Feira de São Cristovão
Near the Quinta da Boa Vista is the traditional Feira de São Cristovão (Pavilhão de São Cristovão, São Cristovão, tel. 21/2580-5335, www.feiradesaocristovao.org.br, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Mon.–Thurs., from 10 a.m. Fri. to 10 p.m. Sun., R$1). Also known as the Feira Nordestina, this massive outdoor market reunites people, produce, and music from Brazil’s northeastern states, many of whom migrated to Rio for work but still get homesick for the food, drink, and sheer animation of their home states.
The feira has 700 barracas, where vendors hawk typical products ranging from hand-woven hammocks from Ceará and leather hats and sandals from the sun-baked Sertão to jars of herb-infused cachaças, hot peppers, and amber-colored dendê (palm) oil from Bahia.
The place is especially lively on the weekends (the barracas stay open around the clock), when Rio’s Northeast expats congregate here to listen to performances of forró (country-like music featuring fiddle, accordion, and percussion) and repentistas (musical preachers).
Getting to Feira de São Cristovão
To get to the feira, take any bus marked “São Cristovão” leaving from the Zona Sul.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition