Lives in Sao Paulo, SP
Since Jul 2012
25-34 year old male
Parks, Bodies of Water, Playgrounds
The highest point of the city is a natural hill to the west, which peeks out of the jungle environment of Park Estadual do Jaraguá. The top of the hill can be reached in one of two ways: an easy self-guided trek of 2km, or by road (driving or cycling). Getting to the summit is well worth it, as you'll be rewarded with priceless views of both the jungle and the city. There are also plenty of bathrooms, picnic spots, and BBQ pitches available, making it a nice spot to linger for a while.
This park is located in the Serra da Cantareira mountain range (which borders the city on its north side), and preserves within its grounds a huge territory of native tropical jungle. The park is divided into four sections ('Nucleos'), which are helpfully labeled to indicate which are best for trekking, bird watching, photography, picnics and more. Nucleo Pedra Grande has the longest trails, one of which ends at a rock summit offering amazing city views. Nucleo Engordador has a waterfall 6-8 meters high, where you can swim. Nucleos Aguas Claras and Cabuçu are less popular, but are still good options for a day of sports or relaxation in authentic jungle surroundings.
Located to the east of the city, where the Tietê river enters Sao Paulo, Parque Ecologico do Tiete is wilder and its attractions more spread out than other parks. This makes it perfect for those looking to escape the crowds, being full of idle places which are good for picnics, reading, and relaxation. If you're feeling active, explore the 5-7km trails that wind through the forest. Cross your fingers and you might even spot a monkey! Other highlights are the lakes, the 12km long bike lane, and on weekends, the crowded soccer fields — when the locals flock to the park to take part in tournaments.
The Central Park equivalent in Sao Paulo, Ibirapuera Park is a good option for the practice of almost any sport, a lazy picnic or just a wander, and its central position makes it easy to get to (a big advantage over the other parks in the city). The main road in the park is shared by walkers, runners, cyclists, rollerbladers and even moms running with their babies, and the banks of the lakes provide a pleasant place for couples or families looking for some peace and quiet. You'll find museums and galleries inside the park, too, easily added on to your outdoor itinerary.
An urban park in the west of the city, Villa Lobos is particularly good for families, thanks to the high quality of its amenities, good security and free parking. It is one of the best parks for sports activities too, with a mini track for mountain biking, tennis courts, and rental kiosks for skates, rollerblades, tricycles, and bikes!
Inspired by the French public places built during the 19th century, and occupying the spot in which the 1822 independence act was supposedly agreed upon, this park is one huge geometrically-shaped garden full of beautiful flowers. A great place for picnics, relaxation, and of course, photographs!
Situated close to the city's corporate business center, this park is particularly popular with local executives and business travelers. Although rather small, the beauty lies in its convenient location, which makes it ideal for those looking for a green and central spot in which to run, cycle or picnic. There's also a great playground here, making it an excellent choice for families, too.
This small residential park is a local neighborhood favorite. Here you'll find a good road for walking or running, and as skaters and rollerbladers are banned, it's the perfect spot for a leisurely family wander. The road also circles a lake, populated with ducks and the like, meaning that feeding the birds is another kid-friendly activity.
This northern urban park is divided into three zones: sport, central and institutional. The sport zone contains a skate park, 8 multi-sport courts and 2 tennis courts, making it very popular with teenagers in particular. The central zone is perhaps the most interesting for visitors, with walking trails through native trees, a bike road, a playground for kids, and the ruins of the old prison which once sat on the grounds. The institutional zone is mostly relevant to locals, featuring two schools and a free internet area.