2014 World Cup Cities: Brasilia

Considered the youngest city in Brazil, Brasilia serves as the federal capital of the South American country and its Federal District. It sits along the Brazilian Highlands to the Central-west region and was founded in April, 1960 to serve as the new Brazilian capital. With an estimated population of 2,789,761 as of 2013, the city is one of the most populous cities in the country and boasts of one of the highest GDP per capita among the major Latin American cities.

 

Modern city

 

Brasilia has a unique, modernist landscape which was designed by renowned urban planner Lucio Costa & architect Oscar Niemeyer. It boasts of a mix of urban zoning and swooping freeways featuring a restaurant sector, a banking sector and an embassies sector, with the lower-income population being forced out to the nearby satellite cities (cidades-satelites).

 

Food options available

 

Believe it or not, Brasilia does not have its own traditional, regional cuisine, probably due to the fact that it’s relatively young. It’s inhabited & visited by Brazilians from all over the country including many international guests and has arguably one of Brazil’s best restaurant bases. Here, you can find delicacies from various regions with bias on the Midwest. Additionally, there are many great places with rich influences from French, Arabic, Japanese, Spanish or Italian cuisine.

Things to do in Brasilia

 

Explore the Metropolitan Cathedral

One of legendary architect Oscar Niemeyer’s greatest masterpieces, the Metropolitan Cathedral is a completely unique building both in Brazil and in the world! Tourists come from different parts of the world to see the stunning glasswork inside the building.

 

Metropolitan Cathedral - 2014 World Cup

 

Take a tour of the TV Tower

One of the world’s tallest buildings, Brasilia’s TV Tower offers breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding areas. You can choose to go all the way to the top or simply tour the bazaar & street fair at the base of the tower during weekends.

 

Visit the National Park

The Park boasts of numerous hiking trails that takes you to the thick, lush forests in the middle of the Brasilia’s center. The two popular ones are the 20-minute Capivara course and the hour-long Cristal tour (which is ideal if you’re the more hardy hiker), and both will take you around the park. One of the biggest activities here, however, is visiting the mineral springs which are located at the heart of the park. You will find 2 areas of mineral springs, both which are believed to aid in healing.

The Estadio Nacional de Brasilia (Stadium)

 

Estádio Nacional de Brasilia - 2014 World Cup

By Danilo Borges/Portal da Copa (Portal da Copa) [CC-BY-3.0-br (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/br/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Soccer is one of the major passions of the people of Brasilia so it’s little wonder that the strikingly beautiful Estadio Nacional stadium was given a significant role in the 2014 FIFA World cup. A multi-purpose stadium, Estadio is currently used mainly for football matches and has a capacity of 72,788.

 

The present day stadium sits at the same location where the Nacional Mane Garrincha, named after legendary Brazilian footballer Garrincha, stood. Designed in 1974 by Icaro de Castro Mello, the original stadium was completely demolished in 2010 to pave way for the new stadium. Estadio Nacional features many bells & whistles as well as a lowered pitch for better viewing for the spectators.

 

Additionally, it was built on carbon neutrality which makes it a great venue for both the world’s famous sport and Mother Nature. With a total cost of US$900 million, the stadium is the world’s 2nd most expensive football stadium after Wembley Stadium of England, and will play host to seven games during the World Cup, including an important quarterfinal match.

 

Getting to Estadio Nacional de Brasilia

According to the Stadium Guide, the stadium is found just 2 kilometers from the city’s metro station Central and can be accessed using public transportation. It’s easy to get to it from the center of Brasilia.

 

Food options available

There are numerous restaurants near the stadium offering a great variety of dishes. One common delicacy is the typical Brazilian steakhouse concept that goes casual with burgers & grilled steaks and a side of rice & beans, which is the national staple. Other dining options include Brazilian Pizza served rodizio-style and traditional churrascaria.