend you to explore this area alone (without a local friend or a guide).
Some of the museums, art institutes, galleries, and exhibitions really worth visiting are:
MAM (Modern Art Museum)
One of the greatest collections of contemporary art in Latin America. Located inside Ibirapuera Park.
MCB (Brazilian House Museum)
Amid Faria Lima area, MCB occupies a beautiful neoclassic house built between 1942 and 1945. Dedicated to architecture and design, it presents interesting temporary exhibitions and holds a permanent collection of Brazilian furniture. MCB’s calendar includes musical concerts on Sundays and the restaurant serves delicious Brazilian cuisine buffet.
MASP (Sao Paulo’s Art Museum)
Besides of its very good permanent collection, it features great modernist architectural design by italian-born Brazilian Lina Bo Bardi, in the heart of Avenida Paulista.
TRENDING On your way there stop and have a drink or coffee with a city view at MIRANTE 9 de JULHO – new venue in town uniting architecture, art, food in a recovered city landmark.
Rua Carlos Comenale, s/n – Bela Vista
+55 11 3111-6330
MIS (Museum of Image and Sound)
Showcasing the best of audiovisual productions, including film, cinema and photography, it is located in the heart of Jardim Europa area and hosts leading international exhibitions.
INSTITUTO TOMIE OHTAKE
This private cultural center is named after an important contemporaneous Brazilian artist, Ms. Tomie Ohtake. Its art exhibitions always feature national and international trends, besides references of the past 50 years. The institute also presents art studios, lectures, a great Brazilian buffet restaurant and two shops.
MUSEU DO FUTEBOL
To visit the Museum of Football (soccer) is to learn about the Brazilian history in the 20th century, understanding that our habits, customs and behavior are inseparably linked to the ascension of this sport. Football has helped to create the Brazilian identity and its stars represent our culture as much as the icons of the arts, music, literature and theater.
Brazilian culture and traditions since colonization (from Brazilian Indians to African influence). Located inside Ibirapuera Park.
PINACOTECA DO ESTADO
Beautiful building located next to Estação da Luz, it holds great modern itinerant exhibitions besides a permanent collection. Located at the City Center. Please, consult your concierge.