Just to speak in historical cities in Brazil comes to mind Ouro Preto, Mariana, Tiradentes, Piranhas, Porto Seguro, Petrópolis, among others. With more than 500 years, the country has several places with much history to tell.
Indigenous, Portuguese, French, Spanish, Dutch, German, African, Italian and many other peoples have enriched our architecture, culture, customs and traditions that are scattered from north to south. And even with all the modernization and urban alteration, many places still preserve their assets. Imperial palaces, residential houses, chamber houses, chains, theaters, churches, monasteries and convents are important treasures that constitute the Historical and Cultural Patrimony of a city. O Institute of National Historical and Artistic Heritage – IPHAN is the organ of the Ministry of Culture responsible for cataloging, preserving and disseminating the Brazilian cultural heritage.
Currently, 77 urban clusters by the institute (that is, 77!). As are several, we will split into different posts. This brings a little bit of the unforgettable itineraries of the northeast for those who love history, culture and art! Check out.
Northeast Historical and Cultural Heritage
In the northeast region there are 30 groups listed by Iphan. Separate by State. Let’s go to them.
In Alagoas, the cities of Marechal Deodoro, Penedo and Piranhas invite the tourist for a historical experience. The architecture, the houses and the narrow streets reveal the marks of the colonial and rich past of the region.
In Marshal Deodoro , the highlight is that of the Provincial Palace, where the first president of Brazil was born, the Museum of Sacred Art, the Convent of St. Francis and the Church of Santa Madalena, which bring the baroque and colonial style.
The cities of Penedo and Piranhas are riverside and are on the banks of the São Francisco River. Only for this reason, they would already be great destinations to enjoy nature, but the region was the scene of many important historical events for Brazil.
In Penedo , the Museum of the Imperial Palace stands out; the Nossa Senhora da Corente Church, dating from 1765 and belonging to a Portuguese abolitionist family that protected fugitive slaves; the Public Market and Theatro Sete de Setembro of 1884.
Already Piranhas , in addition to the simple houses along the waterfront, was the site of the ambush in the Grotto of Angico, bloody moment of the country, which triggered the beheading of Lampião and his side at the time of the Cangaço movement. Piranhas is a stopping point for those who Cangaço route and knows more of this remarkable fact in the region.
Bahia is the cradle of Brazil and therefore brings together many events, monuments, buildings, museums and several historical buildings. The historical center of Salvador and the Coast of Discovery were also recognized by Unesco as World Heritage and Capoeira as Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Such wealth, only knowing closely!
We started the Bahia-History tour in savior . The first capital of the country has the Pillory dropped off And no less. Strolling along the alleys is traveling in the history of Brazil-Cologne, in addition to adding a spice of acarajé and art in your walk. The Church Assembly and Cloister of the First Order of St. Francis of Salvador was elected one of the seven wonders of the Lusophone World. Pride of Brazil! Be sure to make a 360 ° virtual tour to admire itself with all the beauties of the ‘Pelô’ and of Salvador.
The next stop is in safe harbor , whose downtown is considered the first housing nucleus of Brazil. Also visit the Memorial of the Epic of Discovery , where there is a replica of the Nau Capitania, which brought Pedro Alvares Cabral to Brazil with his crew in 1500. Must-see.
Already Linen , as well as being the gateway to the Chapada Diamantina , still has a rich Cultural Historical Heritage. There are several mansions scattered around the main streets of the city, with a special mention to the Mother Church of Our Lady of the Rosary, the Afrânio Peixoto Museum, whose collection houses belongings of the doctor and writer, and to the former residence of the Sá family, .
Waterfall is in the Recôncavo Baiano and gathers the second largest architectural set of the baroque style of the State. Cut off by the Paraguaçu River, the city is also a reference for the culture of ‘baianidade’ and religiosity, where Catholic rituals mix with the precepts of candomblé. The Santa Casa, built in the 18th century, the Chapel of Santa Barbara and the Imperial Fountain are important architectural works.
The passage of Dom Pedro II by Cachoeira left an important milestone: the connection between the city and its neighbor, São Félix, which also has its center and several buildings listed as historical patrimony. The charming metallic railway bridge was named after the prince regent and built in the 19th century.
In Saint Felix , the highlight is the Public Chain, the old cigar factory Dannemann – which now houses a cultural space and the old railway station – dating from the Empire-Brazil period.
Igatu is a district of the municipality of Andaraí and became known as the “Machu Picchu of Bahia” due to its stone constructions. It has a historic all-stone house dating from the 19th century, a remnant of the Diamond Cycle in the region of Chapada Diamantina, which is very close. A beautiful region with a charming village amid the natural beauties.
Already Itaparica , famous for its delightful beaches, lies in the island of the same name, but its historical patrimony was vandalized. The Church of São Lourenço – dating from the 17th century had several stolen sacred images, and that of São Elesbão is the only one with its characteristics throughout the country. Sad fact for all sacred art of the region.
Monte Santo , another historical and cultural patrimony, entered history in 1784, when the Pedra do Bendegó – the largest meteorite found on Brazilian soil was found. In 1897 the town was army headquarters during the Canudos War. Their houses and church were also scenes from the recordings of one of the most awarded films of the national cinema – God and the devil in the land of the sun – by the filmmaker Glauber Rocha. In addition to being famous, Monte Santo attracts many faithful in the All Saints’ Pilgrimage, which takes place every year in the Santa Cruz Shrine.
Mucugê is another municipality connected to Chapada Diamantina. Its old Portuguese-style colonial mansions show all the importance of the region in the 19th century, when it served as a gold and diamond mining trading center. They tell the old residents that Mucugê even had an “embassy” of France. After the cycle of these precious things, the city declined, but the historical patrimony is preserved in its alleys.
Rio de Contas was created by Real Provision in 1745 and can be considered the first planned city of Brazil. This is because its streets are wide and with several squares, preserving until today the old route. It was home to freed slaves and underwent a drastic exploration during the gold and diamond cycle, being close to Chapada Diamantina. The various eras and their characteristics are visible to this day, in the beautiful Baroque churches, in the public and religious monuments in stone and in the adobe houses.
Ceará has four historic cities: Aracati, Icó, Sobral and Viçosa do Ceará.
Known for the famous Praia da broken Canoe , Aracati has its urban center listed as historical patrimony and the works of the time of its foundation in 1747, are still preserved, such as the House of the House and Chain – of 1770 and the several houses of Rua do Comércio, Rua das Flores.
Icó , next to Aracati, was the third town of the state – beginning in 1683 – and its architectural heritage dates from the 18th century. Icó was one of the cities that had urbanistic plans planned in the court in Lisbon and the layout of the center still shows all care with streets and squares.
Sobral was internationally known in 1919, together with Ilha do Príncipe, in Sao Tome and Principe, for being the first to prove Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. But well before that, the city already had many events, especially by the Charque Cycle, which moved the economy and developed all local architectural patrimony. The richness of the time can be seen in the Church of Rosario and Bom Parto and in the surrounding houses.
Already Viçosa do Ceará , located in the Serra da Ibiapaba, began with the contact of the Indians who lived there with the French, who came from Maranhão between 1590 and 1604. After that, it became a Jesuit village of the Company of Jesus. In 1695 was built the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, in colonial style, that was dropped and restored in 2006, gaining some more modern items internally.
Alcantara , in Maranhão, lacks presentation when the subject is historical patrimony. One of the most architecturally beautiful cities of the Brazil-Cologne period still preserves many of the houses. Through the historic center is possible to circulate between the buildings in Portuguese style with the typical tiles, brought by the rich barons and merchants who made a fortune exploring the area agricolamente. The Black Palace – former slave market, the palaces of the barons of Pindaré, Mearim, São Bento and Grajaú and the house of the emperor are located in Rua da Amargura, the main one of the 18th century.
To get to know more of the history, visit the Alcântara Historical Museum, located in Praça da Matriz, where the Alcântara postcard is built: a 17th century church that has never been finished, the Matriz de São Matias in his square a pillory, where the disobedient slaves were punished. Do you want to know more about Alcântara? Make our 360 degree virtual tour .
Next stop in Maranhão is São Luís , which has a distinct historical center as it is the only French-style, colonized of the Maranhão capital. The narrow cobbled alleys with narrow alleyways lead to museums, churches and, of course, the beaches. The highlight is the Lions Palace, the Arthur Azevedo Theater, Catarina Mina Alley, Do Carmo Church and Sé Cathedral.
Who said that West Sussex You only have a beautiful beach, you’ve been wrong. It is a good idea to have beautiful beaches, but the capital of Paraíba also has a beautiful architectural complex. The São Francisco Cultural Center, built in 1589, is considered to be the most beautiful and important set of baroque art in the State and houses the cloister and the Church of Santo Antônio in the inner area. In the outdoor area are the Fountain of Santo Antônio and the Clock of the Sun. In addition, the Convent and Nossa Senhora do Carmo Church is a beautiful representative of the colonial baroque.
Already Sand is another municipality with much history in Paraíba. It was the second city in the country to abolish slavery, even before the official signature. It had the first theater of the State, Theatro Minerva. Its center has several colonial houses and also the Museum of Pedro Américo, with several replicas of the pictures of this celebrated citizen of Areiense – among them the famous work “The Grito do Ipiranga” commissioned to him by Dom Pedro II.
Recife , Olinda and Igarassu make the historical triangle of Pernambuco. The three cities are very close and they have great patrimony.
Starting with the capital, its center is called Old Recife and has influence of the Portuguese colonization and also of the time of Dutch dominion. The streets of Bom Jesus, Coeda and Aurora are the main ones that make the visitor travel in time. With its cobbled streets and ancient houses, the streets are home to the first synagogue in the Americas, the Dutch Mint, mansions that now house government agencies, museums and cultural centers, as well as many colorful houses in front of the Capibaribe River.
Climbing up the slopes, Olinda , where there are baroque Portuguese-style baroque constructions, such as the Basilica of St. Benedict, the Convent of St. Francis and the Church of Our Lady of the Snows of the 16th century, the Misericórdia Church with apparent tiles and many houses and mansions from the time of Brazil- Cologne.
Already the highlight in Igarassu is to the Convent of Santo Antônio, from 1588, where the Pinacoteca Museum currently operates, whose collection is one of the most representative of Brazilian colonial painting.
Already in Piauí, the cities of Oeiras, Parnaíba and Piracuruca are that they have historical patrimony registered by Iphan.
Oeiras it has many charms in its Historic Center, the whole area is listed, with a highlight to the Solar das Doze Janelas, the Divino Espirito Santo Museum, the Cine Theater of Oeiras and Ponte Grande, the first stone bridge of Piauí.
Parnaiba is famous for the Delta of the river of the same name, which flows into the ocean forming islets, mangroves and streams. But, the small town preserves a lot of history in its center, mainly in the simple architecture of the Cathedral Nossa Senhora da Graça and in the old buildings scattered in the narrow streets.
Already Piracuruca is the gateway to the National Park of the Seven Cities, but those who pass by do not miss the various mansions of the historic center, especially the Mother Church built in stone in the Baroque style. The city still has an archaeological site, with Brazilian rock art, of great interest for historians.
large northern river
The Rio Grande do Norte is not outside the patrimonial set listed from the northeast. Christmas , its capital, houses the Fortress of the Magi, built between 1598 and 1630, on the banks of the Potengi River.
In addition, the historical center encompasses the Upper City and part of the Ribeira District, especially the Potengi Palace – now the State Pinacoteca / Palace of Culture, the Alberto Maranhão Theater, the Church of Our Lady of the Rosary of the Blacks and the Church of Santo Antônio. The Feast of Santana de Caicó is also listed, but as a commodity of immaterial nature. Make one 360 ° virtual tour by Natal.
Sergipe has two cities with incredible national treasures. The dynamic pair is Laranjeiras and São Cristóvão.
Laranjeiras was the most important Sergipe city of Brazil-Cologne. It was built the first port and the squares and streets are aligned obeying the river route. In the central area are the various buildings listed in Baroque style, especially the Church of Comandaroba or Church of Our Lady of Conception, the Mother Church of the Heart of Jesus, the House of Ti Herculano and the Engenho Retiro, which houses the house of the Jesuits and the Chapel of St. Anthony.
Already Saint Cristopher is also a World Cultural Heritage, recognized by Unesco in 2010. It presents a unique and authentic record in architecture and works since it was built between 1580 and 1640, a period in which Portugal and Spain were united under a single crown in the reigns of Philip II and Philip III. The patrimonial highlight is due to the constructions around St. Francis Square, such as the Museum of Sacred Art, the Convent and Church of St. Francis, the Historical Museum of the State of Sergipe, the Church of St. Elizabeth and Congregation Missionary Sisters Lar Imaculada Conceição – dating from 1607, besides the slopes of Epaminondas (Beco da Poesia), the Port of Banca and Açougue.
Visiting the historical heritage of Brazil is to preserve our memory. Which one do you know?