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Sao Paulo Guide
Tips for First-Time Travellers to Sao Paulo
Using taxis in Sao Paulo
You can take a metered taxi or an Uber from Sao Paulo International Airport (GRU) as soon as your flights to Sao Paulo land. It's recommended to use a ride-sharing app such as Uber, Easy Taxi or 99 Taxi so you can see how much the trip will cost before getting into the car. It will also help you avoid any taxi scams and getting ripped off by ‘fake’ cab drivers.
Avoiding rush hour in Sao Paulo
As soon as your flights to Paulo arrive, one of the first things you'll notice about the city is the gridlocked traffic. To avoid it, you'll want to use the metro system as much as possible. However, you'll want to wait until rush hour is over. The metro is usually uncomfortably crowded and it’s a popular time for pickpockets to strike.
Learn basic Portuguese
Sao Paulo doesn't receive a lot amount of English-speaking tourists. As a result, English isn’t that widely spoken among locals. To get around this, you should learn a few basic Portuguese phrases before boarding your flights to Sao Paulo. It's also a good idea to have a translation app installed on your phone.
Visit museums during the week
If you're buying return flights to Sao Paulo for the whole family, plan your trip to the city's museums and zoological parks for during the week. If you go on weekends, you'll end up waiting in long queues.
Travelling with Children
Sao Paulo is a fantastic city to explore with children of all ages. If you're on the fence about buying an airfare to Sao Paulo for travel with your kids, here are some the best things families can do in the city:
Visit the Science Museum
The Science Museum is one of the top museums in the city. Opening in 2009, it has interactive exhibits that will keep the kids entertained for hours. The most exciting area of the museum for kids is the Chemistry Lab. Children can take part in experiments and learn about chemistry in the process. Tickets to the museum cost $6 BRL ($2.13 AUD) for adults and children pay half price, making the museum an affordable activity for families buying cheap flights to Sao Paulo.
Go to the beach
If you're buying tickets to Sao Paulo, you should consider renting a car. You can select a vehicle when buying your flights to Sao Paulo with Webjet or once you arrive at the airport. While there is plenty to see in the city, there are numerous day trips you can take that are perfect for the whole family. One of the best things to do is drive up to the Santos Coast for the day. You can visit the quiet beach towns of Guaruja and Bertioga, or if you want to go on a longer road trip, you can explore Maresias or Sao Sebastiao.
Visit the Sao Paulo Aquarium
Whether you're buying flights to Sao Paulo or any other city in the world, visits to the aquarium are always a winner when you're travelling with kids. The Sao Paulo Aquarium doesn't disappoint and has a massive collection of marine animals. Entrance to the aquarium is $85 BRL ($30.17 AUD) for adults and $50 BRL ($17.75 AUD) for kids.
Once you've booked your flights to Sao Paulo, the next thing you have to do is find a hotel. The only problem is that Sao Paulo is a large city that's made up of dozens of neighbourhoods and it can be hard deciding where you want to stay if it's your first time buying airfare to Sao Paulo. To make things easier, here are some of the best neighbourhoods for travellers visiting Sao Paulo:
- Vila Madalena: If you're a young traveller searching for cheap flights to Sao Paulo and a trendy district, stay in Vila Madalena. The area is home to some of the city's best bars, art museums and street art. You'll also find an open-air market here, and it's the best place to sample authentic Brazilian cuisine on a budget.
- Itaim Bibi: Itaim Bibi is the perfect place to base yourself if you're looking to soak up Sao Paulo's nightlife. There are nightclubs all over the neighbourhoods as well as delicious restaurants and cafes. The neighbourhood is a 40-minute drive from Sao Paulo International Airport (GRU) or you can take public transportation to reach your hotel.
- Liberdade: Sao Paulo is home to the world's largest Japanese community outside of Japan. If you want to soak up this unique side of Brazilian culture, book a hotel in Liberdade. It's also the best place to stay if you're buying flights to Sao Paulo around Chinese New Year.
- Baixo Augusta: Baixo Augusta is a busy financial district during the day and a trendy after-hours hangout spot by night. You can find plenty of food trucks, bars, cinemas, theatres, restaurants and shops here. It’s a popular choice for business travellers buying return flights to Sao Paulo.