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Butantan Institute

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Avenida Doutor Vital Brasil 1500, Sao Paulo, State of Sao Paulo 05503-900, Brazil
Phone Number:
(011) 3726-7222
See all hours
Sat - Sun 07:00 - 18:00
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Fee: Yes

Frogs and spiders and snakes, oh my! The Instituto Butantan, a biomedical...

Frogs and spiders and snakes, oh my! The Instituto Butantan, a biomedical research and zoological center founded in 1901, has all these creepy crawlies and more. The institute was instrumental in controlling scores of tropical diseases and now focuses on developing vaccines and researching venomous animals. Brazil's largest serpentarium is on-site, as is a convenient anti-venom clinic, just in case things get out of hand. In any event, the kiddies will get a kick out of handling the cool-blooded things, or at least peering at them through reinforced glass. Once you've had your fill of scales and rattles, take a stroll in the lovely landscaped gardens.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,018 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 25
  • 19
    Very good
  • 7
  • 3
  • 2
Absolutely mesmerizing...the best attraction is Sao Paulo.

Exotic and deadly snakes from all over the world, on display safely in a world renowned facility. Kids will squeal. I loved the open rattle snake pit at the entrance.

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 9 December 2016
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1,018 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 56: English reviews
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 December 2016

Exotic and deadly snakes from all over the world, on display safely in a world renowned facility. Kids will squeal. I loved the open rattle snake pit at the entrance.

Thank bigdgunferd
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 November 2016

This place is simply breathtaking and if you love snakes, it is inspiring, educational and leaves you awestruck. The grounds nearby are great to walk around especially if its a nice sunny day. The ticket cost is reasonable and allows you to access the three main places. Amazing to see the variety of snakes just lying there and I would... More 

Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level Contributor
25 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 November 2016

This is on the grounds of a functioning hospital--green, shady and quiet--in the middle of one of the largest cities in the world! Entrance fee to the museum/exhibits is cheap and things are labeled in Portuguese and English. Lots of creepy-crawlies to delight the kids and an interesting overview of the history of the vaccination and anti-venom program in Brazil.... More 

Thank HerouxFamily
São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 October 2016

Haven't been ther since long 15 years, and it was charming to get back there and see how little changed: I felt like a child. Friendly guides, nice expos, great variety of animals, insects and environments, and also the handling tank, makes the living bio museum a very nice place to go visit, alone, with friends, and/or family. There's also... More 

Thank Ricardisessa
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
31 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 October 2016

The campus is beautiful and peaceful. I enjoyed walking around the park-like grounds. But lets be honest, if you're coming here, you're coming to see the snakes. Which are super cool. They have tons of specimens displayed in unique ways (e.g. the coral vs false coral snakes). BUT... you're not the only one coming to see the snakes. There are... More 

Thank mjetmore
Fawley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
58 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 August 2016 via mobile

This is something of a hidden gem in São Paulo. There are some nice touches and it's good that many of the displays are in English and well written. The array of snakes, spiders, etc. native to Brazil is also impressive. The disappointment was that many of the exhibits were closed during our visit, and while it's cheap to enter... More 

Thank jawsie1
Bogota, Colombia
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 August 2016

The museum is small but shows many species of snakes, frogs and lizards. Great to go with children as everything is very interactive and the guides are more than happy to answer any question about the animals. We were also able to see one snakes' venom extraction (although I don't know if it is for every visitor as we went... More 

Thank Mariaramirez1653
Level Contributor
51 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 July 2016

If you want too see a lot of snakes huddling together in a grassy hill during the wet season - you come to the right place, but what's the idea ? Nothing to see outside, a small museum inside. You are not satisfied when you leave, believe me. Take a drink somewhere else.

Thank Eva E
Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
249 reviews
175 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 June 2016

Institute dedicated to research of these creatures and responsible for the development of antidotes, but situated in the middle of a very nice park and having lots of educational activities, especially for kids. They tend to be a little bit afraid of the snakes, but very nice way to explain how these things work and teach them about the subject,... More 

Thank AndreRezende
São Paulo
Level Contributor
80 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 May 2016

Butantan is one of the world´s most important research centers on tropical diseases and must be one of the few tourist attractions with an emergency center where you can go if you have been bitten by a snake or poisonous insect. It has a number of museums, snake pits and a monkey house, and is located within the enormous wooded... More 

1 Thank Paulista668

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Staying in Butanta

Neighbourhood Profile
Butantã is home to the main campus of São Paulo’s University, and this neighbourhood has a very different feel from the rest of the city. Within a huge green space, covering around eight million square meters, you can feel the fresh air while mingling with recreational athletes exercising along the streets of the university complex. Outside the university, there is a more residential area where you can see children playing. A hot spot in the neighbourhood is the Food Truck Park, where people from all over town head to taste mouthwatering meals and desserts.
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