Thursday, 14 May 2009

Angra dos Reis to Paraty

There were no cash machines on Ilha Grande and by the time we got to Angra dos Reis, we were completely out of money. We frantically started searching for a cash machine which would work. The queues for cash machines are phenomenal here and, just because it has the Visa sign, it doesn't mean that it will take your Visa card. The machines are also the slowest we've used in the world. After a stressful 30 minutes and four banks later, we finally struck gold.

Needing an energy boost before catching the bus to Paraty, we tucked into our lanchonete snack of pasties and cheesy croissants. We watched old gents sitting and chatting away on a bench across the street. Everyone was very relaxed and not in a hurry.

As we arrived in beautiful town of Paraty, we got a bit confused while trying to find our hostel in the historic centre. The old town is a laid out in a grid of streets, each lined with almost identical looking stone houses. The streets are known by a couple of different names, so none of the names on the map matched the ones on the street corners. So we thought we knew where we were, but we couldn't match anything with the map. Useless. Luckily we were right about our location, and the hostel appeared round the next corner. Phew. Walking around is also fun when the tide comes in. It covers some of the streets with water, blocking your way.

Luckily the barbecue in the evening sorted everything out. It was cooked by William Wallace, an ex-Brazilian special forces guy with a penchant for putting guests who didn't believe his name in a head lock. Regardless, it was one of the best places we've stayed in, with an atmospheric courtyard and rustic feel.

Paraty has the best-named ice cream bar in the world - Sorve Terapia or Ice Cream Therapy. It's a pick and mix shop where you load up your cone/bucket with ice cream, toppings, wafers and sprinkles then pay by the kilo. Makes you feel good about yourself after a 20 minute session.


Uncle John and Auntie Liz said...

Hello you two again!
Probably the last time I'll be writing on your BLOG :-(
That sounds a stressful start where you are!!!
The BBQ looks like your Uncle John's breakfast! well nearly.
The ice cream therepy reminds me of when we visited Florida years ago.We had ice creams like that. Yummy.
Uncle John is looking forward to you buying him a pint soon.
See you Saturday (that sounds unbelievable saying that...)
Have a safe and good journey back to the UK.
Love from Uncle John and Auntie Liz xx xx