Foolz and I took a day trip yesterday (Sunday) to Santos, a beach town about an hour outside of São Paulo. We took a bus, it was easy as pie and only $7 US each way. Santos, it turns out, is like the opposite of São Paulo -- it is simple, small, and quite beautiful. It is sort of a delapidated little city -- it kinda reminded me of Valparaíso in Chile, and a little bit of Havana as well. There was a lot of peeling colonial architecture and tight streets, which gave me deja-vu of Centro Habana.
Anyway, it was raining the whole day, so we just ate lunch in a cutesy Italian place that was showing "Home Alone 2" on TV, walked around a bit, looked at the beach (which had a lot of potential, if the weather had been nice), then got on a public bus that just happened to go everywhere in the city, including the creepy shipyards and loading docks that cover like 1/4 of the town. Overall, a nice day, and very nice to get out of the city. I love São Paulo like a brother and all, but it's good to change things up every once in a while.
This is the official Santos website: http://www.santosbrasil.com.br/ If you click on it, you'll see that the city focuses on shipping. And boy, do they have some shipyards there. I am telling you.