Tucked between the lush green mountains of the Bocaina National Park and the island-studded bay of Angra dos Reis, Paraty (pron. pah-ra-CHI) is one of the most charming little towns in Brazil.
Its Centro Histórico (old town) has been preserved as it was in its 18th century heyday, with cobblestoned, pedestrian-only streets and renovated colonial-style mansions. Many of these have now been converted into restaurants, art galleries, guesthouses and shops, which give the town a unique atmosphere that is at once laid-back, traditional and cosmopolitan.
The colonial architecture is complemented by the stunning natural setting, with unspoilt beaches, forests, waterfalls and islands all within easy reach. All kinds of sports and outdoor activities can be enjoyed, from hiking to sailing to scuba diving.
Paraty has a busy tourist calendar, hosting several annual events such as its renowned international literary festival. The region produces some of Brazil's best cachaças or 'pingas' and so another of its attractions is the annual Festival da Pinga. This year's festival will take place Aug 13-16, partly overlapping with our event.