Ubatuba – Surf Capital of São Paulo and a former Prison Island

Bay of Ubatuba

The bay of Ubatuba with the city in the distance

Ubatuba, on Brazil’s Costa Verde (green coast), with its 36 beaches and the proximity of the Atlantic Rainforest, is one of my favorite places for a weekend getaway. Surfing, hiking, diving, a boat ride to hidden beaches or former prison island “Ilha Anchieta”, Ubatuba has it all. Continue reading

Pico do Papagaio – hiking on Ilha Grande – Rio de Janeiro

The pico do Papagaio seen from the boat arriving at Ilha Grande

The pico do Papagaio (parrot peak) seen from the boat arriving at Ilha Grande. It is the shark fin shaped tip on top of the mountain in the middle of the picture.

The hike from the village of Abraão to the Pico do Papagaio (Parrot Peak) is considered the hardest one on Ilha Grandebut totally worth the effort.  Continue reading

Day Tripping at Tijuca Forest – Rio de Janeiro: another day at the office

On the top of Pico da tijuca - Rio de Janeiro

On the top of Pico da Tijuca. Sweating like a horse in almost 40°c temperatures, but no complaining from any of us :)

Rio de Janeiro was basking under a perfect summer day and although this time of the year most people come to the Cidade Maravilhosa to enjoy the Carnaval, two Dutch girls asked me to take them for a walk on the green side of Rio de Janeiro… the Tijuca Forest. No need to say I was more than keen…  Continue reading

Penedo – Finnish Culture in the Tropics

Christmas atmosphere the year round in Penedo

Christmas atmosphere the year round in Penedo

Penedo is a small touristic town in the foothills of the Serra da Mantiqueira, about 180 km west of Rio de Janeiro. The town was founded by Finnish settlers around 1930, who introduced the sauna and vegetarianism to Brazil. Continue reading

Spotting Carcará Eagles in the Serra da Mantiqueira preserve – Rio de Janeiro

Last Saturday, Fernanda and I were going for a hike up the Pedra Selada in the Serra da Mantiqueira and ended up spotting a couple of Carcará eagles.

Serra da Mantiqueira preserve - Rio de Janeiro - Brazil

one of the dirt roads winding through the Serra da Mantiqueira preserve

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Santa’s Sexy Little Helpers – Xmas Rio de Janeiro Style

Waiting to pick up a friend at a gas station in São Conrado to go hiking in the Tijuca forest in Rio de Janeiro, I spotted these two attractive looking girls wearing some kind of Xmas outfit, trying to draw the attention of passing motorists…

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My Most Loyal Travel Companions.

Meet my two most loyal travel companions…

Garmin ZUMO 550

On the motorcycle and in the car: my Garmin ZUMO 550

Ever since I arrived in this immense and diverse country called Brazil, I have been relying on two things to find my way to far away places and back home again. I say ‘things” because that’s what they are… I’m talking about the Global Positioning System, commonly referred to as the GPS… 

As the title of this post implies, I am using two of these babies:

  1. On the Motorcycle and in the car: A Garmin Zumo 550
  2. On hikes and mountain bike rides: A Garmin GPSmap 60C

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Easy 4×4 – the Tinguá Biological Reserve – Rio de Janeiro State

“even though it was raining most of the time during my trip, I still enjoyed every second of it.”

caminho do imperador - rio de janeiro - brazil

The trip started out dry, but then the rain started and things got a little more wet and muddy.

In my never-ending quest for new interesting places, I stumbled upon an ancient road, called “Caminho do Imperador” wich connects the municipality of Miguel Pereira and the Imperial city of Petrópolis.

Doing some research afterwards, I learned that this road had been opened in the early 17th century as one of the first links between the city of Rio de Janeiro and the gold and diamond mines in the interior of Minas Gerais.

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