Kia ora Sao Paulo!

Trip Start Jun 16, 2008
Trip End Sep 18, 2008

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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Today we had to fit in 2 days sightseeing into 1...tough call. While Taj was getting ready, Olivia was watching breakfast tv. One children´s show had a tv presenter who was about 5 years old! Olivia was hypnotised by this small child presenting the show by herself, taking phone calls from other children. Crazy!

We made our way down to Bar Brahma again for breakfast. We each ordered a different breakfast combo and looked forward to it.

There was hot chocolate included in the combo which turned out to be a cup of thick melted chocolate...we loved it! Great way to start the day.  Taj´s combo came with some sweet pastries whilst Olivia´s had bread and butter plus a plate of small dough balls which were cheesy.

First stop was the information centre where we collected a map of the city.  We then walked down to the Municipal Theatre of Sao Paulo which is an impressive building in the downtown area.

We caught the subway to Praça de Sé which is the main square and centre of Sao Paulo.We visited the Cathedral which is the largest church in Sao Paulo.

From there, it was a short walk to Pátio do Colégio which marks the site where the city was founded in 1554 by the celebration of a mass of the Jesuit school.

We noticed Sao Paulo was a lot cooler than Puerto Iguazu. Brrr.

We then made our way to the Museum of Portuguese Language. You may think it´s weird that non-Portuguese speakers like us would want to visit this but it had great reviews AND is the only language museum in the world!

Luckily there was an English speaking guide for the first section about Machado do Assis, a famous Brazilian writer who died in 1908.  He was a black writer but funnily enough, the more famous he became while he was alive, the more caucasian he looked in paintings! We were told by the guide that at the time, people didn´t believe a black person could write this way.

The second level of the museum consisted of a large multi-media wall which showed images of Brazilian society and how the language has evolved and changed over time. There were other displays showing the different accents throughout Brazil. 

After the museum, we made our way to Liberdade area which is the japanese area as we fancied some sushi! We luckily found a restaurant which was still open and sat down for some sushi and udon soup.

Soon we were back at the hotel for a short rest before a night out with Luis and Marina.

We were collected later that evening by Luis and Marina and we made our way to Kia Ora, a bar owned by the same kiwi guy as All Black.  The bar was really cool with all sorts of kiwi memorabilia including a poster of the All Blacks which had been infused with their blood. Olivia says gross.

After trying the Wallaby beer, it confirmed what we originally thought...yuck! Time for some Brazilian beer, Bohemia.  A band came on at 11pm and played loads of cover songs in English. The Brazilian crowd knew more of the words in English than we did!  There was also an English stag group there who had flown to Brazil for 4 days!!

To make serving of drinks quicker, when you enter the bar you give your name and you are given a plastic card with a number. You then use this all night when you order drinks or food. System works really well. When you leave, you hand over the card and pay the bill. Security also then confirms the card has been paid before you walk out the door. Not sure what they would do if you don´t have enough money!!

We had a great time at the bar!

Soon it was time to go and say goodbye to Luis and Marina. Very sad. It was great to catch up with them and we look forward to their upcoming trip to New Zealand (hint hint).

By the time we got back to the hotel, we felt a little hungry so Taj braved the streets of Sao Paulo to get some McDonalds.  After a big feed, it was time for bed.
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