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Downtown Embu das Artes.

Embu das Artes is a city in the Grande São Paulo, São Paulo state. "Embu," as it is often referred to, is also knowns as Land of the Arts or, simply, Embu of the Arts. The name appeared in the 1960s, with a strong movement characterized by the primitive art and the influence of the hippie culture in the city. Painters, artists, and artesoes have elected the city as the landmark of the Brazilian culture.


The city of Embu began from the M'Boy indigenous settlement, founded by Jesuits between 1555-1559. The Nossa Senhora do Rosário church, still present in the city, was constructed in the second half of the 17th century.

The peaceful town started to change in 1920, when the painter Cássio M'Boy, a lover of the caipira lifestyle, arrived in Embu. Cássio earned an international award in Paris in 1939, and afterwards, Embu started receiving an influx of artists, like Assis, Sakai, Gama, Solano Trindade and Ana Moysés.

At the end of the 1960s, hippies started the tradition of the Open Arts Fair in the city, that persists in the weekends and holidays to this day. In 2011, Embu changed its name to Embu das Artes.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Embu das Artes is a 40-min drive from downtown São Paulo, approximately 15 miles. Rodovia Regis Bittencourt (BR-116) leaves São Paulo in the direction of Curitiba, as you pass Taboão da Serra then Itapecerica da Serra. It can be easily accessed by taking Av. Francisco Morato, in São Paulo, and following the signs to Taboão da Serra.

By bus[edit]

Embu das Artes can also be accessed from São Paulo by metropolitan buses (EMTU), that depart from some metro stations including Tietê, Anhangabaú and Capão Redondo. These buses are cheap (most cost R$3-4) but not very practical, as some take longer than 2 hours to get to Embu.

Get around[edit]

The area of interest to a visitor is the city center, which can be easily explored on foot.


Conjunto Jesuítico Nossa Senhora do Rosário
  • [formerly dead link] Feira de Arte e Artesanato (Arts and Handcrafts Fair), Centro, +55 11 4704-6565, +55 11 4781-5971. Sa Su holidays 08:00-18:00. Occupying all the central area of the city, the traditional open air fair, that happens since 1969, invites the visitor on a journey to the Brazilian colonial period. The 462 expositors are divided in the sections of plastic arts, ornamental artes, plants and typical foods. Undoubtedly the highlight of a visit to Embu das Artes.
  • Capela de Santa Cruz, Rua Rebolo Gonzáles, 185, Vila Cercado Grande, +55 11 4704-6565, +55 11 4781-5971. Small chapel designed by the artist Helaine Malca and decorated by José Luiz Alemãn.
  • [formerly dead link] Capela São Lazaro, Between Rua da Matriz and Rua Nossa Sra. do Rosário, +55 11 4704-6565, +55 11 4781-5971. Sa Su holidays 09:00-17:00. Colonial-style chapel constructed in 1934, containing an image of Saint Lazarus made by the city's legendary artist Cássio M'Boy, and the statue of Christ crafted by Zé Santeiro.
  • [formerly dead link] Conjunto Jesuítico Nossa Senhora do Rosário, Largo dos Jesuítas, 67 – Centro, +55 11 4704-2654. Tu-Su 09:00-12:00, 13:00-17:00. A National Heritage Site, the 17th-century construction is composed by the Nossa Senhora do Rosário church and an old Jesuit residence, which is now a sacred art museum containing religious sculptures from the 17th-19th centuries. free to R$ 3.
  • [formerly dead link] Memorial Sakai, Rua Rebolo Gonzáles, 185, Vila Cercado Grande, +55 11 4241-5993. Tu-Su 09:00-17:00. Museum of art dedicated to the Japanese origin farmer and artist Tadakiyo Sakai, considered as one of the greatest terracotta sculptors of Brazil. free.
  • Parque do Lago Francisco Rizzo, Rua Alberto Giosa, 300, +55 11 4781-4953. 08:00-17:00. Nice public park with a large lake, for a relaxing stroll after shopping in the city center.


Works of art and handcrafts produced by local artists/artesans can be bought both at the open air fair and at shops in the Center. In the shops you can also buy handmade furniture and antiquities.


Embu das Artes' speciality dish is the leitão à pururuca, a typical Caipira dish consisting of roasted piglet with dried and fried skin. The city center offers plenty of options of snackbars and restaurants.

  • Food Court, Avenida Elias Yazbek, 1401, Praça da Lagoa. Tu-Th 08:00-19:00, F-Su 08:00-22:00. An open fair food court equipped with tables and chairs, where you can prove snacks and local food in 24 kiosks.
  • [dead link] Cabana Embu, Largo 21 de Abril, 259 - Centro, +55 11 4704-2749. A caipira restaurant, one of the most traditional of Embu das Artes. Its speciality is the leitão à pururuca.
  • [dead link] Tutu's Restaurante, Largo 21 de Abril, 260 - Centro, +55 11 4781-0655. Tu-F 11:00-16:00, Sa Su 11:00-18:00. Another traditional caipira restaurant specialized in leitão à pururuca.
  • [dead link] O Garimpo Restaurante, Rua da Matriz, 136 - Centro, +55 11 4785 1400. 11:30-last customer. Restaurant with mixed Brazilian and international food.
  • Os Girassóis, Largo dos Jesuítas, 169 - Centro, +55 11 4781-6671. Tu-F 09:30-17:00, Sa Su 09:30-18:00. Restaurant that serves leitão à pururuca, einsbein (German dish) and others. All-you-can-eat pasta on Sundays.


  • [dead link] O Garimpo, Rua da Matriz, 136 - Centro, +55 11 4785 1400. Bar and club with four different environments, playing an eclectic selection of music. Live shows during the evening.


Go next[edit]

Routes through Embu das Artes
CuritibaItapecerica da Serra  S BR-116.png N  Taboão da SerraSão Paulo

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