Jet lag is an evil thing. But sometimes waking up really can result in a big affection towards a visited place . That was the story with me and Paraty. This small coastal town was the first place I properly stayed in during my recent trip to South America (I don’t count Sao Paulo as I was there only for a night and did a very quick walk around) and I just couldn’t have asked for a better introduction to the region! I knew I couldn’t miss it in my Brazil itinerary! As soon as my bus reached the Atlantic Ocean coast I was more and more falling in love with what I’ve seen! Perfect white sandy beaches hidden in the shadow of palm trees, turquoise waters of the ocean, lush forests… On top of that was Paraty – probably the most picturesque town of South America!
Paraty has a long and rich history of Portuguese colonialism and Brazilian imperialism and used to be an important center of gold mines. That left a huge impact in the town’s architecture that still can be admired in the historical old town – some buildings are as old as 250 years (which is a lot in this side of the world!). Even if this part of the town isn’t very big it is sated with places that can take a breath away – churches, fancy houses or cobbled lanes. And all of these are painted in mix of white and vibrant colors!
I went for a quick walk around in the late afternoon on my first day and already loved the old town from the very first sight. Even if it was slightly busy with tourists wandering around and heading to the numerous restaurants for dinner, one of the most beautiful sunsets ever gave the place a magical feel. But it was even better on the next morning! I set off to explore the old quarter after 6am when the town was slowly waking up, ready to welcome a new, beautiful day. I slowly wandered every single street, falling for Paraty more and more with each step. The historic old town is closed to vehicles so for most of the time I had place only to myself, there where even no local people hurrying to work. I could see everything the way I wanted, at my own pace and that could have been the reason why I loved the place so very much!
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Paraty turned out to be the most beautiful town I’ve seen in South America (and is definitely in the top 5 of all my travels!) and was a perfect place to relax after the long journey and before the craziness of Rio de Janeiro. I just wish I could have stayed longer as there’s so much to do in the area, not just wandering the historical old town. There’s the forest to hike to, islands to take the boat to or just beautiful sandy beaches to relax at. Well, if I ever return to Brazil I’ll make sure to spend more time in Paraty and fully enjoy the place!
Let me take you for the walk through the historical old town of Paraty. Isn’t it just the prettiest?
What was the most beautiful coastal town you’ve ever visited?
If you think of visiting Brazil or just want to read more about the country take a look what else I wrote about it:
- Bohemian Rio de Janeiro – Santa Teresa
- Incredible Iguazu Falls, Brazil/Argentina in pictures
- So Rio de Janeiro didn’t blow me away…
- and more!
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