Overview

The open, rolling hills in the historically important state of Minas Gerais, north of Rio, are dotted with delightful colonial towns, founded to service the mining of gold, precious stones and latterly iron. Nowadays they enchant those visitors with an interest in colonial culture and history: the region is the birthplace of Brazilian independence. The university town and arts centre of Ouro Prêto is the best known, with 23 baroque churches crowning the hills. Other historic towns of interest are the less-developed but equally lovely Diamantina, Mariana and arty Tiradentes with its horse-drawn carriages and little steam train.

Minas Gerais embraces 21st century Brazil with equal enthusiasm: its capital Belo Horizonte is a regional powerhouse with a thriving cultural scene. Nearby is the vast open-air contemporary art museum and botanical park of Inhotim, unique in Brazil.

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Where to go when - our guide to Ouro Preto and Minas Gerais

Ouro Preto

The weather in Ouro Preto and Minas Gerais is wide and varied

The birthplace of Brazilian independence, the state of Minas Gerais, offers open, rolling hills dotted with delightful colonial towns. With a fresher climate than the coast, here there are pleasant summer temperatures and little rainfall in the Brazilian winter. The summer, December - March, is not unduly hot but some rainfall is possible almost every day. The festivals of Carnival and Easter are celebrated with parades.

View our Ouro Preto and Minas Gerais weather guide

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Meet our team

Real Latin american experts

  • Alex
    Alex Walker - Travel Expert

    A globetrotter since her childhood, Alex spent a year studying abroad in Guadalajara and has returned to Latin America countless times since then.

  • Sallly
    Sally Dodge - Travel Expert

    A former Journey Latin America tour leader, Sally spent 7 years working, travelling and living throughout Latin America before returning to the UK to help people arrange their own adventures to this wonderful destination.

  • Chris
    Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert

    Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.

  • Heloise
    Heloise Buxton - Travel Expert

    Heloise started her Latin American journey as an exchange student in Santiago, Chile. With extended summer holidays this was the perfect opportunity to backpack through Bolivia, Peru, Argentina and Brazil.

  • Charlotte
    Charlotte Daubeney - Travel Expert

    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

  • Ben
    Ben Line - Travel Expert

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.

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