Inspiring Curitiba: 20 photos that will make you want to visit Curitiba!

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

A picture sometimes can tell more than 1.850.775.594 words! Considering this, we have selected 20 pictures to show a little bit of our amazing and famous Curitiba… and show you why you should put Curitiba, Brazil on your travel list!

1. Jardim Botânico | Botanical Garden:

Inspired on the French gardens, the Botanical Garden of Curitiba is a famous postcard-picture landmark of Curitiba. The gorgeous greenhouse attracts many tourists and researchers from all over the world due to its exotic and wide collection of tropical and sub-tropical flora and fauna. Gorgeous! It is Curitiba’s main sightseeing place!

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Jardim Botânico - Curitiba, Brazil

2.  Museu Oscar Niemeyer | Oscar Niemeyer Museum

The amazing Oscar Niemeyer Museum is definitely another famous postcard of Curitiba. Designed by the famous and globally recognized Brazilian architect, Oscar Niemeyer. Its fabulous “eye” shaped architecture, beauty, size and collors will get you really impressed!

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Oscar Niemeyer Museum (MON) - Curitiba, Brazil

3. Universidade Federal do Paraná | Federal University of Paraná

The Universidade Federal do Paraná or Federal University of Paraná (UFPR) was established in 1912 and it is the oldest brazilian university. It is considered one of the best and hardest universities to get accepted in Brazil.  In the picture bellow you can see the historical building, the official symbol of Curitiba, located just in front of the beautiful Santos Andrade Square.

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UFPR - Federal University of Paraná, Curitiba, Brazil

4. Memorial Ucrâniano no Parque Tingui | Ukrainian Memorial at Tingui Park

Ukrainian Memorial is a very interesting and beautiful place to visit in Curitiba. Located at Tingui Park, the Ukrainian Memorial was built in honor to the important Ukranian heritage in our State. The church of the memorial is a replica of a church that exists in the countryside of Paraná State and also holds an interesting pêssankas, images, pictures, icons exhibition.

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Ukrainian Memoria at Tingui Park - Curitiba, Brazil

5. Paço da Liberdade

Paço da Liberdade is a lovely place to stroll and visit in Curitiba. The beutiful building with neoclassical details and art-nouveau drawings was built in 1916 and used to be the headquarters of the old Curitiba City Hall and Paranense Museum. Its was revitalizated in 2009 and all the details were carefully preserved. The place currently belongs to SESC and it is  a great cultural, musical and artistic place counting with library, bookstore, a charming coffee shop, movie theater, music studio, computer lab, exhibition rooms, etc.

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Paço da Liberdade - Curitiba, Brazil

6. Parque Tanguá | Tanguá Park

One of the best and most famous parks in Curitiba, Tanguá Park was built over two disabled quarries and covers a total area of 235 thousand square meters. The park is also part of the project to guarantee the preservation of the Barigui River. Besides the lakes, its artificial waterfall and tunnel attracts many visitors and it is possible to across it by foot or boat. The park has also a harbor, bike lane, race track, snack bar and parking lots. Go to Tanguá Park in the late afternoon to enjoy a amzing sundown.

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Tanguá Park - Curitiba, Brazil

7. Rua das Flores – Calçadão da XV de Novembro | Flower’s Street – Pedestrian Street

Flower’s Street is the name of the pedestrian area of the XV de Novembro street  and Luiz Xavier Avenue, located in Curitiba downtown. Inaugurated in 1972, it was the first pedestrian street in Brazil and it is characterized by its centennial buildings and houses, shops, banks, popular restaurants, tourist bars and flowerbeds in its entire extension.  Flowers Street or Rua das Flores  is also a street artists’ stage, as clowns that play, make fun and interact with the pedestrians; musicians; man-statues; plastic artists; hippies selling their handcrafts; poets; etc. A unique and original spot in Curitiba

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Calçadão da XV de Novembro - Curitiba, Brazil

8. Catedral Basílica Menor de Nossa Senhora da Luz de Curitiba | Curitiba’s  Cathedral

Located at Tiradentes Square,  the beautiful Catedral Basílica Menor de Nossa Senhora da Luz of Curitiba was built from 1876 to 1893, in neo-Gothic style, inspired in the Igreja da Sé of Barcelona. The Cathedral is dedicated and has an image of Nossa Senhora da Luz dos Pinhais, Saint Patron of Curitiba. It was founded on March 29th, 1693 and it is considered the most important construction on Tiradentes Square.

Catedral Basílica Menor de Nossa Senhora da Luz de Curitiba, Catedral de Curitiba, Curitiba's Cathedral

Catedral Basílica Menor de Nossa Senhora da Luz de Curitiba

9. Largo da Ordem | Historical Center

The old town of Curitiba, also known as Largo da Ordem or Historical Center used to be an area of intense commerce of the city. Nowadays, the area is more known by being an historical, cultural and artistic area of the city because of its old architecture of its houses, buildings and churches, such as historical monuments, artistic panels, cultural places, art galleries, bars, restaurants, etc. Every Sunday, the famous Handcraft Market or “Feirinha do Largo da Ordem” attracts a lot of locals and tourists to Largo da Ordem! Very exciting!

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Largo da Ordem - Curitiba, Brazil

10. Feirinha do Largo da Ordem |  Handcraft Market of Curitiba

The traditional and lively Handcraft Market or “Feirinha do Largo da Ordem” is held here every Sunday from 10h to 14h and it is a meeting point for locals and tourists. It was created in 1973 and is currently the second largest craft fair in Brazil! At the feirinha you can find and buy so many cool, different and interesting stuff that are made and sold by over 1,350 artisans and sellers. It is the best place to buy souvenirs in Curitiba. Do not miss it!!!

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Feirinha do Lardo da Ordem (Handcraft Market) - Curitiba, Brazil

11. Ópera de Arame | Wire Opera House

The Wire Opera House was inaugurated in 1992, in the Quarries Park, close to the Cultural Space Paulo Leminski, the Wire Opera impresses visitors for its tubular structure and transparent polycarbonate roof construction. It has capacity for 1,640 spectators and a 400m² stage to host artistic and cultural presentations. The external area of the Wire Opera is also spectacular. In the place of an old quarry, visitors can appreciate the native forest that surrounds it, lake with many fishes, several species of birds and a of 10 meters cascade. If you have the opportunity to watch a play or a concert, you must do it!

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Wire Opera House - Curitiba, Brazil

12. Parque Barigui | Barigui Park

Created in 1972, Barigui Park is one of the largest and oldest parks of Curitiba. The park received the same name of the river that was dammed to form the lake of the park. Several species of wild animals live in the park, as birds, capybaras and small rodents. Lots of people frequent the park, especially before and after work on weekdays, and along the whole day and beginning of the night, on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. The park also offers an excellent infrastructure counting with cooper track around the lake and other parts, walking and running lanes, outdoors equipments for gymnastics, barbecue grill kiosks, basketball, soccer and volleyball courts, exclusive lanes for bicycles and skateboards, bars, restaurants, etc. On beautiful and sunny days, Barigui Park is a great leisure and entertainment option for many tourists and locals, mainly the young ones.

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Barigui Park - Curitiba, Brazil

13. Torre Panorâmica da OI/Brasil Telecom | Brasil Telecom/OI’s panoramic tower

Built in 1991 by the state-owned company Telepar,  the tower belongs now to Oi. The tower has 109,5 meters of height and it is the only Brazilian telephony tower with a observatory open for visitors. From the observatory you can have a spectacular 360º panoramic view of Curitiba. The telephone museum tells the history of the telephony is very interesting and also attracts lots of visitors to the tower. Great place to visit in Curitiba!

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Basil Telecom/Oi's Panomic Tower - Curitiba, Brazil

14. Bosque Alemão | German Woods

A tribute to the German immigrants, the German Woods or Bosque Alemão covers an area of 38,000 sq m and it is a delight for children, who particularly enjoy the Hansel and Gretel House and the Philosopher’s Tower. From there you can get a fantastic view of Curitiba. The German Woods also house a wooden neogothic church, dating back to 1933, with a concert hall aptly called Bach’s Oratorium. The park has other attractions that include a library for children and a German Poetry Square with a replica of an old German building called the Casa Mil.

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German Woods - Curitiba, Brazil

15.  Bosque do Papa | Pope Woods

One of the most important Curitiba parks, Bosque do Papa or Pope Woods is a beautiful park to stroll and relax in Curitiba! The park was created in honor to Pope John Paul II and to the great Polish community in Curitiba and it bases the Polish Immigration Memorial. There are seven original wood houses in the center of the forest illustrates the architecture and way of living of the Polish immigrants of Curitiba. Besides a statue of Pope John Paul II, the park has also a craft store, Polish coffee shop (delicious cakes!), Polish houses and still offers a vast green and arborous area, trails, playground and bike lanes.

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Pope Woods - Curitiba, Brazil

16. Praça Tiradentes | Tiradentes Square

Tiradentes Square is the oldest one in town! It is considered the point where Curitiba was born and started its development. This famous square was remodelled many times over the years, but since its last reformulation in 2008  partially recovered its history, renewing its walks and benches. A new glass floor gave an extra charm to the square!

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Tiradentes Square - Curitiba, Brazil

17. Passeio Público

Passeio Público was the first public park created in Curitiba, on May 2nd of 1886. Its a great ileisure area containing lakes, bridges, small and a big green area in the middle of the city. The park also houses many especies of birds and monkeys.  Its gate is a copy of the Paris Dog Cemetery gate and give even more charm and beauty to the park. Great place to see and stroll in Curitiba!

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Passeio Público - Curitiba, Brazil

18. Transporte Público de Curitiba | Curitiba’s Public Transportation System

Curitiba developed a non subsidized, private owned, public transport system called BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) that today is a model internationally recognized. Insightful, long term planning with several innovative solutions has provided the citizens with an effective system that gives priority to public instead of private transport. Besides being model in public transportation and urban planning, Curitiba is also considered the ecologic capital of Brazil.

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Curitiba's Public Transportation System

19. Universidade Livre do Meio Ambiente

In the middle of the green Bosque Zaninelly, the criation of the Free University on the Environment or Universidade Livre do Meio Ambiente – UNILIVRE made Curitiba to be recognized as the first city in the world to have a special place for studies and wide dissemination of environmental and ecological knowledge to the public. The architectonic project of the university is VERY interesting!!!

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UNILIVRE - Curitiba, Brazil

20. Teatro Paiol | Paiol Theater

Built in 1906, the old  gunpowder storeroom of Curitiba was transformed into a charming theater with capacity for 225 people. The Paiol Theater was inaugurated and honored for Toquinho and Vinícius of Moraes, in 1971, with the music “Paiol de Pólvora”.

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Paiol Theater - Curitiba, Brazil

Click here for further information about these tourist attractions! If you are coming to Curitiba, we suggest you to contact whl.travel’s local connection in Curitiba, a local tour operator and accommodation provider commited with sustainable tourism. Check out their Curitiba touristic portal in English

We would love to hear about your experience in Curitiba ! Share with us! Please leave a comment 🙂

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The Exciting Train Tour from Curitiba to Morretes and Paranaguá

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The exciting train tour from Curitiba to Morretes crosses the Atlantic rainforest most preserved area in Brazil. Gorgeous!

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

The train tour from Curitiba to Morretes and Paranaguá that crosses the Serra do Mar is a great tour option for you in the great brazilian state of Paraná, southern Brazil. Once visiting Paraná, you cannot leave without taking this traditional, famous and breathtaking Train Tour from Curitiba to Morretes or Train Tour from Curitiba to Paranagua. The train leaves Curitiba, crosses Serra do Mar (the most preserved area of the brazilian Atlantic rainforest) and ends at the historical cities of Morretes or Paranagua (departures to Paranaguá only on Sundays).

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Beautiful landscapes during the Curitiba train tour to Morretes...

The train tour from Curitiba to Morretes or Paranaguá lasts about 3-4 hours and among its 110 kilomeeters of railway line extension you get to see amazing landscapes, rich animal and vegetation biodiversity, spectacular bends, canyons and gorges, waterfalls and a lot more.

Also, during the trip the train passes trough 14 tunnels, 30 bridges, beyond mountains and viaducts. Prominence for the Viaduto do Carvalho, suspended on five masonry pillars in the hillside of the rock, getting the sensation to be flying. Véu da Noiva, a 70 meters waterfall from Rio Ipiranga is another amazing sightseeing.

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The train passes over 30 bridges...

Getting out in Morretes you may be received by the women association of the city selling products made of  bananas and ginger (typical Morretes fruit and root) like candies, cookies, cachaças or pingas, natural flavored chips, etc. Very yummy!!!

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Barreado, typical dish of Paraná!

After the tour, you can stroll and visit other tourist attractions in the historical cities of Morretes and Paranagua. Eating the delicious Barreado for lunch is also a must do! Barreado, a typical dish of the Paraná State, Brazil, is a slow-cooked meat stew prepared in a clay pot whose lid is sealed with a sort of clay made from wheat or cassava flour, hence the name (which means, literally, “muddied”). For more information read the post “Barreado: The Famous Typical Dish of Paraná State!”.

The train has different wagons categories and each class has a different fare.

Classe Econômica/Coach Class: No service

Classe Turística/Touristic Class: Departures at 8h15 daily to Morretes (only on Sundays to Paranaguá); Portuguese speaking guide on board; snacks included. [Buy it online now!!!]

Classe Executiva/Business Class: Wide-windows; bilingual guide (Portuguese/English speaking); drinks and snacks included. [Buy it online now!!!]

Litorina: DOES NOT OPERATE IN PARANÁ ANYMORE!!!

Litorina Luxo: Departures only on weekends and holidays at 9h15; Leather and velvet couches/sofas; bar inside the car; 1st class catering; landscape live transmission in LCD screen; 1st luxury train in Brazil.

More than 100.000 people embark per year in this exciting adventure. The train departure from the Railway Station of Curitiba (Address: Avenida Presidente Afonso Camargo, 330).

Special Paraná Turismo & Eventos, Agência de Turismo Receptivo em Curitiba, Curitiba, Receptivo,If you need any assistance and want to make arrangements for your trip with a local incoming/receptive travel agency, we suggest you to contact:  Special Paraná Turismo & Eventoswww.specialparana.com – (41)3232-1314 (Portuguese, English, German, Spanish and French spoken).

– Take a look and book another train tour options:

Curitiba City Tour & Train Tour

Train tour to Morretes and rafting in Antonina

Train Tour to Morretes and River Fun

Train, Morretes and Sebuí Reserve

Please, share your experiences in this your with us! We love to hear the feedback and also, your information and opinion about the tour is very precious for us and other travellers. Thank you very much!!!

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Curitiba is the first Brazilian city to win the Sustainable Transport Award

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Beto Richa, the mayor of Curitiba received in Washington the Sustainable Transport Award 2010

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

The mayor of Curitiba, Beto Richa received on Tuesday night (12th) in Washington the Sustainable Transport Award 2010 for the implantation of the Linha Verde (Green Line). It is the first time that a Brazilian city wins this award from the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP).

“More than an incentive, this recognition extends our responsibilities with the construction of a sustainable society, question that will not be equated without a public transport system characterized for the excellence of its quality” said Richa in his gratefulness speech.

The Sustainable Transport Award, is annually offered to the best public transport projects of the world. It is organized by the United States ITDP and a commission composed of more eight international institutions: the ONU Regional Development Center; Environmental Defense Fund; Transportation Research Board Committee on Transportation in Developing Countries; Clean Air Initiatives for Asia; Clean Air Initiatives for Africa; GTZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit); EMBARQ (The World Resources Institute Center for Sustainable Transport) and International Association of Public Transport (UITP).

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The Linha Verde (Green Line), Curitiba - Brazil

“The awarding crown the hard work of some generations of the city and its citizens in the area of urban transport and now the Green Line is a new impulse”, said Richa. “This international recognition proves one more time why Curitiba is the world-wide reference in public transportation and innovative urban solutions.”

The mayor said that the permanent modernization of the public transport continues being a basic commitment in Curitiba and the adoption of new technologies will also extend and improve even more the public transport. “All this without forgetting the concepts associated to public transport, sustainability and life quality.

“With the Green Line, Curitiba continues the tradition of sustainable transport. Curitiba is one of the first and better examples of efficient and plain urban transport focused in the environmental sustainability” said Enrique Penalosa, president of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy.

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The Linha Verde at night!

“The removal of the old BR-116 highway was a dream for the curitibanos and was cogitated by visionary urban planners already in the 60’s” affirmed Beto Richa. “The Green Line is a reality into the city development and the advance of Curitiba’s public transport system. ”

“The Linha Verde impressed the members of the committee with a really modern transport corridor set up  with traffic lanes, ciclovias, sidewalk and parking, forming a complete avenue”, said Enrique Penalosa, ex-mayor of Bogota that also won the Sustainable Transport Award in 2005.

Curitiba launched the innovation in the public transport. Everyone recognized that the Curitiba city deserved the nomination and the prize” said Kathryn Phillips, specialist in transport politics of the Environmental Defense Fund, in Sacramento, California.

The other nominees cities announced to run for the Sustainable Transport Award 2010 are Ahmedabad (India), Johannesburg (South Africa), Cali (Colombia)and Guadalajara (Mexico). All of them were also awarded for its projects inspired by the exclusive Curitiba’s transport system world-wide known as BRT (Bus of Fast Transit). Click here to see their projects, its strengths and weaknesses.

“Three (Cali, Curitiba and Guadalajara) out of five nominee cities announced are important cities of Latin America, reaffirming the leadership adopted for this region in developing cleaner and more efficient transports systems”, said Sergio Sanchez, executive director of the Clean Air Institute. “These examples must stimulate other places and cities of Latin America to continue constructing more competitive cities, at the same time improving the air quality and reducing gas emission.”

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Linha Verde - The project won the Sustainable Transport Award 2010

The Green Line is the sixth transport corridor of Curitiba and its construction began in 2007. It was implanted in the old BR-116 and transformed into a complete and great traffic area.  Besides ten traffic lanes, the avenue has exclusive BRT (Bus Rapid Transport) lanes, fast lanes, access lanes, parking lanes, bike lanes, pedestrian lanes, sidewalk and a leisure area is being built.

The Green Line allowed the implantation of new bus lines that connects some suburb areas to downtown faster .The first one to be created was Pinheirinho-Centro, reduced  in 17% in the trip time. The line has also the first buses in Latin America to use biodiesel, made from soy base. For more information about it check the post “The First 100% Biodiesel Buses in Latin America Starts to Circulate in Curitiba!”.

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Check out the great tour "Curitiba like locals: Urban Planing"

If you are coming to Curitiba and want to experience and see how the Linha Verde (Green Line) works, check out the tour “Curitiba like locals: Urban Planning”.

Citations:

http://thecityfix.com/2010-sustainable-transport-awards-nominees-announced/

http://www.fabiocampana.com.br/2010/01/richa-recebeu-em-washington-premio-pela-linha-verde/ – Translated by Guilherme Mendes Thomaz

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History and Leisure in Antonina, Paraná – Brazil

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

The city of Antonina, in the Paraná Coast, is famous for its street carnival and its historical architecture, with very old houses, squares, monuments and old churches. In Antonina you will also be able to appreciate the rich local cuisine with typical foods and dishes of the region. Beyond the traditional Barreado (the most famous typical dish of Paraná coast), shrimps, crabs and other sea food can be found in the Municipal Market, that was restored by the Paraná Government in the end of 2007.

The Market is one of the more important tourist attractions of the city, and is located in the Paranaguá bay. The state have spent around R$ 366 thousand in investments to revitalizate the area. The market counts with restaurants, souvenir and handcraft stores, ice cream, snack bar, travel agency and bathrooms for special necessities.

The space still contemplates the traditional fish market. The Antonina’s fish market was inaugurated in 2009 to take care of local fishing with a properly and hygienic space. The pier is also being reformed and it will be concluded soon.

All this makes Antonina a great option of leisure and entertainment in the region, a place of meeting where tourists and locals can exchange experiences and get to know a little more about the history and culture of Paraná tasting and experiencing the good food, natural beauties and tourist attractions of the region.

For more general and tourist information about Antonina you can take a look at www.morretes-antonina.com.br !!!!

Antonina hotels

Antonina tours and activities

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Weather in Antonina

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A Green City: Parks in Curitiba, Brazil

This post was first published on the City Parks Blog – http://cityparksblog.org

One of the most well regarded world cities in terms of urban planning is Curitiba, Brazil — a place known for its efficient and innovative bus rapid transit system. But the city is also known for its parks, in particular using them to increase quality of life and act as green infrastructure to protect against floods.

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Tanguá Park, Curitiba

The city has about 50 square meters of parkland per person (i.e. 12 acres per 1000), most of which were created in the last 30 years under the direction of forward-looking urban planner/former mayor Jaime Lerner. The protected land is complemented by compact housing, as the city of 1.5 million has a population density of 10,750 per square mile (which is around the same as Philadelphia or Washington, D.C.).

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Ukranian Memorial - Tingui Park

Roughly 21 million square meters (5,190 acres) are linear parks along rivers and streams that act as buffers between flood-prone rivers and the city. Legislation set aside certain low-lying areas and river basins as special protection and management areas. The city also used a loan to purchase land at a number of critical sites around the city. Engineers built small damns and created new lakes that act as holding basins when flooding occurs.

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Botanical Garden

In effect, these green spaces are giant stormwater facilities, with the lakes as central features. If rains are heavy, the lake rises over the surrounding parks. And Lerner and parks director Hitochi Nakamura made sure to connect places to one another (as mentioned in the below linked video). Together they helped create over 90 miles of new trails within the city, located in southern Brazil about 250 miles southwest of São Paulo.

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Barigui Park

Much has been done to document what’s occurred in Curitiba. A nice 15-minute video (YouTube) by Journeyman Productions gives a good overview, and includes interviews with both Lerner and Nakamura. (The segment on parks starts just after the seven-minute mark.) Another good resource on all of the planning efforts and problems that persist in the city is the book, Urban Renewal, Municipal Revitalization: the Case of Curitiba Brazil.

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“Innovative Solutions for Public Transport; Curitiba, Brazil” By Lars Friberg

Great article written by Lars Friberg, from the Uppsala University (Sweden)

ABSTRACT:

Curitiba, capital of the Brazilian state Paraná 400km south east of São Paulo has over the last 30 years developed a non subsidiside, private owned, public transport system. Today it stands as a model recognized internationally. In sightful, long term planning with several innovative solutions has provided the citizens with an effective system that gives priority to public instead of private transport. It has the highest user rates of all state Brazilian capitals, 75% of all weekday commuters. All this during an unprecedented city growth.

Click here to read the article!

Curitiba's public transportation system

Curitiba's public transportation system

Also, check out the tour “Curitiba like locals: Urban Planing”, a  private tour where you can get the chance to see how locals use the great Curitibas’s public transportation system  and also get more information about how Curitiba developed it in the last decades. Well recomended!

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Surprise Yourself in Curitiba, Brazil

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

Thinking about Brazil, Curitiba is not the first thing that comes in mind. The city has been surprising travelers from all over the world and is becoming popular over the years. Once in Brazil you can’t leave without going to Curitiba.

Ilha do Mel Farol

Ilha do Mel's light house

Curitiba is the capital city of Parana State, located 1 hour and 20 minutes from Rio de Janeiro and only 30 minutes from São Paulo by plane. The city is considered one of the best places to live in Brazil because of its great infrastructure. Doesn’t matter what your looking for, Curitiba is an awesome city for everyone and has a lot of interesting things to do/see like famous parks, museums, night clubs, restaurants, bars, soccer stadiums, squares, buildings, etc. There are also a lot of touristic attractions around the city like famous islands (Ilha do Mel and Ilha de Superagui), historic cities like Morretes, Antonina, Castro, etc.

First of all, Curitiba has a really fun and exciting nightlife, with plenty options of bars, nightclubs, pubs where the partying doesn’t stop until 5 or 6 in the morning. This added to the Brazilian partying and entertainer spirit, guarantee the night. Curitiba has also great options of restaurants that serve really good food and most of them are cheap. Besides the Brazilian stake houses as known as “Churrascarias” and typical Brazilian restaurants, the gastronomy in Curitiba is a synthesis of habits and cultures. Italian, Arabs, Poles, Germans, Portuguese, Japanese among many other, brought their habits, traditions and culinary to the city. However, since you’re in Brazil you must prove the delicious local culinary.

logo curitiba cidade sede fifa world cup 2014The city has three soccer teams. Atlético Paranaense plays the 1st division of the Brazilian Championship and Coritiba and Paraná play on the 2nd division. Watching soccer games is a really interesting and exciting experience in Curitiba, especially at Atlético’s stadium called “Arena da Baixada”. The stadium was selected to be one of the headquarters stadiums for the FIFA World Cup in 2014. At the stadiums you can feel the energy and passion that the Brazilians have for soccer and their teams.

Curitiba has so many tourist attractions. However, the highlights are Jardim Botânico (Botanical Garden), the handcrafts market at Largo da Ordem, Oscar Niemeyer MuseumÓpera de Arame (Wire Opera House), Largo da Ordem (Old town), Tanguá Park, Barigui Park, Brasil Telecom/OI’s Tower, Passeio Público and the historical building of the Federal University of Paraná.

JardimnBotanico Curitiba Botanical Garden

The Jardim Botânico (Botanical Garden of Curitiba) is modeled like the French Gardens is a great place to go stroll and relax. The parks are also a great option for that and locals enjoy a lot the green areas of Curitiba .

Feirinha do Largo da OrdemThe Feirinha do Largo da Ordem (handcrafts market) happens every Sunday at Largo da Ordem. At the market you can find local handcrafts and all kinds of food. Most tourists really like the fresh pastéis, caldo-de-cana (sugar cane juice), bolinho de bacalhau.

Museu Oscar Niemeyer - Oscar Niemeyer MuseumThere are always exhibitions of famous artists at the Oscar Niemeyer Museum . The museum was drawn by the famous Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer and it’s architecture impress everyone that pass by the local. On the field behind the museum, on Saturday the kids practice football (yes…American footbal, NOT soccer) and on Sunday a lot of people go to the field to play with their dogs.

Visit the Torre da OI/Brasil Telecom is worthwhile. The tower has more than 100 meters , where you can have an amazing panoramic view of Curitiba.

UFPR - Universidade Federal do Paraná

At Praça Santos Andrade, located in downtown you can check the Teatro Guaíra and the beautiful building of the Federal University of Paraná , the first university in Brazil.

The Tourism Line in Curitiba is a great option for tourists. For R$20.00, the bus line pass by the main tourist attractions in Curitiba and gives you the option to stop off at three points of your choice. The buses circulate every 30 minutes, in an approximately 45 km trip that takes around 2.5 hours to complete.
Train_tour_Litorina_Curitiba_Morretes

The famous Litorina train tour from Curitiba to Morretes...

Once in Curitiba , the train tour to Morretes becomes a “must do”. The construction of the railroad in 1880 was one of the big challenges of that time for engineers. The track starts in Curitiba at 934 m above the sea and goes until Morretes just a few meters above sea level. It is one of the most impressive train rides of the world because of the tropical vegetation of the Atlantic Rain Forest , breathtaking bridges, turns and gorgeous landscapes.

This is just a really short description about Curitiba. For more information web sites like Descubra Curitiba and Viaje Curitiba are really helpful to tourists, however, they are in Portuguese. For english speakers  here you can find general and complete information in english about Curitiba and surrounding areas.

From:  Traveler article on Trip Advisor.

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Curitiba Launches Six New Tours!

By Guilherme Mendes Thomaz@guimendesthomaz

Curitiba has definitively confirmed itself as a important tourist region and city, with options for everyone. The Núcleo de Turismo Receptivo (Receptive Tourism Nucleus) of the city, organized by the Sebrae/PR in partnership with the Tourism Institute of Curitiba, launched six new specific tours in the capital of Paraná state, Brazil.

In agreement with the Sebrae/PR consultant and manager of the tourism project, Patricia Albanez, everyone that is direct and indirectly involved with the tourism in Curitiba need to know about these new products. “They are differentiated and attractive scripts, that privilege tourism attractions that are barely awarded in the traditional tourist packages of Curitiba. Moreover, these new tours are relatively fast and can be added in the routine of people who come to Curitiba for business, work, events or leisure.”

Innovative Tourism

Patrician Albanez affirms that the reason of creating and divulging these innovative tours in Curitiba aim to provides the tourist the “experience economy”, where tourists can get the chance to live the city deeply and see it in different forms. The capital of Paraná also becomes a highlight touristic city in southern Brazil.

“The Núcleo de Turismo Receptivo’s project exists since last year and its main objective is to organize and foment the receptive travel agencies of the city, assisting them on businesses diversification and qualification. The Nucleo is composed by 9 specialized companies that are innovating the tourism activity in the city, demonstrating a great associativism “, evaluate the consultant.

THE NEW TOURS IN CURITIBA:

“Caminhando por Curitiba – Curitiba Walking Tour” Special Paraná Turismo & Eventos
This tour is basically a fun and exciting stroll around Curitiba downtown to learn the history and culture of Curitiba. In a approximately 5 kilometers walk will take the tourist to streets and tourist attractions, accompanied by anecdotes and curiosities of the last 350 years of the city. You will also get to see many awesome images of the old Curitiba and see what the city looked like hundreds of years ago.

Visited places:
– Tiradentes Square (Cathedral)
– Largo da Ordem (Ordem Church, Rosario Church, Flores Square)
– Belvedere and São Francisco Ruins
– Solar do Barão
– 19 de dezembro Square
– Arab Memorial
– Passeio Público
– Santos Andrade Square (Teatro Guaíra and University)
– Eufrásio Correia Square (old Train Station)
– Barão do Rio Branco Street
– Marechal Deodoro Street
– Zacarias Square
– Boca Maldita and Osório Square
– Pedestrian area
– Paço da Liberdade

Included in the price:
– Local guide (Portuguese, English, German, French and Italian available)
– Bus ticket

Departure time: Monday trough Saturday (9h and 14h) – between 2 and 10 participants.

BOOK “CURITIBA WALKING TOUR” ONLINE NOW!

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“De Bar em Bar – From Bar to Bar” – MMS Turismo
This tour is perfect and made specially for visitors that loves to make new friendships and wants to know and experience the best bars of Curitiba. In this tour you will go to three or four bars in the same night, guaranteed sit in one of the best tables, beyond an amused and pleasant night. Duration: 4 hours.

Departure time: Monday trough Sunday at 20h.

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Passeio de Compras em Curitiba – Shopping in Curitiba” – ONETUR
This tour will take to go shopping in Curitiba. You will visit malls, shops, outlets and commercial centers of Curitiba, where you can buy many things like clothes of famous national and internationally brands, artisan clothes, mineral rocks, souvenirs, etc.

Duration: 3 – 4 hours
Departure time: Monday trough Friday at 14h.

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Caminhos da Arte Paranaense Paranaense Art Road” – Sermann Turismo
In this tour you will walk around 5 kilometers in approximately 4 hours stroll by the heart of the city to see art works of the city made by the most famous artists Paraná state like Poty Lazzarotto, João Turin, Oscar Niemeyer, etc. This tour will show you the essence of the local art, well known for its multiple languages as painting, sculpture, mosaic, architecture and design.

Departure time: Tuesday trough Saturday at 9h.

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“Curitiba Multicultural” – BWT
Curitiba is fruit of the immigrants’ efforts that, in the XIX century, had chosen the city as its safe port. In a 3 hours stroll you will get to see multiple ethnic marks and the most cultural beauties of the city like the Arab Memorial, Muslim Mosque, Japanese Memorial, Pope Woods, German Woods, the famous Italian neighborhood Santa Felicidade and Tingui Park.

Departure time: Daily (9h and 14h) – minimum of two participants.

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“Esporte Tur em Curitiba – Sport Tur in Curitiba” – Kallisté Turismo
This tour is a great option for visitors who appreciates sports.  Trough a guided visit, this tour will take you at soccer stadiums, the Autódromo Internacional de Curitiba and skate parks of Curitiba.

Duration: 3h30 (approximately)
Departure time: Tuesdays and Fridays – minimum of two participants.

Click here to check other tours in Curitiba and surrounding areas!

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“Curitiba: A green miracle in a developing country” By Daniela Ochoa Gonzalez

Developed and developing nations are being challenged more than ever to provide a good quality of life for their inhabitants while coping with population growth. Curitiba, the most environmentally friendly city in Brazil, is flourishing by meeting these needs. Through embracing sustainable development, it has become an important reference among these communities in terms of planning, public policies, and successful strategy implementation towards environmental sustainability. With 1.7 million residents, Curitiba has grown through calm, harmonic urban solutions that respect individuals and cultures and preserve the environment while sustaining its cosmopolitan cultural identity. This setting makes Curitiba an example for the rest of the world.

How Curitiba got there

Most of the policies that transformed Curitiba into a model of environmental sustainability were initiated by Jaime Lerner, Mayor of Curitiba during Brazil’s military regime in the late 1980s. He and a working team designed and implemented the urban master plan, which included integrated initiatives of green areas, waste recycling, and transportation projects. Today, the public transport system accommodates 2 million passengers daily and is the main source of transportation for 54 percent of the city. Most Curitiba citizens embrace the city’s commitment to environmental responsibility as part of their collective subconscious. The exhaustive marketing and educational campaigns that were carried out during the military regime have been maintained and reinforced during the democratic mandates that have followed. Citizens have incorporated environmental awareness as part of their lifestyle.

Curitiba started its green transformation with the development of an integrated plan for basic sanitation and environmental preservation. When in the early 1970s the United Nations declared that every urban inhabitant should have a minimum of twelve square meters of green area, Curitiba had only a half-square meter per inhabitant. The city implemented various strategic changes, and today the green area per inhabitant is fifty-one square meters. Through land expropriation, the city government offered new sport and leisure spaces while preventing illegal land occupation by those without explicit right to the property. They also created ponds and lakes by containing rainwater at a cost fifty times less than a typical channel network.

 These green areas are spread among thirty forests and parks that have become highly valued meeting points for the population. Several of them are allusive to important local history, honoring the arrival of immigrants and the native habitants, the Tingui Indians. Because immigration contributes to the multicultural accent and development of the region, Curitiba’s green spaces represent its culture with free public libraries of various languages and open spaces that host annual cultural and gastronomic celebrations. The authoritarian government, which reigned from 1964 to 1985, sustained Lerner’s foresight, but the successes of his administration ultimately led to his democratic reelection.

Additional projects improved the strategic use of the extensive green areas in an inclusive way. UNILIVRE, the free university for the environment, is the first of its kind in the Americas. UNILIVRE holds workshops for environmental awareness and education for people of all ages, backgrounds and socioeconomic conditions.

Keeping it clean through sustainable waste management

 A few of Curitiba’s most notable successes are its solid waste management and recycling programs. The city established an industrial landfill through a public-private partnership near the assigned industrial development area. At the landfill site, they neutralize toxic waste (such as batteries) and reuse other materials for cement production. Additionally, they collect and process cooking oil to be reused for soaps and fuel. Finally, they introduced a particular process for clinical and hospital waste to be sterilized before being sent to the organic landfills.

 Curitiba was the first city in the country to practice selective garbage collection by separating organic from inorganic waste. The municipal service collects an average of 1200 tons of organic waste and thirty tons of recyclable materials daily, and independent collectors gather an additional forty-five tons of recyclables daily. Through “Cambio Verde” (green exchange program) another thirteen-and-a-half tons are exchanged. This program exchanges four kilograms of recyclable material for one kilogram of food at over eighty-eight points in the city twice a week.

Recyclables are a profitable source of income not just for the lowest quintile of the local society, but also for the other stakeholders in the recycling system. The majority of the collected materials are donated to the Pro-Citizenship Institute (Instituto Pro Cidadania de Curitiba, or IPCC), a local NGO. IPPC separates, compacts, and sells the material to surrounding recycling factories, giving a source of income to over sixty employees.

Another group that benefits from municipal assistance with recyclable material are the “ecociudadanas” cooperatives. The city provides groups of twenty to twenty-five citizens, mostly women, with a physical space to keep, select, compress and sell the recyclable materials they collect. This system allows them able to double and sometimes triple their regular income while also obtaining healthcare, childcare, and education access for them and their children. As of July 2008 nine ecociudadano cooperative groups existed, and given their successes, the local government is continuously opening more.

Application to other cities

The most likely obstacles that other local governments will face while trying to integrate these policies in their municipalities are budget restrictions. Surprisingly, the expenses for such a progressive system are relatively limited. In 2006, expenditures for the Environmental Department represented just 1.4 percent of Curitiba’s annual budget. However, the annual expenditures for urban development and education were 39.8 percent and 18 percent of the annual budget for Curitiba, respectively. Sustainable planning requires a willingness to invest and cooperate with the private sector, and Curitiba demonstrates how this commitment efficiently promotes environmental preservation.

Curitiba is far from being an ecologic sanctuary, but the “green” attitude of Curitibans has taken them in a positive direction and has transformed the city into an important reference worldwide, inviting others to be creative and value citizens’ input as a priority for environmental conservation. Curitiba, along with other cities such as Portland, OR (USA), Geneva (Switzerland) and many others as in Germany and Sweden, is a living model for other cities that want to implement sustainable living policies. As a blossoming city in a developing country, Curitiba is an inspiration for other cities in this context to overcome economic resource constrains and address the same sustainable challenges.

Daniela Ochoa Gonzalez is a 2009 MPA Candidate in CIPA concentrating in environmental policy.

Check out the tour “Curitiba like locals: Urban Planing”, a  private tour where visitors can have the chance to see how locals use the great Curitibas’s public transportation system  and also get more information how Curitiba developed it in the last decades. Well recomended!

Click here to book this tour online! Check other Curitiba tours at www.curitiba-travel.com.br

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