Paraty is a fabulously picturesque colonial town on one of Brazil’s most beautiful stretches of coastline, the Costa Verde. The town itself, with its colorful old buildings and fishing boats, is dwarfed by the forest-covered mountains behind, which slope down to meet the blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
As well as the town itself, much of the Costa Verde, between Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, is worth exploring. Hundreds of tropical islands, including the magnificent Ilha Grande, pristine Atlantic rainforest with waterfalls tumbling down the mountainsides, and beaches galore make this one of the most beautiful parts of Brazil.
The rocky coast has many bays here and is sprinkled with around 60 islands and hundreds of secluded tropical beaches, many accessible only by boat. Trips to some of these can be arranged in the town.
fairy tales in paraty
Paraty used to be an important port for shipping gold from the mines of Minas Gerais to Europe. It retains the fort, churches and houses built during this period of affluence. The town is also famous for its festivals. Visitors come for the Festa do Divino Espirito Santo, which takes place 7 weeks after Easter, and the Festa de Nossa Senhora dos Remédios on September 8th. Carnaval in mid-March to mid-April, and the Festas Juninas throughout June are also popular festivals for dancing through the night on the town’s cobblestone streets. It isn’t always possible though as at very high tides, seawater fills some of Paraty’s streets!
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What not to miss in Paraty
Town of Paraty
A visit to the old town is an essential part of the charm and patrimony of exploring this quaint little village. South of Rio along “The Green Coast”, this Portuguese heritage is engraved in the building’s architecture that retains the distinctive colonial designs of white houses, and the paved roads that connect them with shiny colored doors and windows. Take a walk to the Santa Rita Church and its surrounding houses and take your time in absorbing the sights in the Matriz Square, but getting lost in the town of Paraty is easy and full of surprises.
Serra da Bocaina Park
The Serra da Bocaina National Park is located inland, from Paraty, provides a wonderful experience of the Serra do Mar landscape by foot, the national park stands as an incredible paradise with landscape ranging from mountains to beaches. Ecotourism in the Park is made out of the most diverse natural attractions that will make you have a unique experience of contact with nature. The mountain range gives us trekking opportunities along many of its mountains and along the ancient paved paths of the Gold Trail to the Atlantic coastline.
Ilha Grande is located some 150km southwest of Rio de Janeiro and is the archetypal tropical island paradise, scattered with a few lodges perfect for a romantic or family getaway. With one of the richest eco-systems in the world, the island’s dense Atlantic rainforest nurtures a varied plant and animal life, and its clear waters are home to an array of corals, tropical fish, penguins, and southern right whales. There are a great many simple trails and treks to explore the jungle and beaches, a great pitstop between Paraty and Rio de Janeiro.
One of Paraty ‘s most popular activities is to taking a voyage visiting some of the most beautiful natural paradisiacal wonders in its vicinity. Most boat tours leave the harbor at 11am, taking travelers out to experience some of the coastal beaches and small islands nearby. It offers an opportunity to visit Praia da Lula, Praia Vermelha and Praya de Sant Rita, known as the most beautiful beaches and coves in the area. It’s a great excuse to getaway, have some caipirinhas, and spend time snorkeling and exploring with other travelers.
Pico do Papagaio Trail
One of the most sought after hikes in the area is to the iconic Pico do Papagaio (Parrot Peak). This 7 mile (11km) hike takes around 10 or so hours round trip, with an increase in altitude of around 3,500+ ft. (1,000m). Take the main road from Abraao to Dois Rios to follow the trailhead, a steady ascent is the most challenging part of this trail, and the view is worth it. Expect to see monkeys and several different birds (miko and other small species), the “parrots beak” view is entirely worth it, as well as the change in flora and fauna, seeds, and trees along the path.
Rainforest & Waterfalls
Tour the surrounding waterfalls in the middle of the Atlantic jungle. Tarzan, Tobogã, Poços do Penha, Poço das Andorinhas are the most famous waterfalls and offer spectacular visuals and great swimming under the dense jungle’s exotic canopies. The Poço do Inglês is a quiet little pool with rope swing. Pedra Branca is a white waterfall frozen over rocks after Ponte Branca. A little more is the Sete Quedas – the 7 Drop – water is washing like a white vail. The circuit takes about three hours at various stations and is aroiund 4 km in length.
Rio de Janeiro
|Río de Janeiro, Estado de Río de Janeiro, Brasil||Rio de Janeiro is truly one of the world’s great cities. It is known to its people, the Cariocas, as the Marvelous City and every visitor to Rio will understand why. Much of that is due to the city’s unbeatable location, nestled between the deep blues of the Atlantic Ocean and Guanabara Bay and the dark greens of the forested mountains, and fringed by stunning golden beaches such as Ipanema and Copacabana.Read more…|
|Búzios, Estado de Río de Janeiro, Brasil||Búzios is one of the prettiest places in Brazil, and possibly in the world. Any visitor will be able to understand why it is regularly voted amongst the top ten most beautiful places on the planet. The romantic charm of Búzios is not just in the quaint old fishing village with its winding cobblestone streets and picturesque harbor. It occupies part of a small peninsula ringed by 25 beautiful tropical beaches. Read more…|
|Parati - Estado de Río de Janeiro, 23970-000, Brasil||Paraty is a fabulously picturesque colonial town on one of Brazil’s most beautiful stretches of coastline, the Costa Verde. The town itself, with its colorful old buildings and fishing boats, is dwarfed by the forest-covered mountains behind, which slope down to meet blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The rocky coast has many bays and sprinkled with over 60 islands and 100’s of secluded tropical beaches. Read more…|
|Foz do Iguaçu, Estado de Paraná, Brasil||Possibly the most picturesque waterfalls on earth. Unlike other great waterfalls, the majesty of Iguaçu is that the Iguaçu River drops around 328 ft (100m) into 275 separate Falls across its 0.6 mile (1km) width. Many of the Falls would be tourist attractions in their own right, but as a whole, the spectacle is as awe-inspiring as any of nature’s great sights. Read more…|
Manaus & the Amazon
|Manaos, Amazonas, Brasil||The idea of visiting the world’s biggest river and the rainforest that surrounds it attracts many adventurous travelers to Brazil. With over half of the world’s largest jungle found in Brazil, it is little wonder that the area’s main city, Manaus, serves as the nexus for most travelers who begin their adventures into Brazil’s lively Amazon Jungle. Read more…|
Southern Pantanal & Bonito
|Bonito, MS, 79290-000, Brasil||The world’s largest inland wetland, over half of it lies in Brazil, with Bolivia and Paraguay sharing the remainder. Wildlife viewing here is always spectacular as unobstructed views of large areas of the flooded plains make it possible to spot jaguars, pumas, wolves, deer, anteaters, armadillos, monkeys, around 650 species of bird, and 250 species of fish. Read more…|
Salvador de Bahia
|Salvador de Bahía - Bahía, Brasil||Salvador is the heartbeat of Brazil’s African culture with rhythms, dances, clothes, food and beliefs all imported, along with the people, from the continent across the Atlantic Ocean. The majority of Africans were taken to Brazil as slaves to work on sugar and coffee plantations in Salvador, the first capital of Brazil. Read more…|
Lençóis & Chapada Diamantina
|Chapada Diamantina, Andaraí - State of Bahia, 46750-000, Brasil||Nature doesn’t get much better than Chapada da Diamantina, and luckily isn’t flooded with tourists. So the only distractions from mountain scenery are natural: orchids and bromeliads; butterflies the size of your hand; monkeys; alligators; deer; and possibly even jaguars can be seen amongst the trees. Read more…|
Depending on your client’s preferences, we can help you determine the best experiences tailored for your clients. From where to visit, when to go, what to do and how to get there safely, our travel experts will help you create an experience your clients will love.
Best times to visit Paraty
Paraty and the Costa Verde lie just north of the Tropic of Capricorn. The climate is therefore fairly stable, with most days around 86˚F (30˚C). The rainy season is from December to March, which is also the hottest time, both for weather and for the festivals. The winter months of June to August are slightly cooler but there will be plenty of summer days without rain, and some winter days with tropical downpours for an hour. This part of Brazil is never far away from the sun though, and for most of the time, it is truly beautiful!
HOW TO GET THERE
Paraty and the Costa Verde lie on the coast around 4 hours or 124 miles (200km) from both Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. The best way to get to the area is to fly into one of the airports of these cities, which are served by many direct scheduled flights from Europe, the US and other cities in South America. The rest of the journey has to be made by road, but the route is spectacular in both directions with jungle on one side and beaches, sea and islands on the other.
The coastal road is generally well maintained and metered taxis are available to take you to places out of Paraty. Local bus services run up and down the coast to Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, and also up and down the hills to other small beach towns. Hiring a car in one of the two big cities to drive around the area is an excellent option for those who are prepared to first negotiate the traffic and other problems of driving in Brazil’s metropolises. This will give you more options to see the various parts of the coast, and stop at the places you prefer, and there are many opportunities to stop and admire the scenery around Paraty and the Costa Verde!
WHERE TO STAY
Paraty has hotels to cater for everybody, from quaint budget places to those in huge colonial houses frequented by celebrities from Brazil and beyond. The view from the bedrooms can be stunning, even in cheaper places. There are many delightful restaurants in the old town, with seafood being a definite specialty of the area.
More highlights of Brazil
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