bad for the budget, good for the soul

I know I like to make out that actually this travelling business is really quite hard work; overcoming language barriers, constantly meeting new people, navigating new places, buying bus tickets, finding food, somewhere to stay. Well I’m currently in Paraty on the Costa Verde, the Green Coast south of Rio and for the first time since I arrived in south america I truly feel like I’m on holiday. I caught the bus down from Sao Paulo¬†two days ago and arrived in this unbelievably cute, laid back small town full on old white buildings with brightly coloured door and window frames, cobbled streets and a beautiful bay with green turquoise water stretching out into a bay dotted with tiny, jungle covered islands.

Paraty

The hostel is lovely and right on the river front but my room which I’m sharing with three other girls is so small it’s hysterical! There’s Hettie from Somerset, Loreto from Chile and Karina from Portugal who has now become my official translator for the bad Brazilian Novellas on TV that are strangely addictive! They introduced me to an amazing dessert here called Acai, it’s made from amazonian fruit made into a pulp which they turn into either ice cream or a type of hot porridge stuff which you eat with granola, chopped bananas and honey, oh my god it’s sooooo good! Later the four of us went out for a quiet caiparinha which was rather strong and we were sitting peacefully outside a bar when we were accosted by a group of Brazilian boys, all studying german and all dressed up as rather passable women! The last thing I expected to see in Brazil was a group of 18 year olds in drag speaking german! Within about half an hour we were all in the bar over the road dancing and drinking and the Brazilian’s definitely love to dance and the caiparinhas with cinnamon and cloves are bloody delicious!

Island beaches, Paraty

Yesterday we all headed out on a boat tour to visit some of the island beaches dotted around the bay. We sunbathed on the roof of the boat, went diving off jetties, snorkelled in clear deep waters and wandered along palm fringed, yellow sandy beaches, life is tough I tell you! Then today I ventured a little further afield and got a bus to the nearby fishing town of Trinade in search of a nice beach I’d been recommended. Unfortunately following a friendly looking dog that seemed to know where it was going I took an unfortunate detour through the jungle and was hiking barefoot up and down tree roots and streams for nearly 40 minutes when I realised the beach was not supposed to be this far away! Got back and found the right path and finally made it to the beach. It was lovely but sadly by now the clouds had decided to settle over the hills so I had a lovely afternoon reading just without much sun!

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