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Hotels in Curitiba

Curitiba is the largest city in the South Region of Brazil and has a great reputation for cleanliness, safety, and organisation. The city has won awards for sustainability, and was given the title of Best Brazilian Big City to live in by the US edition of Reader’s Digest. Curitiba is a sprawling metropolis, with nine boroughs and almost two million residents.
Despite that, the city has a low crime rate and a lot of green space thanks to botanic gardens, plenty of parks, and tree lined boulevards. Curitiba is also home to the hardest marathon in Brazil, the International Ecological Marathon, which takes place during the height of the summer on a hilly course.

There’s plenty of interesting “bairros” (neighbourhoods) to explore in Curitiba, and the following destinations are well worth a look.

Centro

The downtown district of Curitiba is a hive of activity, with lots of shops, restaurants, banks and parks. The neighbourhood is mostly dedicated to recreational activity, and the young population of the bairro reflects that: most of Centro’s residents are aged 20 to 24. The centre’s attractions make it a popular tourist destination, so it’s not surprising that there are plenty of hotels located here. Browse the shops on the Rua das Flores, enjoy the nighlife in the historic quarter, and be sure to check out the Feira do Largo da Ordem: the Sunday morning flea market.

Sao Francisco

One of the oldest neighbourhoods in Curitiba, Sao Francisco is also one of the most interesting. There’s a heady mix of architecture, with art deco fountains sitting side by side with colonial mansions and modernist tower blocks. There’s a good range of hotels in Sao Francisco, from budget hostels to five star luxury hotels and everything in between. Sights to see include the Church of St Vincent de Paul, and the Praca de Garibaldi.

Agua Verde

When Italian immigrants first arrived in Coritiba in the 19th Century, this is where they settled. Although it’s still a mostly residential neighbourhood, there are plenty of top name hotels and a lot of interesting sights. Locals enjoy relaxing in Praca do Japao, a leafy green park dedicated to the city’s many Japanese immigrants. The park includes a koi pond, 30 cherry trees, and a tea ceremony every Thursday.

Merces

Many of Curitiba’s most famous buildings are located in the Merces neighbourhood, including the Tower of Mercy which offers panoramic views across the city. The Mural de Poty Lazzarotto, the Telephone Museum, and the Canal do Musica are also worth a look. Hotels in Merces are fairly good value, with a large range of budget hotels and hostels located in the bairro.

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Images by Flickr/escapio