Praia Grande in the state of São Paulo (pictures taken during one of the cloudier moments)
Irrefutable evidence that Spider Man has left the world of crime fighting and life saving to wear Haviana flip flops and sell cotton candy on the beach in Brasil. Notice the fanny pack too (apparently, super hero outfits don't have pockets.)
Marco and Regina rented a 2 bedroom/2 bath apartment just 3 blocks off the beach for the week. Regina is an awesome cook and made some wonderful meals for us this weekend!
Praia Grande has an area called A Praça da Paz (The Square of Peace) that has 7 giant busts of people the sculptor, Gilmar Pinna, felt defended peace (Jesus Christ, pictured above, Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, etc.) The sculptures were amazingly detailed. They were made from welded together pieces of steel and iron, were each ~30 feet tall, and weighed as much as 30 tons apiece. They were positioned all in a circle in a big decorative pond with fountains and a sidewalk connecting all of them. It was really gorgeous at night all lit up!
Praia Grande was a really safe town and had a nice beach. Prices in the city seemed to be a good bit lower than in Belo Horizonte or Rio de Janeiro. The water was clean and warm, and the beach wasn't overly crowded. It probably won't make it on our list of all time favorite beaches (the sand was very hard packed and there was a bit too much litter on the beach) but if you lived in or near São Paulo it would make a nice weekend beach getaway location!