Latin America

Rio Grande do Sul Culture

Cultural entities

Among the main educational establishments in Rio Grande do Sul are the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul and the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, both in the capital; the University of Passo Fundo (private); the Federal University of Pelotas; the Federal University of Santa Maria; the University of Vale do Rio dos Sinos (private), in São Leopoldo; the University of Caxias do Sul (private).

Among the cultural associations, we highlight the Historical Institute of Rio Grande do Sul, which has been publishing a magazine since 1860, the Rio-Grandense Academy of Letters and the Press Association, in Porto Alegre. It operates in the capital, subordinated to the State Department of Education and Culture, the Historical Archive of Rio Grande do Sul.


The most important museums in the state are Júlio de Castilhos, the Weapons Museum General Osório, the Art Museum of Rio Grande do Sul, the Museum of Sacred Art and the Rio-Grandense Museum of Natural Sciences, in the capital; the Museum of the Gaucho Traditions Center Rincão da Lealdade, of products, costumes and regional objects, in Caxias do Sul; the Anthropological Museum of Ijuí; the Pelotas Historical Museum; the Rio Grande Oceanographic Museum; the Vítor Bersani Historical Museum, in Santa Maria; the Barão do Santo Ângelo Museum, in Rio Pardo; the Farroupilha Museum, in Triunfo, installed in the former Farroupilha Government Palace; and the Colonial Museum Visconde de São Leopoldo, in São Leopoldo.

Architectural collection

According to, the state has a rich architectural collection and has numerous monuments listed by the National Historical and Artistic Heritage Institute (IPHAN), including the São Sebastião church, in Bajé, built in 1863 and where the remains of Gaspar Silveira rest. Martins; the unfinished fort of D. Pedro II, in Caçapava do Sul; the farroupilha government palace (now the Farroupilha Museum), the farroupilha headquarters and Garibaldi’s house in Piratini; the church of São Pedro, in Rio Grande; the ruins of the People and the Church of São Miguel, in Santo Ângelo; the church of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, in Viamão.


In addition to historical monuments and religious and popular festivals, the Piratini Palace (seat of the state government), the Metropolitan Cathedral, the Church of Nossa Senhora das Dores, the Farroupilha Park, the Araújo Viana Auditorium, the movable bridge stand out in the capital from the Getúlio Vargas crossing, the Santa Teresa hill (whose gazebo provides a panoramic view of the city), the São Pedro Theater, and the Cristal Racecourse.

On the coast there are some well-known resorts. The main one is Torres, with the beaches Grande, Guarita, Cal and Prainha. In Capão da Canoa, the beaches of Araçá, Arco-Íris, Guarani, Zona Nova, Noiva do Mar, Rainha do Mar and Capão Novo are located; in Tramandaí, the beaches Jardim Atlântico, Oásis do Sul and Jardim do Éden.

Among the points of tourist interest in the mountainous area, the cities of Canela, Gramado and São Francisco de Paula stand out, with parks and waterfalls. Also in the mountainous region are the cities of Caxias do Sul and Bento Gonçalves, centers of wine production.

Events & Events

Among the state’s religious festivals, the river procession of Nossa Senhora dos Navegantes, on February 2, also known as “Melancias”, stands out in the capital; the feast of the Divine, celebrated in the church of the Holy Spirit; and the processions of Corpus Christi and of Our Lady Madre de Deus (patron saint of Porto Alegre).

Also in the capital, there are annual exhibitions of animals and derived products (August), Farroupilha Week (14 to 20 September) and the state orchid exhibition (from 1 to 8 December); in Santana do Livramento and São Borja, agricultural exhibitions are held (October); in Caxias do Sul, the famous Festa da Uva (February); and in Gramado, the Festa das Hortências (biennial) and the National Handicraft Fair (annual). In all the cities of the Rio Grande do Sul campaign, rodeos are held (cattle gathering for counting, curing or selling).

Typical dances of the state are the bambaquerê (kind of quadrilha), and congada (popular auto), the chimarrita (fandango), the jardineira (figured and sung dance, of loose pairs) and the break-mana (tap dance and waltz dance). In the areas of German colonization, kerbs are held (popular dances that usually last three days).

The typical cuisine has as main dish the barbecue (a piece of meat cut into a long strip and thrown into the brazier of the stove). The most commonly used and most consumed drink is chimarrão (hot and bitter yerba tea sipped by means of a pump). Wine and apple brandy are another favorite drink of the gauchos.

Rio Grande do Sul Culture