*PART 1 OF A 2 PART STORY… HEAD HERE FOR THE FIRST BIT*
We rushed SESC to cram everything else in we had left to see, our next stop being Beco do Batman, which is a famous alley filled with loads of incredible street art (but packed with crazy tourists). The area was amazing too, a really great place for young people. We slipped into one little place that looked kind of like a place to buy furniture and groovy things but also a place to tailor and design these things. I’m not entirely sure but it was picture-perfect.
Dodging Instagram girls getting that duck face selfie in front of the artwork, we walked through Beco do Batman after our brief pitstop at design heaven, stopping briefly at little stalls which sold local dairy products (mainly cheese). The colourful, vibrant and dynamic walls suited the neighbourhood, which seemed to be seething with life. Toward the far end of the alley, and just a bit more of a walk away, there was a great staircase, ornamented with colourful hand-painted tiles which we walked up to get to our next destination; Benedito Calixto Market. I couldn’t photograph the entire staircase unfortunately as a massive family was hogging up the entire thing #rude
Sorry, another photoshoot… I liked this wall and there were no tourists around me so I went for it.
The Benedito Calixto market, only open on a Saturday and playing live music from 2:30pm, is a lively market filled with antiques, fashion and other miscellaneous items. A food market is at the centre, serving up a variety of Brazilian street food like mortadella sandwiches, coxinhas, and a lot of Bahian food…
Meat, farofa, vatapá, beans, and veggies.
We saved some space to try some incredible ice cream from one extremely well-rated ice cream bar nearby called Frida & Mina. The queue was freaking massive when we arrived, so it had to be good. We must’ve waited 20 minutes for this damn ice cream but it was so delicious and perfect for a long day of walking under the intense Brazilian sun. I had a scoop of ginger and honey ice-cream and scoop of macadamia nut brittle ice-cream in a freshly made cone. DELICIOUS. They have some crazy unique flavours there, like strawberry and balsamic, chocolate and beer… and the inside seating area was also so lovely, it was a perfect place to relax with ya cone.
SOME TINY KITTIES UP FOR ADOPTION THAT WE SAW ON THE WAY THERE.
Ice-creamed up, we caught the metro to Instituto Moreira Salles, which was a few floors in a seriously fancy building dedicated to photography. It has a bunch of free exhibits and a great view of Paulista Avenue, which was closed off to vehicles for the public to walk, skate, bike and do whatever. Usually, this happens every Sunday but luckily there was some holiday happening that Saturday so we luckily had both days of the free road.
We walked down Paulista Avenue enjoying the hustle and bustle of people cycling, skating, playing music, dancing and more. The view was amazing, especially as the sun was setting, reflecting rich amber streaks across the sky from shiny buildings. It felt very New York again, minus endless traffic, but again I have no idea what New York is like ha ha ha.
We walked all the way down the avenue, ate some sugar-coma-inducing churros and nearly went inside the famous Museum de Arte de Sao Paulo Assis Chateaubriand (MASP) but it was really expensive so we gave that one a miss and took a photo of the outside instead. Close enough.
Churros, filled with doce de leite and topped with brigadeiro (left) and this coconut sweetened condensed milk sauce thing (right).
We then travelled to see Hotel Unique which is this crazy looking hotel, like some watermelon/Noah’s ark kind of shit. There was a sky bar we wanted to check out but we got there too early, before it had opened, and really just couldn’t be bothered to wait ha ha ha. An uber rescued us and took us back to our apartment so we could soak up the last evening in our beautiful apartment. I do enjoy a good night out, and we had many evening activities planned for São Paulo, but sightseeing all day really takes it out of you. Definitely something needs to be sacrificed, lest you go insane (or if you just have insomnia and plan to never sleep). It was the evenings out for us, but it wasn’t such a tragic loss after buying a bunch of beers and snacks to pass out in front of Netflix with.