We headed to Paraty on February 17th by rental car since we were with friends from Virginia, Jeff and Colleen for the week. Paraty has become a popular tourist area in recent years, renowned for the historic town and the coast and mountains in the region. It’s an uneventful 4 hour drive south of Rio de Janeiro on the Costa Verde (Green Coast), a lush, green corridor that runs along the coastline of the state of Rio de Janeiro. We must have taken a different route as the main road took us a little inland without too many views.
When we arrived we went straight to the town center to find our accommodation and Wayne is normally pretty prepared when we arrive in new locations, but this time we had to find a WiFi connection in order to locate it which took us about a mile out of town. As we were driving, I was thinking “where the heck are we and we’re so far away”, but I should have waited until we found the pousada before I started my complaining. It was a beautiful place called Pousada Guaraná with spacious rooms, a delicious breakfast, a swimming pool and the best massage therapist in Brazil! The only negative was the Internet speed was almost unbearable – I think we would have had to check out if I worked another day.
Wayne, Jeff and Colleen spent most of the days while I was working at the beaches and bars along the coast and also a day on a boat. Each day they came back with beautiful pictures and stories to keep me entertained. Some days I wish I could venture out more instead of working, but I love my job and what it allows us to do while traveling. I only ask off when there is something that can’t be missed and we have no other options.
Due to the time zone difference with the US, I still had lots of daylight hours in the morning to venture out. The four of us went paddle boarding one morning which was fantastic being out on the completely flat water on a crystal clear day. We spent an hour paddling around a small island not too far from shore. Another morning, Wayne and I headed to Trinadade to see the natural swimming pools, a shallow area formed by some major boulders blocking the waves near shore. The hike was more than we expected, but it turned out to be a great morning.
After each activity in the morning, it was imperative that we returned for breakfast because it was not to be missed and it was included in the cost of the room. There was a mixture of freshly baked breads, eggs, and tropical fruit cut to perfection. It was one of the highlights of our day – every day!
We found a fabulous restaurant on the beach in Jabaquara, very close to Paraty which we dined at 2 nights in a row. It was one of the best places for atmosphere and food that I have ever been. You could hear the ocean a few feet away, sand in your toes, and the best fish and veggies served on flatiron plates. While waiting for our food, the four of us also had a vicious game of Left, Center Right (I think that’s correct), a dice throwing, simple minded game that can be played anywhere.
Paraty was a great time and we’re so glad Jeff and Colleen were there to enjoy it with us. If they hadn’t come to Brazil we probably would have skipped it and that would have been a mistake.
After the long car ride back to Rio, we were once again back with our airbnb.com host, Sandra, for another 5 fabulous nights. Next we’re off to Iguazu Falls, then Argentina!
February 17th – February 22nd 2013