Sao Paulo

Trip Start Sep 10, 2007
1
8
95
Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Brazil  , State of Sao Paulo,
Monday, September 17, 2007

Well we checked out of the the lovely Hostel Inn in Iguazu, got a taxi with John from Colorado to the bus station. Purchased some fruit (it was really hard to find fruit in Argentina, which is weird, so we were glad to get some). Boarded our bus for Brazil and we were off on our way at 1pm, our arrival time in Sao Paulo is 5am - another long trip.
We were a little nervous at the Brazilian border as we were told the previous day that we didn┤t need to get an exit stamp from Brazil after we entered to see the Brazilian side of the falls. However, we thought that we should have gotten an exit stamp as our passports now indicated that we were still in Brazil. It worked out ok and the guy at the desk just said ``bye bye`` ( and run fast!), I think the fact that there was about 100 people behind us in the queue and his was the only desk open persuaded him not to make a fuss!
The bus journey! We passed hundreds of miles of corn fields and some shanty villages on the way here. We stopped at a restaurant after about 6 hours where they cleaned out the bus┤s toilet - thank god, unfortunetly on this trip our seats were next to the toilet, not good and lets just say it got rough!

18th September.
We arrived in Sao Paulo on schedule at 5am still dark, so we had lots of time to get ourselves sorted and go touring the city. Dropped the ruck sacks in lockers, got some Reals (currency here), some breaky and hit the town. This was a very successful start for us as Kieran had some Portuguese up his sleeve to get us on our merry way. The subway system here is excellent, except that there is no such thing as a day pass, only individual trips. The subway is much safer than using buses here as there are police armed with guns and night sticks everywhere. Our first stop was Praša de Se, we got a huge shock when we came out of the subway. There were lots of beggers and a bad smell in the air, the place looked very run down. From here we moved quickly to Republica, which we thought would be a better area of the city, no improvement. We decided to go to the MASP (Muesum of art Sao Paulo), this was interesting, amazing what people call art over here!
Then we went to Rua Paulista. This is the business area, a complete contrast to our first sights of the city, it kindof sums up Sao Paulo, from what we┤ve seen so far its a place of extremes. From there we went up Edificio Altion Arantes, went to the 35th floor, we were amazed when we got to the top, we could see a distance of approximately 40km in 360░, all city with many skyscrapers, this really is a city with a population of 17million, absolutely huge.
After our sight seeing we made our way to the hostel - Praca da Arvore, really nice place, relaxed after our journey with a polish girl, south African guy and an American guy, so we had good company for the evening.
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