Paraty, Brazil is a tiny coastal Brazilian town, approximately 4 hours south of Rio de Janeiro. Sergio and I decided to make a road trip for a few days to this historic town known for its Portuguese colonial architecture.
The streets of Paraty date back to the mid to late 1600’s and provide a romantic backdrop to the green, lush mountains and blue/green waters of the South Atlantic. In addition to walking the stone paved streets of Paraty, one should hire a boat to see some of the many beautiful islands and beaches that are just a quick boat ride away.
Our slow moving but comfortable boat that provided ample shade to keep my pale skin from blistering from the unyielding sun, while we cruised around the harbor for more than 5 hours one day. Below are a few photos of Paraty and our boat ride.
I feel as if the board of tourism for Rio should offer me a free stay at The Copacabana Palace for all the hype I’m providing this city, but I love Rio and can’t help myself. Rio de Jaeneiro has no shortage of famous, beautiful beaches, but I tend to spend most of my time at the gay section of Ipanema Beach. I feel more comfortable here and the people watching is great. Last week at this time, my butt was firmly planted on the sand of Ipanema Beach. Here are a few photos of me relaxing with Sergio and friends at Rio’s gay beach.
If you have an upcoming trip to Rio de Janeiro or travel to Brazil planned, feel free to reach out to me.
Perhaps the most famous beach in Rio de Janeiro is Copacabana. The beach offers spectacular views of one of Rio’s most famous sites, Sugar Loaf. The 4 kilometer long beach (~2.5 miles) is one of my favorites. I’ve included a few photos to give you a glimpse of this beautiful beach.
The large ‘rock’ in the background is Sugar Loaf.
The black and white swirl you see behind Sergio on the sidewalk represents two rivers from the Amazon that Copacabana Beach has adopted as its own.
Not exactly an image of Copacabana beach but representative of what you’ll see.
Giant sandcastles that span 10′ proudly display some of Rio’s most famous sites.
Having just returned from spending two weeks in Brazil, I thought I’d share some thoughts about dining in Rio de Janeiro. The biggest difference I’ve noticed since my last visit is that prices have risen dramatically. Kilogram restaurants (places where you pay by the weight of food on your plate) continue to be the most affordable. Of all the kilogram restaurants my favorite remains, Frontera on Visconde de Piraja in Ipanema (approximately 2 blocks from the gay beach in Rio).
For a nicer option check out a French creperie in Copacabana called Le Ble Noir on Rua Xavier da Silveira. The over sized crepes are delicious and is worth trying.
Confeitaria Colombo in Rio is in some ways what Cafe du Monde is to New Orleans. In recent years they have opened a second location at the Fort in Copacabana Beach called “Cafe do Forte” near Posto 6 (where Copacabana ends and just before Ipanema). Making reservations and requesting an outdoor table for brunch or dinner will afford you fantastic views of Copacabana Beach and Sugar Loaf.
A popular option in Ipanema is Zaza Bistro on Rua Joana Angélica. I first ate here about 4 years ago and when I asked friends in Rio for dining suggestions for this trip, Zaza was repeatedly mentioned.
There also remain a handful of restaurants two blocks from the gay beach in Ipanema on Farme de Amoeda; starting with Si Senor, Cafeina, Rota 66 (Route 66), and To Nem Ai. Cafeina makes for a good breakfast option but for the most part the food at these places is best not discussed. To Nem Ai is the most popular for grabbing a drink after the beach, to people watch or start your evening.
For additional tips about dining in Brazil contact me directly and I’ll be happy to provide additional insight.
After spending nearly two weeks in Brazil, Sergio and I are heading back to Boston (please don’t be cold, please don’t be cold…) It has been fun and I look forward to writing more about the vacation.
After spending a week in Rio de Janeiro, Sergio and I packed up to drive to Paraty, Brazil – a Portuguese colonial town on the coast approximately 2.5 – 3 hours drive South from Rio de Janeiro. I plan to completely decompress by sleeping constantly, reading when I’m awake and doing nothing more strenuous than ordering a cold beverage from the beach.
This marks the last leg of the trip for Sergio and me before we drive back on Friday to fly back home to Boston. While I’m looking forward to returning home, I have to admit I’ll miss the sun and warmth. I’ll write more about that and my other adventures after I return home, but until then you can read about last year’s trip to Florianopolis, Brazil.
Praia Mole: Where the gays are
Jurere and Jurere International
Bistro Isadora Duncan Suite
Today is the first full day that I am in Rio de Janeiro. A couple from Boston arrives here later today, and we’ll spend the week hanging out and enjoying all that Rio can offer, but this morning Sergio and I will be down at the gay beach in Ipanema; just a short walk from the apartment we’ve rented. I hope you have a wonderful day.
Every large city has that one gay club that has been there forever and for Rio de Janeiro that is Le Boy. Anyone who spends any amount of time in Rio is bound to find themselves here.
I remember my first visit to this gay club nearly a decade ago. In pictures it is hard to distinguish it from any other gay nightclub but don’t let that fool you. Brazilians are quite good at having a fun night out and if you come to Rio a visit to Le Boy is definitely in order. We’ll be going here later this weekend and I’m looking forward to it.
I arrived in Belo Horizonte this past Saturday but today Sergio and I leave his family and head down to Rio de Janeiro for a week of fun in the sun. Rio is one of my favorite cities to visit, but I’ve not been here since the fall of 2008.
I’m looking forward to relaxing along Ipanema Beach and checking out what has changed since my last visit.
This afternoon I leave to fly to Brazil where I will meet up with Sergio in his hometown, Belo Horizonte. I’ll spend a few days with his family then early next week we’ll head to Rio de Janeiro.
I’ve missed you Rio. I’m looking forward to seeing you again.
Lonely Planet has named Brazil the most exciting place to visit in 2014, and I totally agree. Brazil is preparing for two of the world’s premiere sporting events, 2014 FIFA World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics.
In a little more than three weeks I will be flying back down to Brazil where I’ll spend a few days in Belo Horizonte to visit family. I’ll then fly over to Rio de Janeiro where Sergio and I will spend a week with a couple we’ve become friendly with over the past 18 months then just the two of us will drive down to Paraty; a Portuguese colonial village on the water three hours south of Rio for some rest and relaxation before heading home.
My trip to Florianopolis Brazil in 2012
Want to see what other destinations rounded out Lonely Planet’s top ten destinations to visit in 2014? Link here: Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2014.
My connections to Brazil continue to grow stronger so I am only too happy to share what looks like a fun party that will take place in Belo Horizonte, Brazil this Saturday, October 12th at the Music Hall. Are you in Brazil or do you have friends there? Please feel free to share.
Di Latte (Milk) features four DJs: Danny Verde from Italy, Edu Quintas from The Week, ROBIX from Rio de Janeiro and ALESS from Belo Horizonte.
Pronounced Para-chee, this quiet coastal town just a few hours drive from Rio de Janeiro is where I will spend several relaxing days and nights after what I’m sure will be a fun week in Rio de Janeiro in late November / early December.
You may recall that last year’s trip to Brazil took me to Florianopolis or “Floripa” as Brazilians call it. I’ll have more to share about Paraty in the coming months and after I return but until then you can read about my trip to Florianopolis here:
Praia Mole: Where the gays are
Jurere and Jurere International
Bistro Isadora Duncan Suite
Are you contemplating a trip to South America’s largest (and in my opinion most beautiful) country? Have questions about Brazil? Feel free to shoot me an email at email@example.com or leave a comment.
It is official, last week Sergio and I booked our tickets to Brazil and we will be returning to Rio de Janeiro in late November / early December for some rest and relaxation – and I can’t wait.
I have not been in Rio since 2008 and that is far too long to wait. Rio is one of the most amazing cities I’ve ever visited. This aerial photo over the shoulders of the Corcovado overlooking the city pretty much says it all doesn’t it?
Carnaval celebrations in Brazil start tonight and will conclude on Tuesday. Nowhere is the party more impressive than in Rio de Janeiro where according to Wikipedia, the festival brings out more than 2 million people everyday.