Brasilia Travel Guide
Introduction to Brasilia
Prior to the 1960’s, the spot where Brasilia stands today was nothing more than undisturbed savanna, with little hint of any human habitation.
Within the space of a decade, that all changed, as the desire for a modern capital that expressed Brazil’s ambitions to become a developed country led to the development of a city that is now home to over 2.5 million people.
While this city lacks the history and cultural traditions that just about every other major urban centres in Brazil possesses, the abundance of modernist architecture makes this place a dream for fans of this style of building,
Considering its location amidst the central Brazil Highlands, it is a great base for further explorations of this part of the country.
Cultural Attractions to Brasilia
While this city was created in the 1960’s, there are number of interesting cultural attractions that can be found within the borders of Brasilia.
The first of these is the Catedral Metropolitana, which is a modernist cathedral that is a dramatic departure from what most people envision when they think of a Christian church.
Resembling a native wigwam to North American visitors, this structure consist of 16 concrete pillars, and in the spaces between them and across the ceiling, a combination of clear and stained glass creates an atmosphere unlike any that you will ever experience anywhere else in the world.
Structure your stay in Brasilia so that you can visit this unique attraction on a sunny morning or evening, as careful planning related to the time of day and weather conditions will pay off for avid photographers.
That isn’t all when it comes to notable churches in the Brasilia area, as the Santuario Dom Bosco also draws rave reviews from pilgrims and travelers alike.
Named after an Italian saint that once envisioned a utopian city where everyone lived in harmony. In his dream, he foretold of this place being built in the New World, between 15 and 20 degrees south latitude.
When Brazilian urban planners were considering building a modern capital for the country from scratch in the 20th century, it is said they drew their inspiration for Brasilia from Dom Bosco’s prophecy.
Whether this was true or not, visitors will be thoroughly impressed with the sanctuary, especially since its exterior brutalist architecture conceals the amazing interior design that can be found within.
The slats between the concrete facing on the exterior of the Dom Bosco sanctuary are filled with 12 different shades of blue glass in cube formation, turning sunlight into a blue light that will amaze first-time visitors to this church.
Another unmissable site here is the chandelier that is suspended above the altar, as it is comprised of 7,400 different types of crystal and glass.
While are many cultural institutions focused on the arts in Brasilia, local residents consider the Banco do Brasil Cultural Centre to be the best of them all.
Home to many theatrical productions and concerts, it also contains galleries that play host to many world renowned artists and/or their work.
With a well sculpted garden on site, it is also a great place to enjoy a leisurely meal, so feel free to schedule a visit over lunch hour with a picnic spread in tow.
Other Attractions to Brasilia
A more recent addition to the vast collection of modern’st buildings and structures in Brasilia is the Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge.
Completed in the early 2000’s, the signature arches of this span have proven to be popular with local photographers, and have even become a visual icon of the city itself in the eyes of many of its residents.
Looking to enjoy a great evening complete with food and drink with travel friends? After walking along the paths that line the parkland that can be found at Pontao do Lago Sul, there are many restaurants and bars where one can enjoy some of this city’s finest cuisine while watching the sun set.
Located along the southwest arm of Lago Paranoa, it is a great place to go if you’re looking to let your hair down.
Want to enjoy some nature during your time in Brasilia? Fortunately, Brasilia National Park is located a short drive from the city center, as the proximity of this ecological reserve was a consideration when planners were looking for a place to build Brasilia.
Renowned for its mineral springs, and species such as Black Howler Monkeys and Jaguars, this is a great place to get out and enjoy the central Brazilian Highlands, while still being a short drive from all the conveniences that Brasilia has to offer.