Buzios and Paraty, the two jewels of Brazil.
Buzios and Paraty with us, Mario and Nick. We will take you on two side trips within touch of Rio De Janeiro. Indeed you watched Part 1 of Brazil, you will know that we ended our trip with a hike through Tijuca National Forest. It was awesome and all but it did cause us to miss the last available bus from Rio De Janeiro. This resulted in having to get a 4-hour Uber to ride to Buzios, not ideal but at least we got there. Buzios is a small town approximately 200km east of Rio. The town is popular among locals, offers a vast amount of activities and a buzzing nightlife. A must-visit!
From Buzios, we headed west, past Rio De Janeiro, and arrived in Paraty. A small village-like town. We strolled through the Paraty Old Town, soak up its charm with its quiet cobbled streets and small pastel-coloured houses. The Old Town is kept very traditional and offers a vast amount of local cuisine and small shops. When you get tired of walking you can even hire a horse and carriage. They will take you through the town’s cobbled roads, the old-school way. Paraty has a small harbour with boat tours on offer. Some of the tours will take you to hushed nearby islands to swim in some of Brazil’s clearest waters. Watch our video to see fish swimming in these clear shores. We hope that you will enjoy the video and absorb more about Buzios and Paraty.
If you decide to visit these two awesome towns which we really encourage you to do, read further to get a better picture of these two unique places and the surrounding beaches.
Geriba beach is one of the 23 beaches spread on an 8km peninsula in Buzios and is one of the best ones to visit. It is a favourite spot for many young people. It is a large beach with plenty of space and nice seaside restaurants which often offer free beach chairs and umbrellas to their clients.
Many people go there for surfing, jogging, and enjoying the beautiful, big yet elegant waves. The light and soft sands are amazing for a nice sunset walk. One of the favourite places for food lovers is the beach restaurant called Fishbone. It is a great place to experience real Brazilian cuisine. If you decide to visit this place, the Brazilian seafood stew is highly recommended. Overall, the culinary mastery presented in their dishes is top-notch. The restaurant caters to seafood lovers as well as meat lovers. The Prime rib and Lamb chops from their Grill section are also to try.
Tartaruga beach is another wonderful beach where you can go for a refreshing swim together with the sea turtles. One of the less boat-crowded beaches and a typical Brazilian beach with lots of bars, restaurants, and the convenience of the water taxis that can take you to the centre of Buzios. If you decide to visit in January, the beach is a bit overcrowded. If you are after hashed places, just go to the sides of the beach where the scenery and overall atmosphere is perfectly refreshing and relaxing.
Brava beach is a nice, less crowded beach with light sand and crystal-clear blue waters. Surrounded by beautiful nature you can go for a relaxing walk or even a nice hike. If you decide to visit a restaurant, try Rocka Beach Lounge & Restaurant. Very friendly staff and a menu that caters for everyone. Delicious salads (warm goat cheese and mango is good to try), meat dishes, and one that became our favourite was the catch of the day with mushroom risotto. All in all, when you visit Rocka you can expect top-notch fresh and tasty dishes, executed to perfection to satisfy even the fuzziest tastes. The friendly staff is always around when you need them. It is just a special place that makes you feel welcome and satisfied.
How to spend quality time in Paraty? This small and beautiful town has a historic centre district with cobble paved streets, and historic baroque churches built in the 17th and 18th centuries. So, just browsing around is relaxing and entertaining.
One of the good things about Paraty and its architecture is the fact that it has not been changed for more than 250 years. This gives the town a special unique and mystic character.
There are four main churches in Paraty that are worth visiting. Igreja Matriz Nossa Senhora do Remédios is the largest one and took two centuries to complete – from 1646 till 1873. It’s built on a land that was donated by Igreja Matriz Nossa Senhora do Remédios and she had two conditions – the first was to build a chapel in memory of Nossa Senhora do Remédios and the second was that no one can harm the local Indians living in the area at the time.
Local entertainment includes the Bourbon Jazz Festival which is happening in May and if you plan your visit in this period of the year you will have the chance to see it. It is organized in a typical Brazilian style with many names in jazz, blues, and soul not only from Brazil but from all over the world. The energetic and talented street performers’ steady presence gives a further authentic vibe to the famous festival.
Another quite interesting thing to see in Paraty is the street flooding which is happening once a month in a full moon when the current is high, and the sea level rises. The streets are flooded for a short period of time and the water doesn’t go more than 15 – 20 cm deep, so don’t worry, you won’t need a diving costume if it happens that you are in Paraty during a full moon.
Oh, and if you are in Paraty on Good Friday, please don’t fish. According to the legends fishing on this day is not recommended. A little chapel called Capela da Generosa was built in 1901 in memory of Teodoro. Teodoro, according to a legend was fishing in Perequê-Açu river on Good Friday where he drowned.
There is a lot to talk about the history of this small Brazilian jewel. Visit Paraty to see for yourself, touch, and feel the mystic of this splendid part of the world. Remember that our trip to Brazil started in Rio and the biggest NYE party in the world.
All behind the scenes images are provided by Mario Iliev’s YouTube travel channel.
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