Planning a Football Trip to Santos, home of Pele and Neymar. How to get to Santos and how to get to the ground, what else to see while you are there.
Santos is a city in the south of the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Santos has the biggest seaport in Latin America; is a significant tourist center; has large industrial complexes and shipping centers, which handle most of the world’s sugar exports and a large portion of the world’s coffee exports; as well as a number of other Brazilian exports including oranges, bananas and cotton. It is most famous as the home of Santos FC and of course Pele.
Football Trip to Santos – How to get there and How to get about.
The closest major airport to fly to is Sao Paulo. You can plan your Football Trip to Sao Paulo using our guide.
For your Football Trip to Santos you can plan your trip by bus – Take a taxi or the subway to Jabaquara Bus Station. There you can take a bus directly to Santos. Estimated travel time: 1 hour 20 minutes. Buses leave every 15 minutes 24 hours a day. There were loads of companies and I didn’t need to book so could just turn up and get the next one.
The bus stops at the Terminal Rodoviario De Santos and them some go on to São Vicente (Santos’ twin city), some to Gonzaga (beach) and some to Ponta da Praia (on the channel, handy for taking a boat on to Guarujá). You can get off at many other stops on the bus way on, but only if you do not have luggage in the luggage trunk of the bus (it is possible to request your luggage is removed from the luggage trunk and placed inside the bus at the Santos Terminal in order to get off at a later minor stop with luggage). Terminal Rodoviario De Santos is directly in the center, however, the beach is far away (app. 5km).
The best way to get around the centre of Santos is by the newly restored Victorian trams, which leave on guided tours from in front of the Prefeitura Municipal on Praça Visconde de Mauá. The tram passes most of the interesting sights, including the azulejo -covered houses on Rua do Comércio, the Bolsa do Café and some of the oldest churches. Local buses run from the colonial centre and rodoviária to the seafront – look for Gonzaga or Praia on their destination plaque.
Football Trip to Santos – Getting to the Stadium
The Estádio Urbano Caldeira is located on the Princesa Isabel street, in the neighborhood of Vila Belmiro, occupying the block bounded by the streets of Tiradentes, Don Pedro I, and José de Alencar.
From the main bus station you can get bus number 017, 181 – I didn’t find it the easiest to work out where I was going on the buses or where to get off so you might find a taxi better.
From Praça Dos Andradas get the 023 Bus towards Ferry Boat, (32 mins, 5 stops), get off at Av. Senador Pinheiro Machado; and walk to the ground (440m)
Taxi’s are not very expensive but you might want to check the meter if you worry about the driver ripping you off by a couple of quid.
Football Trip to Santos – The Stadium
A famous and historic stadium, almost 100 years old and of course the home of Pele. Called A Vila Mais Famosa do Mundo (The Village of the World’s Most Famous), the Estádio Urbano Caldeira also came to be called after the era of Os Santásticos (1956–1973) the “Alçapão da Vila (The Village Trap) because opposing team often left the ground defeated.Due to the proximity of the stands with the field where the matches unfolds, the pressure that the fans have on opposing teams was said to be incredible.After the golden age, the Vila Belmiro became synonymous with Joga Bonito. (from Wikipedia)
In 1933, the stadium got renamed Estádio Urbano Caldeira after an ex-player and ex-coach who dedicated large parts of his life to the development of the club. Many people kept referring to the stadium as Vila Belmiro though.
A distinguished list of players have called this stadium home, Pelé, Coutinho, Pepe, Giovanni, Pitta, Robinho, Diego, Neymar and Paulo Henrique Ganso for example.
Football Trip to Santos – Tickets
Tickets for Santos matches can be bought online via Futebolcard.com, and from a few days before the match at the ticket windows of the stadium or at one of the other pre-sale points.
If tickets remain available, these can also be bought at the stadium on the day of the match. Despite Vila Belmiro’s limited capacity, it rarely sells out for league matches.
Ticket prices depend on the match, but generally range somewhere between R$ 40.00 and R$ 100.00.
Football Trip to Santos – Where to stay.
Most probably Sao Paulo if you are just going to the stadium for a day trip. If you need to stay over to see a game then Santos Hostel offers shared accommodation with free Wi-Fi, shared kitchen and laundry services, only 1 km from Santos’ Boqueirão Beach. Santos city centre is 3 km away. About £12 a night
Hotel Imperador is a bit more expensive at £28 a night – Located across from Santos’ José Menino Beach, Hotel Imperador offers panoramic sea views from its rooftop sun terrace, as well as free Wi-Fi. There is a playground, games room, and 24-hour reception.
Monte Serrat Hotel is located in Santos city centre, only 1 km from Santos Bus Terminal, offering 2 hot tubs, a sauna and fitness centre. Boqueirão Beach is 2.5 km away. It’s a bit more expensive again at £38 a night
Mercure Santos (Av. Washington Luiz 565, website) is a popular choice. Near the beach, this highrise has a rooftop pool and bar. The sixth floor nightclub stays open till early in the morning. Rooms from $140.
Football Trip to Santos – What else to see & do.
Dock Museum, Av. Rodrigues Alves with Rua João Alfredo, ☎ 3233 6565. Mon-Fri 7-11AM and 3-5PM. This museum tells the story of what was during the 19th century the greatest coffee dock in the world. Free.
Beach front garden. The longest beach front garden in the world according to the Guinness with 5335 meters long. Just go to the beach and you will find it.
Coffee Stock Exchange, Rua XV de Novembro, 95, ☎ 3219 5585. Tue-Sun, 9AM-6PM. Once an active and important institution, nowadays it houses a Museum of Coffee where visitors can see the history of Coffee in Brazil. There are also some old machineries and different kinds of coffee. The building has renascentist inspiration and was reopened to the public in 1997. Adults R$4; Students and seniors R$2.
Santos Futebol Club. Rua Princesa Isabel, Phone: 3239-4000. Santos Football Club’s museum displays its collection in an area of 380m2, taking visitors on a journey through the history of the club. Besides the 500 trophies won in different events, there are life-size photos, banners, documents, uniforms, soccer balls, multi-media resources and other items, exhibited in a well-organized and singularly attractive environment. The exhibits are divided into themed spaces, among them Pelé, with items from the personal collection of the King of Football. The museum offers multimedia equipment showing historic moves. CineGol is a projection room that reproduces a section of a football pitch, where films and special clips on the club are screened. Guided tours take in the Urbano Caldeira Stadium, players’ changing rooms, the stands, and the Armando Gomes Press Center, used by journalists for recordings and interviews after games. www.santosfc.com.br
Santos is home to the so-called tallest cemetery in the world, a soaring high-rise building used for graves. The Memorial Necropole Ecumenica II (emorialcemiterio.com.br) is 14 stories tall and designed in the neo-gothic style. Another point of interest on the skyline is the Nossa Senhora do Monte Serrat Sanctuary (monteserrat.com.br).
Museu do Café or Coffee Museum. (Rua XV de Novembro 95, website). This homage to coffee is more a cathedral than a place of business with marble pillars, patterned marble floors and stained glass doors, windows and ceiling. Circling the old auction hall are glass wall murals of the Portuguese arriving at the port and other historical scenes. Antiquated cultivating tools and photos of laborers carting heavy sacks of coffee contribute to Santos’ coffee story, starting from 1717 up to today. But for many, the café is the main attraction. Here visitors can sample coffee toffee, snacks and hot and cold coffee drinks.
Monte Serrat – This landmark is in the heart of the city, and at the top it has the Our Lady of Mount Serrat Sanctuary, the patron saint of Saints and celebrated on September 8. It is accessed by trolley, which operates on funicular system rails; or a stairway with 415 steps, with 14 niches containing Via Sacra representations. Located 157 meters above sea level, it permits a 360 degree view of the city and partial views of the cities of São Vicente, Cubatão, Guarujá and Praia Grande.
Football Trip to Santos – Eating & Drinking
Cafe Paulista, Praça Rui Barbosa 8 (in Centro, close to the Coffee Bourse), ☎ ”+55 13” 3219-5550. Nice old cafe from 1931 where the coffee bosses used to hang out. It has kept some of the former style with white table cloths, attentive servers that fill up your glass, etc. Great salads, meat, and seafood. Very good selection of brazilian and imported wines R$15-40 for big portions.
Vista ao Mar (Av. Bartolomeu de Gusmão, 68) facing the beach specializes in seafood. Families pack the room on weekends, sharing paella and fish dishes.
Mar del Plata (Avenida Almirante Saldanha Gama, 137) – Top ranked on Trip Advisor and recommended for excellent Sea Food.
Ao chopp do Gonzaga (Avenida D. Ana Costa, 512) The steakhouse When Chopp do Gonzaga is part of the history of the city of Santos. Opened in 1962