Cultural Activities to Do in São Paulo: Diversity and Affordable Prices

Just a walk along any street in São Paulo to realize the immensity of cultures that coexist in one place. From the multiple nationalities of the inhabitants to the museums, cinemas, theaters, libraries, concert halls and gastronomic fairs, the metropolis demonstrates its potential for diversity and hospitality, with the greatest cultural and leisure offer in Latin America. It is no wonder that the city is known as the capital of culture, gastronomy and entertainment. There are so many options, that facilitating the choice, HC separated some of the most famous places in São Paulo that, certainly, are deserved a visit:

Cultural Centers

The São Paulo Cultural Center, inaugurated in 1982, has become one of the first multidisciplinary cultural spaces in the country. The project gave rise to a space characterized by the architecture of the meeting, which offers a collection of libraries with a recognized importance in the current scenario, a program which can be enjoyed for free or at popular prices, with theater, dance and music performances, literature, poetry, visual arts exhibitions, film and video projections, workshops, debates and lectures. In addition, the CCSP has a garden that establishes a visual counterpoint to the often chaotic urban sound and rhythm.

                                                                                               Location: Vergueiro Street, 1000 – Paraíso, São Paulo. Contact: 11 3397-4002

The Banco do Brasil Cultural Center, Fiesp Cultural Center and Itaú Cultural are also great examples of spaces dedicated to special programs such as music, dance, theater, art exhibitions, lectures, cinema and courses. All of them with their particularities, but with the common goal of promoting art for a democratic and affordable price. Many of the activities are free!

                                                                                                                             CCBB Location: Álvares Penteado Street, 112 – Centro, São Paulo. Contact: 11 3113-3651


The Museum of Image and Sound, inaugurated in 1970, has a collection of more than 200 thousand items such as photographs, films, videos and posters. In addition to regular exhibitions and film shows, MIS has a diverse cultural program aimed to all audiences, as well as opening space for new artists. In 2014, the museum was the most visited in the State of São Paulo.

                                                                                               Location: Europa Avenue, 158 - Jardim Europa, São Paulo. Contact: 11 2117-4777

The Cultural Catavento museum mixes games and technology to captivate children. Its aim is to raise the interest of young people in issues related to science, the environment and social problems. The space is divided into four environments: Universe, Life, Engineering and Society. In each of them, the visitor has the possibility of interacting with the theme, with electronic games, 3D movies or exhibitions.

                                                                                                                   Location: Civic Square Ulisses Guimarães (Industries Palace). Contact: 11 3315-0051

Theaters and Movies

The Frei Caneca Theater has one of the largest theater stages in Brazil and its infrastructure allows simultaneous shows, and the most varied segments such as comedy, prose, music and dance. The space welcomes the spectators, with a large hall, good bathrooms, comfortable armchairs and wide corridors, where great names of humor circulate hunting targets for their jokes. Children's plays complete the schedule.

                                                                                                           Location: Frei Caneca Street, 596 – Consolação. Contact: 11 3472-2229

The Renault Theater is well known for housing Broadway's famous musicals such as  ‘’Wicked’’ and currently on show, ‘’Les Miserables’’. For being the first sound cinema of Latin America, was reference to other theaters during many years. Its facade, as well as the exterior area of the Art Nouveau auditoriums, were listed as historical patrimony.

                                                                                               Location: Brigadeiro Luís Antônio Avenue, 411 - República. Contact: 11 4003-5588.


The Mário de Andrade Library is the first public of São Paulo. It gathers more than 3 million items, including books, periodicals, multimedia maps, one of the largest collections of art books in the city, a UNO depository library and a vast collection of rare works, considered the second largest public collection in Brazil.

                                                                                                                                          Location: Consolação Street, 94 – Consolação, São Paulo. Contact: 11 3775-0002

It's not a library but it's just as important as one. Livraria Cultura, located in Conjunto Nacional, has more than 60 years in the market and has a collection of more than two million titles, among books, CDs and DVDs for all tastes and ages. Eva Herz Theater is also located in the bookstore itself, in honor of the founder, where meetings, readings, courses and performances are held.

                                                                                               Location: Av. Paulista, 2073 - Consolação, São Paulo. Contact: 11 3179-0000

Gastronomic Fairs

Gastronomy is one of the key pieces in the cultural circle of São Paulo. Suddenly, the gastronomic festivals have invaded the metropolis. They are fairs and festivals that have no end! Only this year, the capital hosts events like churros, strawberry, corn, candy and many other goodies! Not to mention events with vegan foods that bring a schedule full of lectures, workshops and activities.

But the most traditional ‘’gourmet’’ attraction of the city lies in an imposing building in the center, with stained glass windows that bring the coffee history. In the large shed, stalls of fruit and vegetable, meats and fish -- all very fresh and appetizing. The gastronomic space, on the mezzanine floor, has several options to try on the spot: the famous mortadella sandwiches and the cod pastry.                                                                                               Location:  Cantareira Street, 306 – Centro, São Paulo. Contact: 11 3313-3365

Author: Letícia Santini

Editor: Isabelle Caldeira