Want to get out on the town without spending a lot of money? Discover the best free tours to do in São Paulo today
The biggest city in South America offers its visitors several options for tours, leisure and tourism. Amidst the gigantic buildings, the traffic and the rush of everyday life, Sao Paulo, offers tours for all tastes and styles, ranging from gastronomic centers, tours for art lovers, adventures, shopping, parties, cultural itineraries and lots of history.
THE capital of paulista is known for being the main financial and economic center of Brazil, it is not normally on the list of the most sought after cities by leisure tourists, but it has great potential to attract many travelers from all over the world.
With more than 21 million inhabitants only in the metropolitan region, in São Paulo, you can find a little bit of every corner of the world, in one place, as the population of São Paulo is one of the most diverse in the world, as it has received a large number of of Italian, Japanese, Arab, African and Portuguese immigrants. These migratory masses facilitated the development and cultural mix found in the region. That's why we've separated for you a complete guide with 70 must-see free tours to do in São Paulo within today. Check out the full selection we have prepared:
Free tours in Sao Paulo
Farol Santander viewpoint
THE Sao Paulo City An even more beautiful view from the top of Farol Santander, the old building of Banespa, a historic building with 35 floors and 161 meters in height. The visit is free and offers a panorama of the city's skyscrapers and Sé Cathedral.
Recently Av. Paulista received another interesting leisure center that deserves to be visited in the city. Japan House is one of the free tours in SP and unites art, gastronomy and technology, in a modernized building, with an exclusive focus on promoting oriental culture internationally. The network also has locations in London and Los Angeles.
Different events, parties, shows, fairs and shows occupy the thinking world every month. The space is a house of independent culture and works as a collective dedicated to promoting different artistic manifestations in the city.
Every Thursday, at 8:00 pm, the São Paulo night walking group meets in front of the Municipal Theater and offers a free city tour in SP in the night period.
Moreira Salles Institute
São Paulo hosts one of the three units of Instituto Moreira Salles – IMS, a Brazilian non-governmental organization that brings together different activities related to photography, visual arts, cinema, literature and music. Located on Av. Paulista, the Moreira Salles Institute de São Paulo has 9 floors dedicated to the world of the arts. Exhibition halls, cinema, study space, classrooms, a cafeteria and a restaurant. The exhibitions and most of the activities offered are free.
One of free attractions in Sao Paulo is popularly known as “market”, attracts visitors from all corners of the world for its variety of flavors found in the stalls and stores, in addition to its beautiful architecture, the São Paulo Municipal Market also houses a very busy food center.
Ibirapuera Planetarium and School of Astrophysics
The Ibirapuera Planetarium is located inside the park and offers a space dedicated to visitors who want to know more about science and astronomy. The public can contemplate celestial bodies at the observatory, in addition to participating in lectures and guided tours. At the Municipal School of Astrophysics, also in Ibirapuera Park, there are workshops and courses free open to the public, with classes on astronomy and related topics. Free entry.
Stroll along Av. Paulista
During Sundays, the traffic of cars from Av. Paulista makes room for a large open-air leisure area. The avenue is closed to cars and is dominated by people who occupy the avenue for cycling, skateboarding or rollerblading. Take the opportunity to listen to street bands, see artistic performances or walk among the artisans' stalls that exhibit different styles of work. The route also offers a huge range of places with free visitation in São Paulo.
Sao Paulo Free Walking Tour
For those visiting the city of São Paulo, the free walking tour allow you to get to know cool spots in the city walking, in pre-defined itineraries and with more people to accompany you. Some of the most visited destinations are: surroundings of Av. Paulista, Centro Velho and Vila Madalena. Free activity.
Bike Tour Sao Paulo
Following the same logic as free walking, bike tours are also free and dedicated to cycling lovers. The group provides bicycles and organizes ten routes that pass through the city's tourist attractions, such as Parque do ibirapuera and Av. Paulista. Free participation.
Stroll through Roosevelt Square
Lovers of theater and nightlife will love the alternative bars and theaters located on the outskirts of the traditional Praça Roosevelt, in some cases the program has free entrya, with a fixed amount or free contribution.
Discover the Municipal Theater from the inside
In addition to the shows, the Sao Paulo Municipal Theater also offers a guided tour of the interior of the building, telling about the current activities of the house and some of the curiosities that happened in this historic building.
Municipal Theater Dance School
The Municipal Theater Dance School works as an annex to the theater and has been in existence for over 75 years, offering free courses and dance workshops for children, youth and adults.
Latin America Memorial
Visit one of the buildings by Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Stay tuned for the space schedule, there are always cooking fairs and events about Latin America.
Terrace of the Martinelli Building
Overlooking the city center and the old Banespa building – the emblematic building with the flag of the state of São Paulo, the Martinelli Building It is another very visited viewpoint and is located very close to the República subway station.
Take a guided tour of Sala São Paulo
On Sunday mornings, there are free classical music concerts at Sala São Paulo, followed by a guided tour of the building. Discover this traditional São Paulo show house.
Discover the São Bento Monastery
Home to the Benedictine monks of the city of São Paulo, visitors can be visited from Monday to Wednesday and Friday, from 6 am to 6 pm, and on Saturdays, from 6 am to 12 pm and Sundays, from 4 pm to 6 pm, respectively.
Stroll through the center and Praça da Sé
In the center of the capital of São Paulo are the city's cathedral and the Marco Zero de São Paulo. This is one of the busiest parts of the old city center and can be the starting point for your tours.
Zu Lai Temple
The Zu Lai Temple is the largest Buddhist shrine in Latin America, and although the temple is not located in the city of São Paulo, it is only 45 km to reach the attraction, located in Cotia. Both entry and parking are free for visitors.
Banco do Brasil Cultural Center – CCBB
Another free tour option to do in São Paulo is to visit the Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil. This cultural space brings together major temporary exhibitions dedicated to the universe of Brazilian arts. The schedule is defined in advance and published on the CCBB website, where the schedules of workshops and exhibitions are posted. Free entrance.
Red Bull Station
THE Red Bull Station occupies an old building in the city center, dating from 1926 and listed as a Historical Heritage, the building has recently reopened and brings a program with lots of music, gastronomy and cultural itineraries.
As well as Av. Paulista and also on Sundays, the Elevado João Goulart, known as “Minhocão”, becomes a great leisure center. With car access blocked, people from São Paulo and tourists take advantage of the tranquility of this part of the center to walk and practice outdoor exercises.
CAMPUS Google Sao Paulo
Entrepreneurs, startups and technology professionals are focused on the CAMPUS Google São Paulo unit, open to the public since 2016, in the Paraíso neighborhood. In addition to the free coworking space, dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship in the capital of São Paulo, other activities are also offered in this Google building. Visitors can take advantage of these spaces to work, find digital projects, chat with professionals in the field, participate in courses or simply have a coffee on the top floor of the building.
Other cheap or free tours to do in São Paulo
Another independent space that deserves to be visited in the city of São Paulo is the cultural center Matilha Cultural. The headquarters is very close to Praça da República, with easy access for those using private transport or subway. Visitors find parties, temporary exhibitions and themed events at affordable prices or completely free. The space also hosts activities related to the debate on human rights, social issues, the environment and politics.
Viewpoint 9th of July
Live music, events and parties pack the cultural space Mirante 9 de Julho, very close to MASP – Museu de Arte de São Paulo. The viewpoint also has a cafeteria, restaurant and always hosts themed parties. Check out the vast program that the space always shares on social media.
Gastronomic Festivals Vila Butantan
You foodtrucks are spread throughout the city, but it is in Vila Butantan that they have a reserved space, offering options with dishes gourmets and with local preparations at affordable prices.
Rio Verde Cultural Center
Lots of parties and independent shows at the Centro Cultural Rio Verde, in the Vila Madalena neighborhood. The live shows pay tribute to Brazilian music, samba, reggae and dub. The house always brings a special schedule every week, it is worth following the calendar of events published on social networks.
Other free place to visit in São Paulo is the Ibirapuera Park. The green area is one of the first large urban parks in Brazil, it can be a great tour for those who want to enjoy the city without spending too much. In addition to a lot of green areas, the park also offers numerous cultural spaces, museums and sports courts.
São Paulo Cultural Center – CCSP
THE São Paulo Cultural Center located on R. Vergueiro, close to the Paraíso Metro and Av. Paulista. The center has several cultural spaces and a lively agenda for those visiting São Paulo. In it you will find dance halls, cinema, theater, art workshops, living spaces, a library with more than 120 thousand titles and a space with a restaurant and snack bar. The space is open from Tuesday to Friday, from 10 am to 8 pm, and on Saturdays and Sundays, from 10 am to 6 pm.
Brazilian House Museum
Brazilian architecture and design are the main subjects of the Museu da Casa Brasileira. The MCB guarantees a lively program with different activities related to the Brazilian home, with debates, conversation circles, lectures, educational programs and temporary and long-term exhibitions. The museum also displays a collection of decorative pieces, art objects, silverware and porcelain from different countries around the world.
CULT Magazine Space
A cultural center dedicated to bringing together creatives from the world of music and the visual arts. THE CULT Magazine Space is an extension of the brand and works as a cultural center, located in the neighborhood of Aclimação. Debates, courses, book launches, exhibitions, an art fair and different programs are offered on site.
Luz Park and Pinacoteca
This park in São Paulo offers a green space in the heart of the city. Nearby you will also find the Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, another option for a free tour to do around the city.
Alberto Lofgren State Park
Alberto Löfgren State Park, the former Horto Florestal, is an area located in a large urban center, but with extensive swaths of native Atlantic Forest still preserved.
The Botanical Garden is one of the free places to visit in São Paulo. There are approximately 360 thousand square meters of green area, with numerous native species of Brazilian flora, being one of the main tourist attractions in the city of São Paulo.
Procopio Ferreira Theater
The Teatro Procópio Ferreira is another traditional venue in São Paulo, founded in 1948, on Rua Augusta. The greatest personalities of the country have already performed at the house, which hosts shows to this day.
Visit the São Paulo City Hall Building
In the building it is possible to take a guided tour that passes through the hall and ends on the terrace, with three viewpoints with incredible views of the center.
It sounds strange, but the cemetery is a great tour for anyone who likes to appreciate beautiful, personalized artwork. In the place you will find tombs of great personalities, such as the plastic artist Tarsila do Amaral and the writer Monteiro Lobato.
It is in the West Zone of São Paulo, in the neighborhood of Vila Madalena, which concentrates a good number of bars and nightclubs in the city. As there is a wide range of hostels in the neighborhood, it is always possible to see a large number of foreign tourists strolling through the neighborhood.
It is in the Liberdade district, in the center of São Paulo, that the visitor understands a little of the strong oriental presence in the capital of São Paulo. The city is home to the largest Japanese community in the world, residing outside of Japan. In the traditional neighborhood you can find numerous stores with Asian products, restaurants, popular fairs and even the Chinese New Year party, which is also celebrated in the neighborhood.
Mooca is a traditional Italian neighborhood, located close to the city center. The region became known for its traditional pasta, restaurants specializing in international cuisine and the famous cannoli, a typical Sicilian sweet filled with cream, sold at the Juventus stadium.
Italian cantinas, art shops, antique fairs and bars can be found in the Bixiga district, a bohemian stronghold in the city. Cradle of São Paulo samba, the place still has excellent small bars, which fill the streets with samba circles. Elis Regina, Adoniran Barbosa and other renowned sambistas frequented the bars on Rua 13 de Maio and surroundings.
Another viewpoint to see the city from above is Praça do Pôr do Sol, in the Alto de Pinheiros district. the square turned point for those who want to contemplate the sunset in a privileged view, with good music and a beautiful sunset.
Located in Vila Madalena, Beco do Batman is a true open-air urban art gallery, with various graffiti covering all the walls of the alley. There, it is also possible to enjoy live music in the bars and events that take place in the surroundings.
Carnival rehearsal at the Rosas De Ouro court
Even if you're not a big fan of Carnival, it's worth taking a peek at the open rehearsals of Rosas de Ouro. Feel the energy of the biggest Brazilian party, getting to know the backstage of one of the most traditional samba schools in the city.
For those who like rock n' roll and everything that surrounds this universe, Galeria do Rock is the right place to stroll in São Paulo, located in the city center. The gallery is an ideal stop for those looking for different things related to music, whether you want to buy clothes, records, get a tattoo or just to look at the wide variety of products on display in stores.
Benedito Calixto Square
Dozens of exhibitors transform Praça Benedito Calixto into a true open-air antiques fair. The fair sells numerous antique objects and relics from all corners of the world, bringing several antique dealers in the city to exhibit their products every Saturday, starting at 9 am.
Nightlife on Rua Augusta
Marked by its clubs, concert halls and alternative bars, the Augusta Street it has always been a reference for a place to enjoy the busy nights in the city. Located very close to Av. Paulista, this is one of the favorite streets to meet friends, dance at a club, enjoy a show, a comedy club or just enjoy the bars and street restaurants.
House of Knowledge
Casa do Saber is one of the most democratic and interesting spaces in São Paulo. The space works as a great creative school, with topics ranging from psychoanalysis, through philosophy to subjects related to finance. A debate center that also offers access to culture with free courses open to the public, lectures and workshops.
In addition to the dedicated space for the library, serving as a study center, the Villa-Lobos Library also offers activities for people of all ages, with free admission. Attendees can visit exhibits, workshops and even a playthrough of the classic PacMan video game for kids.
SP School of Theater
Visitors of all ages can visit the headquarters of SP School of Theater, at Praça Roosevelt, which has temporary performances that are on display every month. The space is also open to those who wish to participate in workshops and free courses in theater, circus, humor, dramaturgy, costumes, scenography, lighting, among other artistic specialties.
Estúdio Lâmina navigates through different artistic modalities, perfect for understanding a little of the independent scenes that take place in São Paulo. A mix of creative studio, art gallery and artist residency, the space is located right in the heart of the city and has become a meeting point for photographers, musicians, filmmakers and other independent artists from different areas.
Júlio Prestes Station
The São Paulo Cultural Secretariat is located at Estação Júlio Prestes, where concerts by the State Symphony Orchestra are also held.
Discover the College Pateo
A historical and cultural complex that belongs to the Society of Jesus, a Jesuit religious order of great importance in the city of São Paulo.
Visit Solar da Marquesa
For those who like history and curiosities, be sure to visit the last urban residential building from the 17th century. In the place it is still possible to find the belongings of Dona Maria Domitila, known as the Marquise of Santos.
Tours for those who want to shop in São Paulo or just take a “look”
Shopping on Rua Augusta
In addition to bars and nightclubs that move the city at night, the busiest street in Av. Paulista also brings together numerous stores that can be visited. There are brands of fashion accessories, clothing, electronics, alternative stores, atelier of designers and artists, as well as different options of collaborative stores, where you can find products from artisans from different locations in one place.
Icon and main postcard of the city of São Paulo, Av Paulista is a little less than 3 km long and provides great tours for those looking to shop in the capital. Shopping Paulista, Galeria Boulevard Mont Maré and Top Center Paulista, offer a wide variety of products and national brands.
March 25th Street
Want to decorate your whole house or buy gifts at really low prices? Then go to Rua 25 de Março, the place is known as the biggest commercial center in the city of São Paulo. The entire street and its alleys are dedicated to those who want to make cheap purchases, whether for decorative items, jewelry, backpacks, shoes and various home products.
JK Iguatemi Mall
The shopping center located in Vila Olímpia, offers a large luxury shopping space to its visitors. Stores like Arezzo, Carolina Herrera and Chanel are just some of the brand options available at this mall.
The neighborhood is famous for its good quality clothing stores and affordable prices, being one of the main clothing hubs in the city of São Paulo. Want to find a multitude of stores with really low prices? That's the right address. A great option for free tours in São Paulo.
Redoubt of prestigious and luxurious stores, Rua Oscar Freire is in the Jardins district and concentrates boutiques, cafes, fine restaurants and famous stores. National and international brands are scattered across the street, such as Diesel, PANDORA, Calvin Klein and others.
Useful links for your trip to São Paulo
Plan your trip to Sao Paulo:
Check out a selection of articles with tips for tourism in São Paulo to help you plan your trip:
- Where to stay in Sao Paulo
- Museums in Sao Paulo
- Shopping in Sao Paulo
- Things to do in São Paulo at night
- Best restaurants in Sao Paulo
- 2 and 3 days itinerary in São Paulo
- Cheap flights to SP
Book your hotel in Sao Paulo
In addition to having several promotions, the Booking.com has the possibility of free cancellation. Check out an article with tips on the best neighborhoods and hotels to stay close to the main tourist attractions in São Paulo.
If you prefer AirBnB, there are several amazing apartments and rooms in the City of São Paulo. In this link you Get discounts on your first AirBnB stay.
- Book hotels in São Paulo on Booking.com
- Book AirBnB
Car rental in Sao Paulo
THE rent cars is the leading car rental site in Latin America and offers up to 60% discount on reservations. In addition, those who use the platform do not have to worry about IOF fees and have advantages with easier payment methods and free service cancellation.
Flights to Sao Paulo
THE MaxMiles is one of the references for those looking for cheap travel. The site sells airline tickets with up to 50% off. They get these attractive values because they buy airline tickets with miles from people who want to sell points. Everything is done with total security and has become the favorite site for frequent travelers who always buy tickets, simulate the value of your flight with MaxMilhas.
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