Sun, Sand and Ceará: Exploring Fortaleza, Brazil

Fortaleza is a city of 2 million inhabitants located in Brazil’s Northeast region and capital of the state of Ceará. Fortaleza and the Ceará coastline are a popular tourist destination for Brazilians and, to some extent, Europeans. Few Americans visit Fortaleza, possibly due to the greater popularity of Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Iguaçu Falls and the lack of direct flights. Another reason could be Fortaleza’s … Continue reading Sun, Sand and Ceará: Exploring Fortaleza, Brazil

Serra Negra: A Weekend Escape from São Paulo

Paulistanos (natives of São Paulo) often find the need to escape the concrete megalopolis of 20 million people and enjoy a weekend in a more relaxed and rural setting. Serra Negra is one such popular destination in the interior of the state of São Paulo that offers both laid back charm and bucolic scenery.  Serra Negra is a city of approximately 25,000 residents, located in … Continue reading Serra Negra: A Weekend Escape from São Paulo

Beach and Buggy Adventure Near Fortaleza

Brazil’s northeastern state of Ceará offers some of the country’s most stunning beaches.  While visiting Fortaleza, I took a day trip to explore some of the coastline to the east of the city.  A local friend of mine helped me find a tour company, Enseada, that would take me to the beaches east of Fortaleza on a day trip. I also booked a trip to Jericoacoara … Continue reading Beach and Buggy Adventure Near Fortaleza

Liberdade: A Taste of Tokyo in São Paulo

Liberdade is a traditionally Japanese neighborhood located near the center of São Paulo. It makes for an interesting exploration of Brazil’s diverse population and history of immigration. History Brazil and Japan established diplomatic relations in 1895. A little over a decade later, the first boat of Japanese immigrants, the Kasato Maru, arrived in Brazil with 790 people, many of them farmers escaping hardships in the … Continue reading Liberdade: A Taste of Tokyo in São Paulo

Vila Madalena: A Wander Through One of São Paulo’s Most Creative and Colorful Neighborhoods

Vila Madalena is a popular neighborhood in São Paulo, full of restaurants, bars, shops, galleries and colorful street art. In the 1970s, São Paulo students flocked to the area in search of cheap accommodation, giving it a bohemian character.  While Vila Madalena is now considered a bairro nobre (upper middle class neighborhood), it still retains a lot of its creative charm and is a wonderful … Continue reading Vila Madalena: A Wander Through One of São Paulo’s Most Creative and Colorful Neighborhoods

A Gringo’s Guide to São Paulo’s Vila Mariana

Vila Mariana is the neighborhood of São Paulo where I have lived in over the past few months.  After staying with a friend in Praça Roosevelt, near Praça da República, I decided that I wanted to explore a different neighborhood of São Paulo and ended up staying with Airbnb hosts in Vila Mariana.  Through Facebook friends, I eventually found a room to rent in an … Continue reading A Gringo’s Guide to São Paulo’s Vila Mariana