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Curitiba

Curitiba

Known as the Ecological Capital of Brazil, Curitiba is one of the most prosperous and organized cities in Brazil. It is also a worldwide example in urban solutions, education, and environment.

 

A city of eclectic culture, Curitiba is strongly influenced by Italian, German, Polish, and Ukrainian immigrants, from which the majority of the  opulation is descended.

 

This is mainly observed in the city’s architecture, gastronomy, and religion. Curitiba has become world renowned for its innovative urban solutions, winning a UNESCO prize for its urban development. Its integrated transport planning is responsible for an effective infrastructure that makes public transport fast and convenient.

About Curitiba

Curitiba is the capital of the Brazilian state of Parana and has a population of 2 million people. Curitiba means ‘pine nut’ as there are so many pine nuts in the area. It has been said that it is the most desirable place to live in Brazil due to its high standard of living and excellent public transport system. It also has strict environmental policies with over two thirds of its garbage being recycled.

 

Curitiba was founded in the 17th century as a gold mining camp; it became the capital of the State of Paraná in 1854, and grew rapidly after 1940. Its 2 million people are a synthesis of several cultures of immigrants that arrived in the city during the 19th century and early 20th century.

 

There are over 30 parks and forests with complete infrastructure for recreation and sports practice. Afonso Pena International Airport offers worldwide travelers with a smooth and efficient access to Curitiba by air. With excellent transportation networks, the tourists visiting Curitiba can access Brazil’s art and entertainment centers swiftly and efficiently.

Curitiba at a glance

Curitiba is a city made for cars, but allows people to stroll on sidewalks and the main street turns eventually into a pedestrian-only street with plenty of shops and restaurants. The multiple parks in the city are a worthwhile stop whether you need to rest your legs, relax or go for a jog. When the sun sets the endless pubs and bars turn into a social playground, where it is easy to catch up with friends and to integrate into the Brazilian lifestyle. Food is served at any hour, so you never go hungry in this easygoing city. You can see the ethnic mix in Curitiba in the food; the Italian parts have their pizzas and pastas, sushi can be found in every corner and German beer in every other pub. Local delicacies like meat, sweet and savoury pastries and tapioca can be found in every restaurant and cornershop.

 

Curitiba is a lot colder than the average tourist would think, warm clothes is a must especially in the evenings and an umbrella is the main accessory on the streets. The weather still does not stand in the way of the activities the city offers. Whether you like shopping, grabbing a beer, art or nature, you will find your place in the city.

 

Curitiba is not only known for its urban planning, but also of being a cultural hub. Everywhere you go in the city you run into culture, through different cultural centers, museums, libraries, theatres, studios and exhibit rooms. In the city there is 150 sites for cultural events in 50 different places. The gardens and parks are also something you cannot help but seeing, the city provides a lot of green areas, whether you like to run, do capoeira, yoga or just sit and relax – there will be a park for you. The city hosts a theatre festival yearly, where the streets and cultural centers are filled with different performances all around town.

 

City highlights

At first sight Curitiba does not seem to offer too much for a visitor, but take a second look. The beautiful parks and green areas assure that a sunny day is enjoyed to its fullest. The Jardim Botanico, close to the center, is a must visit for anyone. For culture lovers the city offers plenty of choice. Curitiba is seen as Paraná’s cultural hub and there are several theaters and museums, not to mention the street art and architecture in the city.

 

Brazilians are big fans of shopping, so those of you who cannot get enough of stores, this is the place to be. Curitiba has several shopping centers, ranging in style and variety, assuring that there is something for every taste. Ranging from modern high-class malls to the Shopping Estacao, which is a former railway station turned into a shopping center, still breathing the old railway station vibe to all shoppers. If the malls are not your thing the city is filled with markets, the Sunday market in the Old Town is perfect for a sunday stroll with good food. Not to mention Rua das Flores, the pedestrian-only part of the main street which is filled with shops and cafés and plenty of benches for those who wish to sit and enjoy the busy life around them.

 

To assure you get to see the best attractions of Curitiba there is the Linha Turismo – Tourism Line. The bus is very convenient for anyone who wishes to see the parks furthest away without a big hassle. With its 25 stops around the city, a chance to jump on-and-off as you please, the bus truly is not a waste of money nor energy. The bus passes by the Panoramic Tower which gives you a splendid view of the city and the Ópera de Arame, which is a magnificent place, integrated with nature, among many other worthwhile sights. Even locals tend to use the Linha Turismo every now and then to catch the best sights of the city.

 

When Curitiba gets too small, there is always the train ride, Serra Verde Express, from Curitiba to Morretes. The slowly moving sightseeing train offers amazing views on the way of the Atlantic coast. The train ride is often described as a breathtaking experience and travellers are urged to take seats on the left side for the best views.

 

Weather

Curitiba is located on a 932-meter plateau region, 100 km (60 miles) from the sea and 500 km (300 miles) from São Paulo. The overall climatic condition of Curitiba is subtropical, with considerable humidity. The 900 meter tableland elevation capture considerable rainwater, offering the region a gentle winter and a warm and moist summer.

 

Spring in Curitiba occurs between September and November with a temperature ranging from 10°C (50°F) during the coldest nights to 24°C (75°F) on an average day. On the hottest days the temperature may rise close to 30°C (86°F), which can feel unbearable with the humid air. The summer starts usually in December and lasts until February. Summer in Curitiba is hot, moist and rainy. There are rain and thunderstorms almost every day, but the temperature remains in the mid 20°C (68°F), and can even rise to 30°C (86°F). The summer in Curitiba is too hot for rain jackets, but be sure to carry an umbrella with you wherever you go. The weather can change from sunny to rainy in a blink of an eye.

 

Autumn starts in March and continues until May, with a foggy and windy air. The temperature stays around 20°C (68°F) throughout March and April, but drops below 20°C (68°F) in May. The nights tend to get chilly, with the temperature dropping to 10°C (50°F). Winter is the driest season in Curitiba, lasting from June until August. The weather remains mild throughout the day with the temperature around 20°C (68°F). The nights get considerably cold, and the temperature can drop down all the way below 0°C (32°F), but is commonly around 5°C (41°F). Even during the driest season rain is common, so do not lose your umbrella for the winter.

 

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