Paraty (August 9- 12, 2016)
Paraty is a cute colonial town. The small town doesn't have much to do besides walking around the small area, checking out the viewpoint, and chilling at the beach. We were there during winter time, which for that region means shorts and t-shirt during the peak daytime and then long pants and jacket for the rest of the day. Maybe even triple layer during nighttime outside. My temperature gauge might have been skewed since I got sick!
I had a slight fever and headache. Being sick is inconvenient. But who wants to get sick during travels or ever? At least the hostel was top notch for an ill person. Yes, there were too many people roaming around, which inhibits privacy and a relaxing atmosphere, but they had a movie room. I got to lay down and play Netflix on the hostel's big projector screen. Besides working staff, most hostel occupants were out during the day. Unfortunately, noisy guests would join me watching a movie in the evening. Besides that, they couldn't respect other people while watching a movie, they also smoked weed outside (yes, the staff included). So I would get a strong whiff of that stench every once in a while. They were friendly people though. They even rescued a kitten that other people were abusing on the beach. So I got to cuddle with this few week old kitten. So adorable! Made me miss my cat at home.
If I wasn't sick, we would have done day excursions to places nearby. For a dollar bus ride one way, we could have gone to two spots, one with a waterfall and another with a flat rock in the water that we could have slid on. The rock place seemed like a fun place to visit, but I'll probably never know for sure. The explorations I did in town were enough for me, since whenever I was conquering a slight incline up, my headache would spike and I would also have a hard time breathing.
Even though I hadn't fully recovered yet, we moved to another town to continue doing nothing much. Why? Because the locals were celebrating the cachaça festival. Cachaça is a popular Brazilian alcohol. Paraty has fourteen cachaça distilleries around. Locals are proud of being the main cachaça producer and celebrate this festival every year. This brings in more outsiders. Hence the hostel price increased for the weekend and we would have had to deal with an abnormal number of drunk people. Not the description of fun for budget conscious, non-drinkers. At least we got to see another place in Brazil.
Angra Dos Reis (August 12- 15, 2016)
Compared to the colonial Paraty’s white houses with color accents, most houses in Angra dos Reis were painted one solid color per building, but various colors overall. As I mentioned before, I was still sick. So we slowly strolled to some attractions. They do have an island there that's supposed to be amazingly beautiful, but we passed on that. What we did see where the statues of three kings, the waterfront, and an old convent (Convent of San Bernardino and Chapel of St. Anthony) that's now used as meeting space.
The statues were a 15-minute walk away from our hostel. They are quite impressive in size. The pathway to the statues mostly took us along the waterfront which was nice to see. We eventually made our way onto the docks to see a nice tranquil view of the colorful town. We would have sat down and enjoyed the view longer if not for the threat. We were afraid to be bombarded. Lots of birds happened to gather above us when we wanted to sit down. I'm white enough without their help. So we moved on.
One of our next spots was the old convent apparently has lots of interesting history; they even provide a tour for interested tourists. We just walked through the building ourselves. Some of the sections were in ruins or maybe never had a roof. My favorite part is that a group was using the rooms to teach Capoeira, which is a martial art that utilizes dance movements and is all about flow. If you are interested in watching a YouTube video demonstrating Capoeira click here. No, I'm not in video. It's just a random clip I chose.
We also chose to attend an orchestra concert here. The hostel we stayed at gave us a list of activities and events happening during our visit. At this point my illness has shifted to a cold and violent coughing. I got lots of cough-drops to avoid interrupting the performance, but there was no worry of interrupting though. We googled the building location and imputed the address in my phone maps app, but the destination ended up being residential apartments. Definitely not the spot for a concert. Even if we would have gotten the actual address at this point, we wouldn't have arrived on time. We didn't want to be rude, so we returned back to the hostel confused.
Not everything goes as planned. That's why flexibility is such an important virtue as a backpacker. We have learned to go with the flow. Sometimes the stuff we didn't plan end up being the best happenings for our current destination, but we don't always realize that until after we leave. For example, we didn't know we would be in Brazil during the Olympics. Our next place is Rio, the city hosting the Olympics this year. We are worried about spiked prices there, but maybe we were able see a game? Read the post on Rio next to find out! Some points might shock you!
Cost breakdown of Paraty (3 days with total cost of $62.66. Average daily cost is $20.89.)
- Hostel: $22.94 (3 nights which incl. breakfast)
- Transportation: $18.72 (initial bus to the town)
- Food: $21.00
- Meals: $9.17 (2 meals)
- Groceries: $11.83
Cost breakdown of Angra dos Reis (3 days with total cost of $61.99. Average daily cost is $20.66.)
- Hostel: $45.87 (3 nights which incl. breakfast)
- Transportation: $3.82 (initial bus to the town)
- Food: $12.30
- Meals: $3.36 (1 meal)
- Groceries: $8.94