Porto Alegre Overview



Porto Alegre is the capital and largest city of the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul, with a population of more than 1.5 million. It is the southernmost state capital in the country, residing at the confluence of five different rivers at the mouth of the Baia de Guiaba. The city was founded in 1772 by a group of immigrants from the Portuguese city of Azores and has since become one of the most diverse areas in Latin America. The 19th century brought immigrants from numerous European countries, including Portugal, Germany, Poland, Italy and Spain, and in later years, the city developed strong Jewish, Arab and Afro-Brazilian contingents. The vast majority of the current populace is of European descent.

The city rose to economic prominence with the help of the manufacturing, produce and transport industries that developed due to the area's geography. Porto Alegre rests at the junction of five different rivers, making it a perfect port city. It will also play host to some international soccer competitions during the upcoming 2014 FIFA World Cup that will take place throughout the months of June and July. Porto Alegre has a long-standing tradition of excellence in soccer, featuring two clubs, Sport Club Internacional and Gremio Foot-Ball Porto Alegrense, that both have won numerous national and international honors throughout their distinguished history. The Estadio Beira-Rio is the home of Sport Club Internacional, and soon to be the stadium that houses the international contests set to unfold in the near future.

Sightseeing and Culture



With such a diverse populace, Porto Alegre features a variety of different architectural styles and cultural attractions that visitors are sure to enjoy. This sprawling metropolis presents something for just about everyone within the borders of this community. Visitors should try to make the rounds and see all that the beautiful city of Porto Alegre has to offer.

Cathedral Metropolitana
This expansive 20th century cathedral is a cultural landmark in Porto Alegre, and sits atop a hill that divides downtown from a collection of prosperous neighborhoods clustered around Parque Farroupilha, the city's largest natural sanctuary. The structure was designed in a Neo Classical style and features a domed ceiling, breathtaking stained-glass windows and truly exquisite craftsmanship. The architectural detail is unparalleled by any other building in the city, and is most definitely worth an afternoon visit.

Gasometer
This building initially housed one of the city's largest power plants, which was owned and operated by the Electric Bond & Share Co., a U.S. company hoping to cash in on electricity management and electrical transport in Porto Alegre. After the structure was abandoned in 1970, it was rebranded as a spot for locals to engage in artistic endeavors. Today, the plant houses four art galleries and a theater that allow visitors to take in the spectacles of local artists and performers. This is a truly unique spot in the city and visitors should make a day trip here a high priority.

Porto Alegre Botanical Gardens
Nature enthusiasts will be happy to spend a day among the fragrant blossoms housed within the Porto Alegre Botanical Gardens. The gardens sprawl across more than 43 hectares between Cristiano Fischer and Salvador França avenues. They house more than 720 different plant species spread out into different areas of the park, including a germplasm bank, a seed bank, a sapling terrarium, and an assortment of nurseries filled with legions of bromeliads, orchids, succulent, vines and cacti, and a number of others.

Porto Alegre After Dark



After spending the day taking in all the impressive features of the city or cheering your national soccer squad to victory, you may be in need of a frosty beverage or cocktail. The city of Porto Alegre is home to a number of excellent clubs and bars that are sure to help you relax and enjoy a night out on the town. Whether you're simply looking for a quiet spot to sip on a pint, or an exotic dance venue to bust a move, you can be sure that Porto Alegre has you covered.

The Dirty Old Man Cocktail Pub
This quiet establishment presents a great atmosphere dedicated to the memory of the late great Bohemian writer Charles Bukowski. Soft lighting and an expansive drink menu make this a great spot to find seclusion in this bustling metropolis. Local patrons are sure to provide some friendly conversation or an opposing viewpoint in a philosophical debate, making this an excellent spot for those who fancy themselves to be intellectuals.

72 New York
If you're looking for some serious fun, make the 72 New York the first stop on the hit parade. This establishment is split between two separate venues: the club lounge and the pub bar, and both attract a young, hip crowd. The walls are covered in a mixture of eclectic street art and vibrant prints, and the expert staff will provide drinks and cuisine to meet your every craving. Local bands and DJs perform almost every night of the week, and keep the party going until the early hours of the morning.

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