Inhotim: Contemporary art in a botanical garden
Instituto Inhotim is home to a museological complex featuring a series of pavilions and galleries with works of art and sculptures on display in the open air. The gardens are in 35,000 acres of jungle, lawns, lakes, mature trees and plants beautifully landscaped and immaculately maintained. It is the personal project of Brazilian billionaire Bernardo de Mello Paz. There are electric buggies to take you to the more distant parts of the complex but there is still plenty of walking. To give an idea of its scale we were told that there are 1,200 employees. It is about 50 km SW of Belo Horizonte
Take comfortable footwear, hat sun cream. There are restaurants and cafes of different types from pizza, hot dogs, a very reasonably priced self-service restaurant and an expensive but very nice formal restaurant. There are plenty of drinking fountains, toilets. There are guides at every corner who are well trained and helpful. If you are interested in art and nature you will not be able to see it all in one day. If you can allocate two or three days it will be much more relaxed. If you want to save the price of the electric buggy rides it makes sense to buy a ticket one day and see all the distant features and stay closer to the entrance on the other day(s). Entryis free on Tuesdays. There are plans to open a hotel in Inhotim and there are a few pleasant pousadas in and around Brumadinho. You will need a car to stay in them.
These things are very subjective but after travelling extensively in Brazil Inhotim is my second favourit place after Iguaçu - yes, in front of Sugar Loaf and Christ the Redeemer in Rio! It is a rare Brazilian example of a facility which equals anything available in Europe or the US in organisation and efficliency.
Museu Histórico Abílio Barreto
A great museum for history lovers, named after the 20th century writer Abílio Barreto.
Sprawling Belo Horizonte was little more than a farm (fazenda) until 1893, and this museum, set in the farm's only surviving buildings. The history is brought back to life in MHAB (the initials of the museum and how it is called by Mineros), of this city that is a bit more than a hundred years old, but what changes it has gone through! A new building was inagurated in 1998 next to the old one with contemporary exhibits, a library, auditorium and a pleasant cafe. The museum buildings are set in a pleasant park.
Open tuesday-monday, 10-17h
- Historical Travel
- Museum Visits
- Arts and Culture
Pampulha is a picture postcard city. It has something to offer every kind of tourist, from scenic beauty to sports. The weather is pleasant and the surroundings are beautiful, thanks to the 18 km long lagoon. It is along this lagoon that the famous race "Volta Internacional da Pampulha" is held every year. This 18 kilometre race was first held in 1993 and has since been attracting an increasing number of participants every year.
Pampulha is also home to the Belo Horizonte Zoo, the Ecological Park and the Burle Max gardens. The Pampulha Airport, the Minas Gerais Federal University (UFMG) and the Art Museum of Pampulha are important landmarks here.
The architectural fan can observe the modernist structures of Oscar Niemeyer, while the aesthetically inclined can soak in the beauty of the sculptures of José Pedrosa, Zamoisski and Ceschiatti as well as the paintings by Cândido Portinari. Xapuri in one of the many restaurants where you can get a good meal.
Main Attractions in Pampulha
Pampulha Architectural Complex
Oscar Niemeyer is one of the architects credited with changing the face of Brazilian architecture. His signature creation is the complex in Pampulha. The complex includes the buildings listed below.
Igreja São Francisco de Assis - Igrejinha da Pampulha (São Francisco de Assis Church)
This church is a must see for its bold and original design. Its beauty is enhanced by the gardens designed by Burle Max and the paintings on the external and internal panels by Portinari. You will be required to pay a small entrance fee here.
Museu de Arte da Pampulha (Pampulha Museum of Art)
This building was originally a casino. However, when Brazil prohibited gambling in 1946, the authorities converted it into the Museum of Arts in 1957.
Casa do Baile (The Ball House)
This rounded building along the edge of the lagoon used to be the favourite haunt of the rich and the famous of Belo Horizonte in the 1940's. It used to be the venue for lavish dance parties. Today, the Centre of Reference in Urbanism, it hosts architecture functions. Many exhibitions and events are held here as well.
Mineirão - Estádio Governador Magalhaes Pinto (Mineirão - Soccer Stadium)
This is one of the largest soccer stadiums in the world, attracting thousands of tourists each year. A must see for all soccer fanatics, the stadium was constructed in 1965 and has seen many historic soccer matches and legendary concerts. Soccer fans should try to catch a match played by the Atlético Mineiro or the Cruzeiro team! There is an entrance fee for the stadium. Also try our Belo Horizonte's Football Experience activity.
Mineirinho - Estádio Jornalista Felipe Drummond (Mineirinho Stadium)
The Mineirinho stadium was built in 1980 and can hold up to 25,000 people. Many games are played in this stadium which holds the world record for the number of people at a volleyball and indoor soccer game! Every Thursday and Sunday there is a handcraft fair held at this stadium.
Parque Ecológico da Pampulha
The second largest green area in Belo Horizonte, Parque Ecológico da Pampulha, is ideal not only for strolling and stretching out under the trees, but also for practicing sports and playing a game. (Look for more information under the section on Parks and Squares).
Zoológico - Fundação Zoobotânica de Belo Horizonte (Zoo-Botanical Foundation of Belo Horizonte)
This zoo is known to be one of the most extensive zoos in Latin America. It is also home to the first butterfly sanctuary in South America. There is a centre in the zoo which is engaged in the conservation and preservation of species that are under the threat of extinction.
Pampulha lagoon is the most popular running place here in Belo Horizonte. There you can enjoy beautiful views and the weather is pleasant during all the year. There aren't any toilets, but you can find many places where you can buy mineral water. The 18km course is flat with many corners passing near some of the city's main attractions like: Mineirinho, Mineirão, Igrejinha and the Zoo.
BELO HORIZONTE: PALACIO DAS ARTES
Stop by Palacio das Artes, next to the Parque Municipal to check out if there are any shows, concerts or exhibitions that are worth seeing.
The day I was there, I happened upon a very moving and excellent exhibition on the works of French photographer Pierre Verger.
BELO HORIZONTE: PARQUE MUNICIPAL
The Municipal Park located right smack in the city centre, next to Av. Afonso Pena is a lovely garden, with several lakes and canals where you can spend a great afternoon strolling, admiring the flowers, reading a book or rowing a boat, like the locals.
Belo Horizonte in a Glance
To begin with get a map of Belo Horizonte and highlight Contorno Ave.(circular ring road) that is the city itself. It was planned and built in 1897. In a couple of days you can see all it has to offer, museum about the city, library, theatre, park, buildings, malls. The streets North to South are named after Brazilian states( Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Espirito Santo and so on). The streets east to west are named after Brazilian indian tribes( Goitacazes, Aimores, Tupis, Timbiras and so on). Walking or simply stroling around
Minas Tenis Club, Liberty square(praca da Liberdade), Marilia square(praca Marilia de Dirceu) are the city must go and see.
- Budget Travel
- Business Travel
walking the Streets
of Belo with its beautiful Architecture and abundance of Parks, making up for the absence of Beaches we all assocciate with Brasil.
Belo was planned to become the new Capital of Minas Gerais, in Substitution for Ouro Preto. the City planners made a great fist of it too, laying out a generous plan and creating space, dazzeld with greenery and water features. Belo's Praca da Liberdade and Park Pampulha just to name two of them. Churches and Markets, fine Architecture from the late 19th century.
Belo was founded in 1897..I had to look that up.. situated in the southeast of Brasil, surrounded by a low Mountain Range which protects the City from the heat and gives the City a great deal of quality of life.
- Work Abroad
Art and nature
Inhotim, an open air museum with gorgeous landscape and contemporary art. It is worth a 2 days visit and there are some hotels in the area.
- Family Travel
- Arts and Culture
- Museum Visits
Made in the Shade: Parque Municipal Américo Renê G
A large and busy city, which could be a challenge if you're traveling with kids. Head to this park, where there are lots of shade trees, playgrounds for kids and room to roam.
- Family Travel
- Hiking and Walking
Praca da Liberdade
Lot of different architecture styles around this park....
...might be one of the most importants "pracas" in BH.
- Historical Travel
- School Holidays
and visiting the Parks
just an other look of the green and water feature of the Praca da Liberdade and Municipel Park
very much frequented by old and young
bring a picnic basquet
- Arts and Culture
- Book now for big savings!
- Hotels.com Outstanding choice of hotels all over the world at fantastic prices.
- Save money, Book now!
- Booking.com Excellent choice, Low rates