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São Cristóvão Fair: a Carioca way to know the Northeast

The Centro Luiz Gonzaga de Tradições Nordestinas (Luiz Gonzaga Northeastern Traditions’ Center) is a great option to eat, drink, dance and know a little bit about Brazilian northeastern culture. The place is also called Feira de São Cristóvão (São Cristóvão Fair) or Feira dos Paraíbas (Paraíbas’ Fair), has about 700 tents and about 250 thousand visitors, including locals and tourists, every month.

The fair’s history began in 1945 when the first trucks from Brazilian northeast came to Campo de São Cristóvão (São Cristóvão’s Field) bringing many people determined to work in Rio de Janeiro. And then, for the next 58 years, the fair took place right there under the trees. But, in 2003 it was transferred to an old pavilion which was transformed into the Center that has now good infrastructure, cleaning, security, public toilets and parking.

And very good food too! Everything has exactly the same taste from the northeast: acarajé from Bahia, corned beef from Natal and chicken of Angola from Teresina. However, some people still prefer the traditional rapadura (a sweet made with sugarcane juice and cassava flour). All those delicious things can be found in tents like Jerimum do Nordeste and Barraca da Chiquita. The fair’s restaurants are open during lunch time from Tuesday to Thursday. From Friday 10:00am to Sunday 10:00pm all the tents work with non stop fun and music of bands and traditional musicians.

The most popular Brazilian rhythm danced by all the visitors is forró. It’s a mixture of many northeast dances like baião which was popularized by Luiz Gonzaga, “the king of baião” and Humberto Teixeira, “the doctor of baião”, the two biggest stars of São Cristóvão.

And those who like handicraft can also find products from the northeast made with straw, bamboo, seeds, stones, tissues, wood and other elements.

The fair is located in Campo de São Cristóvão N/Nº – Pavilhão de São Cristóvão.