Month: June 2018

(All I Wanna Say is That) The Weather Don’t Really Care About Us (PART 2)| Salvador, Brazil ~ Day 12

(PART 2 OF A TWO-PART STORY – HERE IS PART 1) * To our total shock horror, when we stepped out of the restaurant, it was gloriously sunny outside, with no sign of rain. WTF BRAZIL. Without questioning it, I whipped out my damp camera and started snapping everything I could, even getting ‘blessed’ by a man wearing a beautifully patterned robe and holding holy water in one hand and a bunch of, I assume holy, leaves in the other. I had no idea what was happening here. Despite the sudden turn of events, I could feel my poor skin begin to sizzle in the sun, still feeling the literal burn of Itacaré. Street photography turned into a sudden dash to the car to retrieve my suncream, but alas, my skin wasn’t yet to be saved; coming from just up the road, I could recognise that distinctive twanging sound of the berimbau anywhere, following by the beating of the acabate and choral singing. Capoeiristas were practising and playing music in the very square we had …

(All I Wanna Say is That) The Weather Don’t Really Care About Us (PART 1)| Salvador, Brazil ~ Day 12

Rain and thunder provided the soundtrack to our morning in our beautiful Airbnb. I walked out onto the drenched terrace barefoot to look at the beautiful pink flowers, which were now flopping sadly from the bush they grew from, and at the horizon, which was engulfed in fog with no sun in sight. I figured, as long as I wasn’t sick then nothing was going to ruin this day, no matter how much rain. We rushed out, needing to cram as much into the day as possible, first heading up the cute road we were staying on to one area with a park in the centre and a large majestic white church to the right – Paróquia de Santo Antônio. Right ahead, behind the park, was Forte de Capoeira, a historic fortress dedicated to the history and practice of Capoeira (an Afro-Brazilian martial art, which is like a fight and a dance at the same time). It seemed completely empty when we arrived, the early morning and rain probably being the main culprit. We walked …

An Afro-Brazilian Jewel | Salvador, Brazil ~ Day 11 (Evening)

I don’t know how and why but the journey back from a place always seems way shorter than a journey to a place. You would think it would be the opposite way around… the anticipation gone, with maybe a little misery in the air as to the passing moments of joy… On that sunny and positive thought, we finally arrived back in Salvador after 4 hours of driving and another hour on the ferry back to the port of the city from Ilha de Itaparica. The sun set as we left the harbour in Bom Despacho, and we sat on the floor of the ferry ‘balcony’ watching the landscape turn from a bright blue to a beautiful magenta, then purple, then navy blue speckled with clouds and stars. It should’ve only been a ten-minute ride to our Airbnb from the harbour, but oh boy nothing could’ve prepared us for the spaghetti that is the roads and streets of Salvador. Maybe 40 minutes later we actually got to the place, thoroughly infuriated after missing nearly every …

How Chocolate is Made! A Cocoa Farm Adventure | Itacaré, Brazil ~ Day 11

We had a mere few hours left in Itacaré, those of which were filled with heavy rain and uncertainty as to whether to head straight to Salvador or hang around and visit one last place that I had in mind: Vila Rosa. Itacaré belongs to the ‘cocoa coast’ and, until recently, the town’s livelihood and history was very intimately connected to cocoa production. The town actually was a notorious hangout for Dutch and Portuguese pirates during the early colonial period and then later became a haven for cocoa plantations. When on a boat sailing through the river running next to the town, and then through Brazil, you’ll spot acres and acres of cocoa farms, boasting as much cocoa as you can possibly imagine. One farm of which belonging to Vila Rosa, a historic house only 30 minutes driving away from Itacaré.  It was pouring down with rain and we had to make a snap decision whilst driving out of the town. At Vila Rosa, you could head on an amazing cocoa farm tour for only 50 …

A Tropical Tale (PART 2) | Itacaré, Brazil ~ Day 10

*FOR PART 1 HEAD HERE* * Totally starved after our magical hike to Prainha beach in Itacaré, we ventured to the main road of the town which is filled with bars and restaurants and shops. At the nearest end of the road was La Cabana Restaurant, recommended to us by our tour guide for amazing Bahian food. Having been awfully sick the past few days, we were terrified of eating anything too crazy (basically anything that wasn’t a can of guarana or crisps). It had been two days or so since, so we took our chances and ordered a tropical meal fit for a queen; a piece of meaty white grilled fish with a passionfruit sauce, rice steamed with mango and fresh grilled vegetables. The sweet meaty fish seemed crazy to be paired with the creamy, tangy and fruity passionfruit sauce. After having not eaten for a few days, my tastebuds were totally overwhelmed. The rice was… fruity?!?! What was this abomination?! The only flavour I could recognise came from the grilled red peppers, aubergines …

A Tropical Tale (PART 1) | Itacaré, Brazil ~ Day 9

Birds sang their early morning songs amongst the coconut palms surrounding the little house we awoke in, a rooster crowing in the distance and the faint rustling of the locals waking up and going about their daily routines echoed in the area. I climbed up to the small rooftop of the house to soak in the morning, taking a peek at the disorderly houses surrounding ours, spotting chickens, guava trees and all manners of items hanging from windows. The sky was cloudy, of course, but hey, at least it wasn’t raining… with this news, we made a speedy exit in the car, armed with our beach gear once again, ready to take advantage of the only full day we had in Itacaré. A crazy dog that was waiting for us outside our house hahahhahaha. We drove toward Resende beach and Tiririca beach, as we had the previous day, but decided to explore a little further, there being one long road connecting the main beaches on the coast. Where the road ended was a stunning closed …

A Slice of Paradise | Itacaré, Brazil ~ Day 8

We awoke in our Ibis hotel in Salvador, like daisies springing from a freshly mowed lawn in Summer. The room ceased to spin and my stomach had finally stopped doing backflips. Finally, it was time to go on holiday. (If you’re behind the times we were horribly ill for like 5 days and now we are finally seeing the light… of health, not death… *cough*) It was bright and early in Salvador, the capital of the glorious state of Bahia in Brazil, and we packed up everything ready to head to Itacaré (where we should’ve been the night before). We rushed to get back to the airport, only 10 minutes away, to pick up a rental car to begin our 5-hour journey. A small town on the coast of Bahia, south of Salvador, Itacaré promised beautiful white-sanded beaches, un-adulterated nature, tropical food and, overall, a tranquil paradise – the very words two very sick people needed to hear. A five-hour journey might seem like a crazy journey, but throw in a peaceful ferry ride in …

Peril in Petrolina | Petrolina, Brazil ~ Day 5, 6, 7

The fifth day in Brazil arrived and we bid adieu to a rain-drenched city, flooding before our very eyes as we gathered our belongings and fled to the airport. At least we left at a good time (or arrived at a terrible one… it’s a cup half full/empty sort of situation). We were heading to Petrolina, another city in Pernambuco, toward the West, all feeling truly wrecked from the flu that had stricken us, some more than others. I had yet to feel the worst of it, but my naive self thought I could fight it off with positive thinking (and lemon meringue pie). Little did I know I was the next unwilling victim… Some SERIOUSLY delicious Brazilian juice! As a budget traveller, these will be your new best friend. Lovely weather. Lemon meringue pie. HUGE carnival puppets. * We ascended and descended pretty much instantaneously, the flight taking a little less than an hour, which was good news for our weakened bodies. The dry heat of Petrolina came as a shock from the stormy …