Travellers visiting Brazil, the largest country in South America, can veer away from the popular spots such as São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. One can go on from these cities to explore the state of Minas Gerais via Zona da Mata Regional Airport. It is located on the map between -21.513056 (latitude) and -43.173058 (longitude), allowing travellers to visit Juiz de Fora and the surrounding area in a convenient manner.
Officially known as Presidente Itamar Franco Airport, this domestic gateway handles passengers going to and coming from Campinas in São Paulo. Planes land on a single asphalt runway measuring 8,251 feet in length. Although the construction was completed in 2007, operations began only in August 2011 which makes Zona da Mata Regional Airport a relatively new airport in terms of years in service.
What to see & do
Travellers going to Juiz de Fora will find a lively environment with a variety of sights. First is Calcadao da Rua Halfeld where one can start with a bit of shopping in a traditional setting. Many restaurants can also be found here, making it fun to choose between different options and taste local food such as barbecued meat or moqueca (fish stew). One can follow these up with cachaca, a traditional cocktail made from fermented sugarcane juice, and a serving of brigadeiros, a sweet concoction of cocoa power, condensed milk, butter, and sprinkles, for those craving for sugary treats.
After savouring a meal with coffee or dessert, one can then move on to the Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology in the Federal University of Juiz de Fora. Other than the displays on local artefacts, visitors can tour around some parts of the university, a prominent academic institution in Minas Gerais. There is also the Natural History Museum to get around in and see the exhibits on the flora and fauna found in the countryside. Art lovers can then venture to the Museum of Modern Art where one can scrutinise and appreciate the works of talented artists in the community.
From here, one can then go on a nature tour in Imperador Hill, the highest peak in Juiz de Fora. Climb to the top to get an overall view of the city. Those looking for a spot of green can visit Lahinja Park for the trees and other flora thriving there. The large lake here is also a major attraction due to its clear waters and beautiful, serene quality. Mirante also has pleasant vistas to see for those looking for various views to enjoy. One can additionally turn to Parque Halfeld where one can either walk around or sit down on the benches to rest for a while before exploring again.
How to get around within Juiz de Fora
Travellers can move around the city of Juiz de Fora in buses or cars. Lack of information on the condition of the transportation in the area requires tourists to look for car rental options upon landing on the airport. One might need an international driver’s licence and other papers, however. For those willing to take public transport, one can enquire with the local police about options to arrive in the intended destination easily.
How to get there
Tourists interested in exploring Juiz de Fora can schedule flights going to Zona de Mata Regional Airport via Viracopos International Airport in Campinas. The airline to look for is Azul Brazilian Airlines which run regular flights going between the two cities.