A jeep ride through the rainforest, in the National Park of Serra da Bocaina, is a great option if you do not have your own car in Paraty. You can spend a whole day in waterfalls, stills and forests. After being on a high from tasting cachaças and liqueurs, a swim in cold waters and another still and more waterfalls. Pure adrenalin!
The jeep gets you at the inn and goes along paved roads, surrounded by lots of green. The first stop is at POÇO DO INGLÊS WATERFALL, where the fun consists in swinging on hanging vines like Tarzan. Next, a stop at the still that sells the awarded cachaça Pedra Branca, with a little history and cachaça and sweets tasting – the papaya and coconut sweet and the drink Gabriela were the best ones.
After that, we visited the beautiful PEDRA BRANCA WATERFALL with natural pools to cool and sober up. There are the ruins of an old power station.
We drove to ALAMBIQUE DO ENGENHO, a pleasant place with a well maintained garden, a mill and historical objects. In the tasting area there is barrel that releases a nice aroma when you scratch your nail on it. The highlight here was the liqueurs, all delicious – I brought the fig one. The sweets are only for sale, so I bought some yummy tapioca flour with guava and coconut.
The best part of the day was TOBOGÃ (or Penha) WATERFALL, where we spent most time. It is a huge slippery rock that leads you to a deep natural pool. Tourists sit and slide, while the natives surf! There are even signs asking the tourists not to do so, because accidents are frequent to the reckless. Behind this rock there are other waterfalls, also fun and with a cave and a natural Jacuzzi.
The booze gives you courage to do what is on the video; thank goodness the driver/guide is always around to give advice and calm people down. The area is full of waterfalls and stills, but the tour is not exactly what they tell us at the agency. It seems that the guides decide which attractions will be visited and for how long. Whether this is good or bad, only when I visit them all.
Jeep Tours with ESTRELA DA MANHÃ – a 6-hour tour with daily departures for R$ 55 per person on the carnival, maybe cheaper on a different season. We were a group of 8 people.At lunchtime they take you to a cheap restaurant with tasty homemade food – you pay what you eat and drink.
Translated by Lúcia Maciel
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