Perhaps nowhere else in Minas do the colonial charm and picturesque natural setting blend so harmoniously as in Tiradentes. Quaint historic houses, fringed by exuberant wildflowers, stand out against a backdrop of pretty blue mountains threaded with hiking trails. If you can, visit midweek, when the town’s abundant attractions are most easily appreciated. On weekends, the swarms of visitors who come to gawk at Tiradentes’s antique stores and boutiques can make the place feel a bit like a theme park, and the sudden increase in horse-drawn carriages creates some strong aromas!
Tiradentes’ center is a compact and photogenic cluster of cobbled streets. The town’s colonial buildings run up a hillside from the main square, Largo das Forras, culminating in the beautiful Igreja Matriz de Santo Antônio. From the terrace in front of the church there’s a stunning view of the terracotta-tiled colonial houses, the green valley and the towering wall of stone formed by the Serra de São José. For another picture-postcard view of town, climb the hill just above the bus station to the grassy square in front of Igreja de São Francisco de Paula.