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São Paulo Excursions

With a population of well over 21 million people, São Paulo is Brazil's largest city. Ultimately there are numerous activities to do and places to see here.

For whatever reason, the city is considered relatively underrated as far as travel is concerned, possibly due to a general lack of familiarity with the many attractions that abound in this vast expanse of high rise buildings and paved streets.

Ipiranga gardens
Ipiranga gardens and Museu Paulista. Credit: Wikimedia
For the smart traveller who wants to have a good time, a local tour guide will help them find the most interesting aspects of São Paulo just eagerly waiting for them. The following is a quick roundup of five of the city’s best.

1. AroundSP São Paulo City Tour

This excursion is a comprehensive tour of São Paulo’s main attractions. It’s especially useful for those who are looking to really explore in detail, with minimal rush and giving maximum attention to each site of visit.

Generally, the tour will feature stops at all the attractions listed on the São Paulo City Tour Intermediate, including:

Jardins: seamlessly combining the rigidity of luxury commerce with the elegance of high society, Jardins is one of the most highly sophisticated and cosmopolitan neighborhoods in São Paulo.

Vila Madalena: this is a one of São Paulo’s main bohemian neighborhoods, complete with the musings of history and modernity. Visitors will also be amused to find Praça do Pôr do Sol (Sunset Square) here, which boasts one of the most beautiful views in the Capital.

2. Tours by Locals Soccer Experience in São Paulo

Did you know that there is a soccer museum in São Paulo?

Being one of the world’s most foremost nations in soccer, Brazil boasts some of the most amazing stories regarding the sport’s history, especially in respect to its own triumphs and feats.

Apart from visiting the museum, this tour also takes visitors to São Paulo Futebol Clube stadium. Here, guests will get a chance speak with a local guide who will help them in understanding soccer history and why it's the Brazilian passion.

The tour generally lasts for about eight hours.

3. Free Walking Tour

For those who prefer a slower, more intimate experience, there is a great walking tour on offer in the city. The best part is, it’s all free (tips based only) and offers tours of historical and cultural sites.

According to the organizers, “We are the first and the official free walking tour in São Paulo, and we want to offer you the best of this city, through a different, fun and amazing way.”

There are two different tours for visitors to explore São Paulo:

Paulista Ave: this is a show of São Paulo’s modernity at its best via the current main avenue of the city.

This particular tour is slated for Thursdays and Sundays and begins at 3:30 p.m. Patrons are expected to meet on time at Paulista Ave X Augusta.

Old Downtown: this tour is an exploration of the historical centers of the city.

The Downtown tour is slated for Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, beginning at at 11:30 a.m. The meeting point is also at República Square.

Importantly, patrons should note that children under 16 years old must be accompanied by parents, or a responsible older than 18 years old.

4. AroundSP Beach Tour of Guaruja

This tour is not quite São Paulo, however visitors to the city tend to take this route as part of their vacation. As such, we’ve included it here. This excursion is actually a costal tour of the coastal city of Guarujá, close to São Paulo and frequented by Paulistanos.

To get there, people take a ferry which is located on Santo Amaro Island. This tour normally ends with a stop at a local restaurant just in time for dinner or desert. Popular menu choices often include a wide selection of seafood.

5. Tours by Locals Ilhabela

Ilhabela is an exceptionally beautiful island located just three hours from São Paulo. In fact, the name Ilhabela literally means "beautiful Island".

Ilhabela sets itself apart in offering modern amenities within the midst of paradise. Visitors will find exotic beaches and waterfalls on one end of the islands while downtown, expect to see restaurants, shops, cafes, and some historical buildings. Along with visiting different beaches and waterfalls, guests will also get a chance to stop by the city center.

The island is located just north of São Paulo and takes about three hours from São Paulo City, crossing the "Serra do Mar" state park within the Atlantic Rainforest. Guests will get to witness panoramic views of the Atlantic from about 1,000 meters above sea level.

On a final note, please bear in mind that traffic is always an issue in São Paulo. Apart from the natural wonders of this great city, private tour guides in São Paulo are often keen to show visitors its world-class restaurants, boutiques, and cultural charms so they will see the best the city has to offer.

It’s also a god idea to check out the city’s buzzing nightlife; remember, São Paulo is a city that never sleeps.
Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas.

 > Category: Excursions   Brazil   

June 26, 2014
A local tour guide will help visitors find the best of São Paulo. Following is a quick roundup of five good excursions. "/>

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