Belo Horizonte - Rio de Janeiro Study Tour

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College Study Abroad

College Study Abroad

Fall Block I - Belo Horizonte

The first of Brazil’s planned cities, Belo Horizonte occupies a wide plateau encircled by the Curral del Rey Mountains, a hilly ridge forming the “beautiful horizon” for which the city was named. Belo Horizonte lies on the eastern edge of the sertão, or dry interior, of Brazil. An important cultural center, BH (“Bay-Ahgah”, as the city is popularly known) possesses several museums, including the Palace of the Arts and the Mineiro Museum. The city is the principal link by air, road, and rail to communities in the sertão as well as to the main population centers of Brazil’s Atlantic coast. Located in the bucolic countryside 1.5 hours from BH is the world-famous contemporary art center and botanical garden of Inhotim. The 140-hectare visitation area is made up of forest fragments and gardens, with an extensive collection of rare tropical species situated among lush vegetation and meandering pathways leading to twenty-six separate galleries featuring works by Brazilian and international contemporary artists.

Free Time Suggestions

Visit the Pope's square, which got its popular name in 1980 when Pope John Paul II visited Belo Horizonte and blessed the city from there. The history says that he liked the view from above Belo Horizonte so much and he started his speech saying “Que Belo Horizonte” that could be translated as what a beautiful horizon. After the visit from Pope John Paul II, Belo Horizonte decided to set a memorial to his visit that, nowadays, stands as the central point in the beautiful square. It has a beautiful view of the city and amazing sunset.
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