Whenever I say I’m from Brazil, people assume that either I came from Rio or São Paulo (the only cities that most people remember), or that I’m lying, because I’m as pale as a white sheet of paper. Brazil is a huge (HUUUUUUUUUGE) country and its people have really mixed ancestry, so I always take my time to explain many of this details whenever I meet someone (who seems interested in knowing). The south of Brazil was mostly colonized by germans, italians and polish people, which explains why the second biggest Oktoberfest is located in Brazil.
I was born and raised in the south, in Curitiba, capital of Paraná and I’m always excited to introduce people to my hometown so I thought it would be nice to illustrate some of the best things about it. If you are planning a trip to Brazil, let me show you why Curitiba is a good city to visit.
Every Sunday, there is a market place happening in the historic center, Largo da Ordem. Think hundreds of booths of vendors from different craft areas. Lots of artesanal wood carving, seamstress, souvenir shops, and a lot of street food.
Besides the local artisans you can also take a look in the shops and galleries of the area. I really recommend the gallery Um Lugar ao Sol (a place under the sun), which is a very traditional gallery that holds dozens of local artists’ works. I’ve actually used to go to this gallery almost every Sunday when I was a kid. Along with the market, there is also a old car exhibition.
The architecture around the market is also beautiful. Colorful historic buildings that are very inspiring.
The Oscar Niemayer Museum (also known as Mon, or Eye Museum) is one of the most famous museums in the south of Brazil and always has great exhibitions. It was designed by the Oscar Niemayer, opened in 2002 and since then it has became a symbol of the city. They have great curators, and usually host the best local and international artists shows. Besides the art exhibits, there is a great cafe in the entrance of the museum. Great service, delicious food and coffee, translated menus, and stunning view of the backyard park. Also, the grass area behind the museum is known as the dog park, and if you are a dog lover, it is a great place to hangout.
Curitiba is known to be the Green Capital of Brazil, not only because of it’s worldly famous recycling program and sustainability, but also because of it’s parks. Whenever the weather is good and sunny, you can alway find something to do outside. I really recommend the German Woods (Bosque do Alemão) for a nice hike and a stunning view of the city. Remember to use mosquito repellent.
The Barigui Park is a good option for those who want to go for a run in Curitiba. It has a beautiful lake, where lots of animals live peacefully, including capivaras, swans, ducks, and an alligator ( I am not kidding ).
The illustrated deliciousness are my favorite food in Brazil. In general, Brazil has the best food you will ever eat, so I will casually leave this nice buzzfeed article that explain some of it.
Curitiba has really nice cafes, but my favorite is the charming Caramelodrama! Chef Carolina Garofani, who also owns the place, offers amazing dessert options ( my favorite the the Boscolana pie), the best cafe in town, and great salty food too.
Hope you liked this illustrated tour of my hometown!!