There is a free walking tour in the little colonial town of Paraty. They started only one month ago and Jolien and me we participated while we stayed here. We would like tell you a little bit more about the tour without giving it all away. You still need a reason to participate.
Every day it starts at 5PM at the central square in front of the Nossa Senhora dos Remédios church. There is also a Free Walking Tour in Rio de Janeiro. We will do this one when we are back in Rio. But back to the one in Paraty.
First the tour will tell you a little bit about the history of Paraty and where the name comes from. There are 3 tails but nobody knows for sure. Only the natives know because they are involved in all three of the tails. At least that is what I think. The own became big during between 1700-1750 when the Portuguese found gold in Diamintina, Minas Gerais. And a hundred years later during the coffee exports to Rio de Janeiro between 1800-1850. At the end of the 19 century the city became redundant and forgotten. And that ks the reason why the city kept his historic and colonial appearance.
The old center dates from this time and is beautifully restored. Except one thing. During the installation of the main sewer system in 1980 the city counsel removed all the cobble stones. And when they placed them back they did this the Brazilian way. Your ankles will not enjoy your visit to Paraty. The cobble stones all come from Portugal. They were the ballast in the gold ships on their voyage to Brazil.
Did you know that a huge section of the town streets will float at high tide. While planning the city they did this on purpose so that all the manure and human feces would flush out of the streets. And planning the town they also thought about defensive measures against raids. The streets and the churches played a major part in this. Which? You’ll hear that on the tour.
All over town there are hidden symbols of the freemasons. Especially the number 33 is present a lot. Look closely to all the houses and churches. Do you see what I mean? Also the triangle is present in a symbolic way and the all seeing eye watches over you at many places.
The city still has a live link to the the old royal family of Portugal. The grand, grand, grand, grandson of one of Paraty’s inhabitants was the king of Portugal and Brazil. The tour really shows the places where you an see this link. And do you know what pineapples got to do with this? We do now.
During the tour you will walk crisscross over town and its picturesque streets. You will get extended information at all the 4 churches. Even the culture center dates back from colonial times and had many different functions. And when you are going on the tour you will know which house was the city hall and jail in one.
Our guide Juan José spoke English very well and was working hard to really tell you everything. We even had to play a game of Peteca. You need to try it ones. This is why we gave him a tip at the end of the tour. Which took around 2 hours and we highly recommend it. But it is up to you if you want to give a tip or not.