Belo Horizonte: A Complete City
From the football pitch to the dining table
Football fandom in Brazil is practically a religion and Belo Horizonte is no exception. Independência Stadium and Governador Magalhães Pinto Stadium (or Mineirão, as the locals call it) were the stage for the 1950 and 2014 World Cups. These events have helped to shine a light on the city and increase the influx of tourists in search of local attractions... which inevitably include food and nightlife.
Nightlife and Culture in the Horizon
To help with your digestion, nothing like tasting the local alcoholic beverages — cachaça and caipirinha — and go out for some dancing. A local proverb will tell you a lot about life in Belo Horizonte: não temos mar, vamos ao bar (“We have no sea, let’s go the bar”). Most socializing occurs around a night out with a nice dinner and drinks, and Belo Horizonte is known as the country’s “pub capital” (“capital do boteco”).
To find out more about this side of the city, just go to one of the many bars and nightspots near the Savassi area or Avenida do Contorno. The more dedicated night owls can also head for the clubs and bars at Mercado das Borboletas, (“Butterfly Market”) another local landmark where you can dance to electronic music and Brazilian funk, or maybe catch a concert.
Belo Horizonte’s musical scene has brought forth some talent during the last few decades. During the 1960’s, Milton Nascimento, one of Brazil’s most important singer-songwriters, settled here to begin his career. During the 80’s and 90’s, the city became a heavy metal capital after a local band, Sepultura, built a successful international career. Classical music is also played here: the Minas Gerais Philharmonic Orchestra regularly plays at its auditorium, Sala Minas Gerais.
The extensive music, dance and theatre programming at SESC Palladium and Palácio das Artes, cultural centres also underscore the importance of culture in Belo Horizonte’s daily life. At the city centre we also find the Circuito Cultural Praça da Liberdade — this former government block now houses an extensive museum area, including institutions like Memorial Minas Gerais Vale (a museum dedicated to Minas Gerais’ art, culture and history) and Centro de Arte Popular Mineira. Also near Praça da Liberdade, architecture buffs can enjoy the Niemeyer Building, a work by the great brazilian architect Óscar Niemeyer.
A Trip through Nature
In Belo Horizonte, the modern world coexists with Nature. The local climate is pleasant all year round and encourages visitors to enjoy ecotourism and outdoor activities.