My first sample of Sampa, I was tired but it was so tasty...

Sao Paulo Travel Blog

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Coffee at the second coffee shop. I even love the little saucer the cup came on.

My text messages continued to my friend this morning. I had no access to the net and was feeling a little disconnected. My how our world has changed in recent years.

To: Luiz
Sent: 07:36:27 02-01-2012
Bom dia!
Are you awake yet? Would you like to be a hero? Come and rescue me. I made it to SP, the hostel won’t open for another 2.5 hours and I'm sitting in a "cafe" up the road and around the corner where pigeons are dining at the next table. The coffee is hot and sweet though. Come and get me my cavaleiro! Keep wishing me luck, looks like I'm going to need it. Kiss

To: Luiz
Sent: 08:37:34 02-01-2012
Have found an internet cafe that opens in 30 mins. I'm in another coffee house, the coffee is hotter and sweeter and there are no pigeons.

Catedral da Sé. The first cathedral Marcel took me to.
.. I think I'm moving up in the world. :) Just heard your Nando Reis song on my iPod...

To: Luiz
Sent: 09:11:14 02-01-2012
Yeah, I'm back... I asked the girl in the internet place if I could use the internet. No. That was the reply and there was no reason. Just "No". Really?! Come on! I'm too tired for this rubbish. Are you having fun yet Luiz? I sure am. What an adventure... Where's my cavaleiho? You surfing yet? I hope one of us is having fun. :) Ok, 50 mins to kill till the hostel opens. More coffee I think... Oh, I forgot to mention walking past Casa Sao Luiz on my way here. You are everywhere. I took a photo of your building the other day. Nice shot too if I do say so myself... Till the next update. Beijo

To: Luiz
Sent: 10:29:31 02-01-2012
Do you want to know? .

Catedral da Sé. The ceiling was amazing.
.. I made it! I'm lying in bed about to go to sleep. I'm guest no 1 of 2012, in room no 1 and the hostel is no 1 on the map. :) I'm here all alone for now so should get a good sleep. Are you coming to SP do you know yet? I have net access... I'm off and running. Wow, who's a popular girl? 15 new emails and you're not online. Have fun surfing. :) No doubt you'll hear from me again later. Beijos.

That was my last text message to Luiz, we connected up online sometime later that night - his work sent him to somewhere in Rio, so we didn't get to meet this week. I fell asleep after my last txt message, only to be woken up by my contact in Sao Paulo, Marcel. He sent me a text to see if I had arrived and if I still wanted to meet up with him.

Catedral da Sé. Looking towards the altar
Of course I did, so we arranged to meet around 1pm after he had his car looked at and after I had a nap to recharge my batteries. 

Marcel came to meet me at my hostel and together we walked to the subway station and into 'town' as I call it. Of course Sao Paulo is all 'town', but Marcel took  me to the historic centre of downtown. There we saw so much. We started with the Praça da Sé and surrounds. First stop was the Catedral da Sé with its gorgeous dome. We gaped in awe at the ceilings, stained glass windows and artwork in this big church. Then we wondered to the Páteo do Colégio, that stands on the exact spot where São Paulo was founded in 1554 by Jesuit brothers José de Anchieta and Manoel da Nóbregra.

Catedral da Sé. The artwork was amazing too.
I learnt later that the building that stands there now is a 1950's replica of the monastery that once stood there and that inside is a collection of original relics from the city's first days, but the theme for our day was that nothing was open, so I didn't find this out today, I read about it and now have something to do when I go back to São Paulo.

Our next pit stop was the Banespa building. This is the place to go for one of Sampa's best panoramic views. This skyscraper was built in 1939 and was an old bank building. While you wait your turn to get to the top and the gorgeous views, you stand in line in the lobby where there is a stunning chandelier hanging from the ceiling, a long painting by a local Paulistano artist and the safe that once housed the treasures of years gone by.

Páteo do Colégio. This missionary lies on the spot where Sao Paulo was founded in 1554. This building is a replica of the original and I didn't go inside this time, but it give me something to do next time.
It's a slow process waiting for the elevator to the top as it only takes 10 people at a time, and there is limited room in the waiting area at the top of the building. Once it's your turn to take the lift, you must change lifts before riding to the 33rd level from where you need to walk two sets of stairs to just below the observation level. From here it's a short trip up a spiral staircase to the magnificent views of this bustling city. We came on a lovely day and the sky was pretty, the sun shining and white clouds dotted the sky. Not that I was really looking up, the direction of my eyes was out or down. There was so much to look at I didn't know where to start. Unfortunately, there is a five minute time limit on the observation deck and then it's time to leave. I think if I go back I'll arrive as soon as the building opens in the morning, and I hope not as many people waiting, and possibly a little longer to enjoy the view.
Town hall, or as they call it here in Brazil - The Prefeitura (city hall).
I don't know, but it's worth a try.

Marcel and I were about to chew each other's arms of in hunger so from here we walked to the Mercado Muncipal where Marcel said we could get a famous sandwich made of some meat or other, I forget because the Market was closed (of course) so we had to go in search of food elsewhere. The group of American student we met at the top of Banespa has followed us in hopes of a sandwich and from here we split into two groups. One group, not mine were willing to try food from one of the street shops near the market, even Marcel said he wouldn't eat from one of those. They may be housed in the buildings, but he said they are still unhygienic. So Marcel, and two of the American girls and I headed off.

We ended up at a nice restaurant that served nice food for all of us, one vegetarian, one who is intolerant to wheat and two who will eat anything (Marcel and me).

 

The lovely Marcel paid for our lunch and just asked that we buy him a beer at some stage as payment. We are still to go out for our beer, but I'll be back in São Paulo so I'll take him out for a good night one night.

After lunch we caught the subway to Avenida Paulista where we went in search of MASP - Museu de Arte de São Paulo, but not to disrupt the theme of the day, it was closed too. We walked along Avenida Paulista for a little while looking at the sights, then we hopped back on the subway to go home. 

Marcel had parked his car at my hostel so he walked me back home. That was pretty much it for me for the day. I needed some dinner so bought a five minute noodle pack from the reception, ate my dinner and crashed out.

There was only one other guest in the hostel for the night, they had only reopened that morning after having a break over Christmas and the New Year. So I had the room to myself which was a bonus. 

I can't thank Marcel enough for showing me around today. I really enjoyed my day, it was just a shame everything was still closed from the holiday. It was a Monday though and I think some of the places are normally closed on Mondays. But I have things to go back to now. 

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Coffee at the second coffee shop. …
Coffee at the second coffee shop.…
Catedral da Sé. The first cathedr…
Catedral da Sé. The first cathed…
Catedral da Sé. The ceiling was a…
Catedral da Sé. The ceiling was …
Catedral da Sé. Looking towards t…
Catedral da Sé. Looking towards …
Catedral da Sé. The artwork was a…
Catedral da Sé. The artwork was …
Páteo do Colégio. This missionar…
Páteo do Colégio. This missiona…
Town hall, or as they call it here…
Town hall, or as they call it her…
The door to the missionary that st…
The door to the missionary that s…
Looking back across the plaza from…
Looking back across the plaza fro…
Marcel under the bell in the plaza…
Marcel under the bell in the plaz…
That red sign indicates the amount…
That red sign indicates the amoun…
Walking the streets of São Paulo.
Walking the streets of São Paulo.
The three flags are from L - R, th…
The three flags are from L - R, t…
Bovespa is Latin Americas largest…
Bovespa is Latin America's larges…
The beautiful building of the Banc…
The beautiful building of the Ban…
Inside the lobby of the Banespa bu…
Inside the lobby of the Banespa b…
Banespa - The building was complet…
Banespa - The building was comple…
Marcels shirt confused me every t…
Marcel's shirt confused me every …
The Banespa was an old bank buildi…
The Banespa was an old bank build…
The magnificent chandelier in the …
The magnificent chandelier in the…
Some photos of how São Paulo once…
Some photos of how São Paulo onc…
Banespa - those stairs are the fin…
Banespa - those stairs are the fi…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building.
The view from the Banespa Building.
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building.
The view from the Banespa Building.
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
We tried to get a shot of the two …
We tried to get a shot of the two…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
The view from the Banespa Building…
The view from the Banespa Buildin…
At the top of Banespa, this is the…
At the top of Banespa, this is th…
Banespa - The dizzying staircase t…
Banespa - The dizzying staircase …
Banco de São Paulo
Banco de São Paulo
Banco de São Paulo
Banco de São Paulo
Im not sure what building this do…
I'm not sure what building this d…
Some of the Americans we met durin…
Some of the Americans we met duri…
Following the pied piper (Marcel) …
Following the pied piper (Marcel)…
Thats the pied piper in the green…
That's the pied piper in the gree…
Marcel with the Mercado Muncipal i…
Marcel with the Mercado Muncipal …
In São Paulo this is how the garb…
In São Paulo this is how the gar…
Were nearly there. The Mercado Mu…
We're nearly there. The Mercado M…
Why is Marcel scrathcing his head?…
Why is Marcel scrathcing his head…
Oh look, theres the licorice also…
Oh look, there's the licorice als…
25 de Março is the street to get …
25 de Março is the street to get…
Back on the streets of São Paulo …
Back on the streets of São Paulo…
A green patch amongst all the buil…
A green patch amongst all the bui…
Marcel, Sheila and Courtney. We me…
Marcel, Sheila and Courtney. We m…
The hallway of the restaurant wher…
The hallway of the restaurant whe…
Marcel, Courtney and Sheila
Marcel, Courtney and Sheila
Banespa Building - we were at the …
Banespa Building - we were at the…
The streets of São Paulo
The streets of São Paulo
That building with the red on the …
That building with the red on the…
Im not sure of the name of this b…
I'm not sure of the name of this …
Inside this building is a big map …
Inside this building is a big map…
This was one of the pieces which I…
This was one of the pieces which …
I liked this one, its like a Fabe…
I liked this one, it's like a Fab…
Marcel was telling us how they mak…
Marcel was telling us how they ma…
Looking across the Viaduto de Chá…
Looking across the Viaduto de Ch…
Theatro Municipal - I didnt have …
Theatro Municipal - I didn't have…
Yet more streets of São Paulo. We…
Yet more streets of São Paulo. W…
Happy Birthday to the Mosteiro Sã…
Happy Birthday to the Mosteiro S…
This was my one illicit photo insi…
This was my one illicit photo ins…
Some of the stunning Christmas dec…
Some of the stunning Christmas de…
This ones for Bev. One of the Ame…
This one's for Bev. One of the Am…
I dont know what building this wa…
I don't know what building this w…
The entrance to Museu de Arte de S…
The entrance to Museu de Arte de …
One of the banks dressed up for Ch…
One of the banks dressed up for C…
A lua. The moon. Hanging in the pr…
A lua. The moon. Hanging in the p…
One of the original coffee plantat…
One of the original coffee planta…
On the left in this photo is the o…
On the left in this photo is the …
An old view of São Paulo
An old view of São Paulo
Keys in the side-walk outside a ke…
Keys in the side-walk outside a k…
Sao Paulo
photo by: Eric