6 Must-See Museums in São Paulo
São Paulo’s museums are as diverse and eclectic as the city’s cultural heritage, and range from world-class art galleries to one of Latin America’s top sporting museums. Here are a few of the best museums in the city to add to your itinerary.
São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP)
One of the city's most prestigious art museums.
São Paulo’s most renowned art institution is also one of the city’s most striking architectural landmarks, the work of architect Lina Bo Bardi. Looming over Avenida Paulista on four red concrete pillars, the São Paulo Museum of Art (MASP) showcases contemporary Brazilian masters such as Portinari alongside international superstars such as Picasso.
Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo
For some of the best Brazilian art.
Housed in a gorgeous neoclassical manse—formerly the city’s first art academy—the Pinacoteca do Estado dates back to back to the early 20th century. Its vast permanent collection focuses on modern and classical Brazilian paintings and sculptures.
Get an insight into the beautiful game.
Brazil’s passion for football takes center stage at the Football Museum (Museu do Futebol), housed in the Pacaembu Stadium, one of Brazil’s oldest football venues. Inside, highlights include an impressive World Cup exhibition detailing every tournament from 1930 to present day, a multimedia recreation of a Brazilian soccer match, and footage of some of Brazil’s most legendary sporting moments.
Interactive and immersive science exhibits.
Located in the historic Palace of Industry in Dom Pedro II Park, the Catavento Cultural is a unique science museum designed to get kids excited about life and the universe. It’s filled with interactive exhibits, hands-on activities, and kinetic displays on subjects such as the solar system, the human body, and chemistry.
Instituto Tomie Ohtake
Admire contemporary works.
Standing sentry over the Pinheiros district, the two-toned glass skyscraper housing the Instituto Tomie Ohtake features impactful photography exhibitions and contemporary art installations.
Home to multiple top museums.
The leafy Ibirapuera Park is home to a number of art museums, including the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC) and the Museum of Modern Art (MAM)—both designed by Brazilian master architect Oscar Niemeyer—and the Afro-Brazilian Museum, which houses one of the world’s largest collections of Afro-Brazilian art and artifacts.
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