We have bought return flights to Rio de Janeiro, but at first it will only be a short ‘pit stop’ in the city. At the airport, a pre-booked taxi is waiting, which takes us directly to the small port city of Conceição de Jacareì, which is a 2-hour drive southwest of Rio. From here we sail flux on to:
The 193 km2 island of Ilha Grande is the largest in the area and is referred to as Brazil’s bounty island. Here are neither cars nor major roads, but plenty of hiking trails winding through the mountainous jungle and out to the island’s 102 unspoilt beaches.
I sailed along the palm-clad coast almost 20 years ago when I first visited Brazil, and have since dreamed of going ashore. My 19-year-old I remember it as enchantingly beautiful! So now I hope that the memory – and the many anecdotes I have poured on Martin over the years – live up to reality.
The historic port city will be the next stop on the route. The trip goes by boat and bus along the lush coast, which is also called “Costa Verde” (the green coast). The coastline is known for being Brazil’s most beautiful and surrounds Paraty with scenic surroundings: wooded mountain landscapes, tropical beaches and an idyllic archipelago, where in the old days the pirates hid from the Portuguese.
You do not have to check many travel guides before you discover that Paraty tops all the ‘must-see’ lists in Brazil. In addition to the scenic landscapes, the city houses some of the world’s best-preserved colonial architecture. In pictures, the cobbled and car-free streets look like something from a historical film, where guys like Zorro jump down from red brick roofs, free the population from greedy rich people and charm Latino-delicious beauties.
We strongly doubt whether our stay in Paraty will be as action-packed, but we look forward to experiencing the beautiful city before taking the bus on to:
With over 20 million inhabitants, São Paulo is the largest city in the southern hemisphere. That in itself is a fact that arouses our curiosity. In addition, the colossal concrete jungle is also Marcela’s hometown before she moved to Copenhagen. So we can hardly wish for a better guide when we meet the future couple in the gigabyte.
After an evening in São Paulo, we drive with Marcela and Johan to her parents’ cottage at the town of Piracicaba, approx. 2 hours drive from São Paulo. Here begins the warm-up to the highlight of the whole journey:
We have no doubt that the next four days will be a bubbly, fun and samba dancing experience! For there is one thing that the Brazilians are known for, it is that they are fabulous to party! And that’s exactly what the couple has planned for us.
For the occasion, they have rented a hotel where there is room for the party’s 300 guests (yes, you read that right – three hundred!) Contrary to the Danish wedding party traditions, we are not seated on a multi-course menu and must not pay attention to home-brewed songs and long speeches.
No no, a large buffet with Brazilian delicacies and an open cocktail bar will ensure that the party guests have the energy to keep the dance floor going all night long. We have to go out and shake R…! What’s not to like?
From São Paulo to Rio de Janeiro
For the next 8 days we have no concrete plans. We think we will take a few days in São Paulo with some Danish friends and then travel on to Rio de Janeiro. Then you have good tips for cool places, good hotels, delicious restaurants, beautiful beaches, etc. – then we would love to hear from you!