A Travellerspoint blog

Freedom Bar Reggae Parties

Canoa Quebrada, Brazil

sunny 30 °F
View South of the Equator on ReneeL's travel map.

DSC03901.jpgThe best nightlife in all of Nordeste, at least according to the locals of Canoa Quebrada, is indeed in Canoa Quebrada. Every weekend Broadway, the principle street, is lined with transportable bars staggered between a Reggae Bar, a Disco tech, a Forró dance club, restaurants, and the ever popular Caverna Bar which is usually filled with elderly, foreign men and attractive, young, Brazilian girls.

The party usually commences right around midnight and during high season there is barely room to breathe anywhere on Broadway between the Reggae bar and Caverna. Sometime around 2:00am the traffic starts to make its way up the crowded street, past the plaza, and through an almost hidden pathway between the clay colored cliffs, which are illuminated by the reflection of the bond fire, and eventually down to the beach where you are greeted by the sounds of Reggae music.

I spent many a nights on this beach, at this party, with these people, dancing to Reggae music, and sipping on caipirinhas. At 6am when the sky starts to lighten and the music stops you get this feeling as if some sacred ritual is about to begin as everyone gathers along the beach and on the balcony of the Freedom Bar and waits for the sun to rise above the deep blue horizon.

Posted by ReneeL 09:41 Archived in Brazil Comments (1)

The Place Where the People Meet

Canoa Quebrada, Brazil

sunny 30 °F
View South of the Equator on ReneeL's travel map.

DSC03802.jpgThe barraca and jangada lined beaches of Canoa Quebrada are surely not the prettiest I have seen in Brazil, but sure felt like home after 6 weeks of sunbathing on them. During low tide sand dollars and small fish left by the local fisherman lay across the mud-like sand and all of the Brazilians gather around for a game of futbol.

There definitely was something special about Canoa Quebrada, the symbol of which is a crescent moon and a star (which I was informed by a Turkish fella I had met was similar to the Turkish flag). If you were to ask any of the natives the meaning behind the symbol you would probably hear a couple different variations of the fisherman story, of how the first fisherman to arrive in the area now known as Canoa Quebrada had looked up into the sky and had seen a crescent moon with a star laying closely inside of it.

One Italian guy I had met described Canoa as "the place where the people meet," while others have said there is a strange, indescribable energy that attracts you to Canoa Quebrada. I, like many others, was strangely attracted to Canoa and decided to spend some time there enjoying the beautiful sunsets on the sand dunes, the extremely warm people, and the reggae music filled evenings.

Posted by ReneeL 18:03 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Almost too Nice to Leave

Pipa, Brazil

sunny 88 °F
View South of the Equator on ReneeL's travel map.

Pipa__11_.jpgAhhhhhh, Pipa. I decided to pass through Recife and Olinda. I just couldn´t handle another large city after spending the last 24 hours on 5 buses and a metro, even though I was a bit curious to see what Recife was all about after reading "A Death in Brazil" by Peter Robb (great book to read if planning on going to Brazil). Besides I only had a week to spare before my good friend Jill from Arizona would be joining me in Brazil, so Pipa it was!!!!

Pipa is just one of those places you just don´t want to leave. Gorgeous, dolphin filled beaches, beautiful clay colored cliffs, fun nightlife, nice people, and of course great local food!!! I spent my first week in Pipa with an English lady, Miranda, and her daughter, Ella. Really lovely people. The majority of the days we would walk down to Praia de Golfinho (about a 20 minute walk from the Vilma Hostel which is a great little hostel, I think they have 8 rooms there and they serve a fantastic breakfast), and play around in the water with the family of dolphins that live there.

I also found a great little restaurant with a sign in the front advertising a plate for R$7,00 (that´s only $3.50!!). Really simple, but good food!!!

Posted by ReneeL 15:31 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Stuck on an Island in the Middle of a Rainstorm

Morro de São Paulo

rain 78 °F
View South of the Equator on ReneeL's travel map.

DSC01434.jpgAfter another exhausting travel schedule- 8 hr. bus ride from Porto Seguro to Valença, ETA in Valença 4:00am, wait at rodoviaría til daylight 6:00am, follow a South African guy from rodoviaría to port, wait until 7:00am to catch a boat ride to the small village of Morro de São Paulo on Ilha Tinharé, ETA 7:30am- I arrive in Morro de São Paulo dazed and confused.

I wake up from my nap sometime around 3-3:30ish starving and finally ready to find my way around Morro de São Paulo and the nearest place for a late lunch. I head down the path over a small bridge of some sort and come to a sign. The arrow pointing left says "Vila" and the arrow pointing right says "Praias." Not knowing where either would take me I choose to head towards the Vila. It looked closer than the Praias according to my hand drawn map I had copied off of a website prior to arriving in Morro de São Paulo. No interesting restaurants. I decide to head back and try my only other option, Praias.

I make it down to Rua Mestre Domingos and turn right. I notice the shops are much nicer on this street. Much nicer than in the Vila and continue to make my way down to the Segunda Praia. I pass by a few fancier looking restaurants, pousadas, and more shops. I decide to head back to a local looking restaurant located just above the Rua Mestre Domingos that seemed safe enough for a late lunch and more within the budget.

As I was enjoying my typical Brazilian meal (rice, beans, salad, and in this case fish) I didn´t notice that I had been staring at a long haired guy from the balcony until he had caught me staring at him. Several minutes later he joined me on the balcony. Feeling a little embarrassed he breaks the ice from across the balcony and says he thought that I was someone else and that´s why he had been staring at me earlier. Nice ice breaker I think.

After realizing that Caculé, the long haired guy, speaks some English, but mentions that he doesn´t speak that well I come up with a brilliant idea!! I suggest, for both of our benefit, that he speak to me in English and I speak to him in Portuguese. He was delighted at the thought and agreed to practice with me.

Posted by ReneeL 14:44 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

The Delightful Village Across from Porto Seguro

Arraial D´Ajuda, Brazil

all seasons in one day 77 °F
View South of the Equator on ReneeL's travel map.

DSC01330.jpgHowever interesting Porto Seguro was-- I caught the tail-end of the Brazilan Championship Arm Wrestling Competition in Toa Toa, learned a little Maculelê (indigenous stick-fighting) in the Cidade Histórica, and was coaxed into dancing forró by MC Pelé at Axé Moi--I had heard that Arraial D´Ajuda was much nicer and should definitely be visited while I was in Porto Seguro.

My 3rd day in Porto Seguro I decided to make the small journey over to Praia de Pitinga, a beach that had been recommended by the receptionist at my hotel, in Arraial D´Ajuda. To get to Praia de Pitinga in Arraial D´Ajuda from where I was staying in Porto Seguro I had to catch a bus, a balsa (ferry boat), a van, and then a moto-taxi (motorcycle taxi). All of which should take somewhere around 30-40 minutes.

After taking the balsa across the Rio Buranhém and being ripped off (yet again, when will I learn) by the van driver, who I though was being extremely nice when he took me personally to the beach instead of dropping me off in the centro where I should have grabbed a moto-taxi, I arrived at Praia de Pitinga. It was amazing to see how much cleaner the water was given the fact that the beaches in Porto Seguro were located just over the river.

The little village of Arraial D´Ajuda was delightful. Different from Porto Seguro in almost every aspect and, again, given there proximity to one another I would have thought they would have been a more similar. Arraial D´Ajuda is much smaller, appeared to be much cleaner, and was notably much nicer. I loved the way the restaurants and shops lit up in the evening with all of the colorful, decorative lights.

Posted by ReneeL 15:44 Archived in Brazil Comments (1)

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