Pátio do Colégio
Around the corner from Rua Roberto Simonsen, you’ll find the Pátio do Colégio (Pátio do Colégio 2, Centro, tel. 11/3105-6899, www.pateocollegio.com.br, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Tues.–Sun., R$5). This whitewashed Portuguese colonial edifice is actually a replica of the original 16th-century Jesuit college that was the first building in São Paulo.
Founded by José de Anchieta and Manuel da Nóbrega, two priests who were bent on catechizing the region’s indigenous population, the college’s construction marked the beginning of the city’s history. In the garden, where there is a pleasant café, you can see one of the college’s original walls, fashioned out of clay, leaves, and cattle blood.
Part of the Pátio do Colégio, the small and rather modest Museu Padre Anchieta contains a few relics—such as the original 16th-century granite baptismal font—and documents that recount the history of São Paulo’s early years.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition