By Pedro Souza
September 4, 2017

In the Corredor Verde (Green Corridor), an exuberant corridor that runs along the coast of the state of Rio de Janeiro, one will find the city of Paraty. Settled in the 15th century by the Portuguese, Paraty was part of the Royal Road, which was a route used to transport gold during the colonial times. When the inner roads were opened in the late 19th century, the city was forgotten and froze in time. It was later discovered as a tourist destination and has now become one of the most popular coastal cities in the state of Rio de Janeiro.

With a population of less than 40,000, the city has a bucolic atmosphere, with well-preserved colonial-style houses, cobblestone-paved streets and fishing boats floating gently in the sea. The city is famous for its historical district, where one can appreciate the colonial-era architecture of the buildings, some of which haven’t changed for more than 200 years. No motor vehicles are allowed in this part of the city, but this shouldn’t be a problem. It is very easy to get around Paraty by foot. The fact that there are no cars driving through the historical district also make it a very pleasurable place to stroll around.

One of the main attractions of the city are the churches that abound there, such as the Capela de Santa Rita (Chapel of Saint Rita), Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Rosário e São Benedito (Church of Our Lady of Rosary and Saint Benedict) and the Capela de Nossa Senhora das Dores (Chapel of Our Lady of Sorrows) among others. Among the historical constructions are also two forts that are worth a visit: Forte Paratiba and Forte Defensor.

There are also many boat rides available in Paraty. You can simply take a boat ride through the bay and watch the city from a different point of view. Or you can explore one of the many islands and pristine beaches that surround Paraty. Maybe you would rather go snorkeling or scuba-diving. In many boat rides you can ask for a snorkel mask and for fish food, so you can feed the fish while you float around and appreciate the view underwater. Another way of enjoying the sea is taking kayaking tours, of which there are plenty available. With a rented kayak you can take a trip to a secluded beach or to one of the islands around the city.

If you are the adventurer type, you can also explore one of the trails around the city, which is surrounded by a lush rainforest. You can take trails through the Atlantic Forest that will lead you to beautiful views and to an array of beaches, such as the well-known Praia do Sono. If you don’t want to risk getting lost, you can rent a guide in the city. Some companies offer guides that speak English, so the language barrier shouldn’t be a problem.

During the summer holidays, Paraty gets extremely lively as people from other cities and even foreigners converge to appreciate the city. For those that want to want to meet new people and do some partying as well, this is the best time of the year to visit. If you would rather visit it when it is quieter to appreciate the city’s charming beauty and the surrounding nature, you might want to avoid it at this time. Regardless of what attracts you to Paraty, however, I’m sure you will soon fall in love with it.

By Pedro Souza
September 4, 2017

In the south of Brazil lies Paraná, a state famous for its araucaria forests and for the Iguaçu Falls, which is one of the most dazzling sights in Brazil. These and other wonders await you if you ever decide to explore Paraná. If you do, it might be a good idea to get acquainted with the local language. With this in mind, we have made a compilation of slangs and expressions from Paraná.

Piá: The paranaense way of referring to a little boy.
Piá de prédio (Building’s piá): Someone that rarely spends any time outdoors.
Gambiarra: Something that is improvised or not well made.
Curitiboca: A person that complains about everything.
Jururu: A quiet person.
Gasosa (Gassy): This is how people from Paraná refer to soft drinks.
Jojoca: An expression for the hiccups.
Ciar: To be jealous of.
Mundeado: Someone that is well travelled.
Pinchar: To throw.
Pança: A common slang in some other states as well, a “pança” is a belly.
Avacalhar: To demoralize or to make a mess out of something.
Baita: Something very large.
Bedelhar: To intrude into someone else’s business.
Desgarrado: To be desgarrado is to be lost.
Esquentado (Heated): A person with a short temper.
Garrar: To start something.
Aí que a porca torce o rabo (This is where the pig twists its tail): A moment when someone has to face some hardship or difficulty.
Ficar na moita (To be in the bush): To be in the bush is to await silently for something.
Enjerizado: In a bad mood.
Entojado: Cocky or arrogant.
Massa (Mass): Something that is cool or fun.
Prosa: Someone that enjoys talking or/and talks a lot. In other states, “prosa” often means talk.
Volteada: A short walk or ride.
Zuar: To make fun of.
Apagar o pito (To put down the fire in the pipe): To calm down.
Procurar sarna para coçar (To look for an itch to scratch): To look for trouble.
Soltar a lingua (To let the tongue loose): When a person is unable to keep a secret, that person has let the tongue loose.
Barata tonta (Dizzy cockroach): A dumb or dim-witted person might get called a “barata tonta” in Paraná.
Mosca de cavalo (Horse fly): A horse fly is a bothersome person.
Por os pontos nos Is (To put the points in the I’s): To make things clear or to solve an issue.
Boanoitou: An expression used to communicate that night has arrived.
Jaguará: An ordinary thing.
Descolar (To unglue): To “unglue” something means to acquire it. If you have a pack of cigarettes for example, a smoker with no cigarettes might ask you to “unglue” a cigarette for him.
Dinheirudo: A person who is fairly wealthy but often complains about money.
Destrocar (To un-trade): Weird as it sounds, “untrading” refers to the act of trading.
Galinha de porão (Basement’s chicken): A person that doesn’t spend much time outdoors and therefore, becomes really White.