Sao Paulo

As Brazil’s financial and commercial centre, São Paulo is a popular choice for expats looking to explore new career opportunities in South America.

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São Paulo’s economic power has brought all the trimmings of a modern megacity from top end restaurants to world class entertainment. Yet it is the vibrant, cosmopolitan culture as well as the temperate climate that so many expats have fallen in love with.

São Paulo Suburb Profiles


Known by locals as ‘Little Manhattan’ this sought after suburb attracts the great and glamorous of São Paulo with its unrivalled selection of restaurants and designer shops. There is a wide variety of accommodation from apartments to large houses, but the beautiful architecture and prestigious postcode comes with a high price tag.

Alto de Pinheiros

To the west of central São Paulo lies the green and pleasant neighbourhood of Alto de Pinheiros. Its leafy streets are lined with attractive homes and there are excellent road links to the city centre making it a great choice for families moving to São Paulo.


Ibirapuera is a group of neighbourhoods surrounding the large, beautiful park of the same name. With a trendy, cosmopolitan atmosphere, its ideal for those wanting to be close to the action yet also offers plenty of green space and stunning views over Iberapuera Park.


A few kilometres southwest of the city centre, Brooklin is vibrant suburb popular with expats. The largely residential ‘Old Brooklin’ boasts an array of parks and relatively affordable housing while ‘New Brooklin’ is a fast growing commercial area with excellent shopping and exciting employment opportunities.

Transport / Getting  Around São Paulo

With wide, modern roads and highways dissecting the city, the car remains the most popular means of transport. However, with over 7 million cars, the heavy traffic can be a bit of shock for those moving to São Paulo. The bus network is extensive and widely used with dedicated bus lanes throughout much of the city. If you’re travelling further afield, you can catch a bus to dozens of destinations across the country from the second largest bus terminal in the world at Tieitê. The city’s commuter rail network is a slightly safer option and is currently being widely extended and improved. Taxis are generally reliable, easy to find and by far the best option after dark. São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport is the busiest in Brazil and offers direct flights to London.

Leisure Activities and Things to Do in São Paulo

Considered by many to be the cultural heart of Brazil, São Paulo has an embarrassment of museums and galleries. The Museu de Arte de São Paulo is undoubtedly the jewel in the crown with striking architecture and works by Goya and Picasso. There is also the stunning museum of modern art, there’s even a museum celebrating the national sport, football. Paulistanos are also passionate about shopping and a stroll through the designer boutiques of Rua Oscar Freire is a must for any fashionista. For a more budget-friendly retail experience, the vast, domed Mercado Municipal is packed with enticing food from across Brazil and live music every Sunday. You don’t have to venture far from downtown São Paulo to find some open space to explore, the lush beauty of Ibirapuera Park is an oasis of green in the heart of the city. A little further south, the city’s pretty Botanic Gardens and nearby Zoo are well worth a day trip.

Fun facts about São Paulo

  • With almost 20 million people living in the wider metropolitan area, São Paulo is the third largest city in the world.
  • São Paulo’s Italian community has had a significant cultural influence on the city, over 1 million pizzas are consumed every day.
  • The ‘Clean City Law’, passed in 2006, banned all billboards, hoardings and any such ‘visual pollution’
  • There are almost 500 registered helicopters in São Paulo, the largest fleet in any city across the world.


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