03 November 2014


There are two cities in Brazil that make me say This is beautiful, I could live here! every time I visit them. One of these cities is Tiradentes, up in the mountains of the State of Minas Gerais, one of the famous "historic cities" which include Ouro Preto, Congonhas and São João del Rey, among others. I think of Tiradentes as a city for mature people to live in or visit. The music pouring out of restaurants and shops is classical or jazz, which for me is a refreshing change from the generic and mediocre rock music which is the unfortunate background noise in many restaurants and shops in Búzios. There is a not-so-off-the-mark comment one hears often in Brazil, "Everything that’s good comes from Minas." Truth be told, much of our own best furniture and decorations comes from Minas, and in particular from Tiradentes.

Our beautiful guardian angel, straight from Tiradentes . . . 

. . . as are these cute couples 

Table courtesy Tiradentes

Another table courtesy Tiradentes

The other city that makes me daydream about moving is Paraty, which, like the "historic cities" in Minas, owes its frozen-in-colonial-time feel to the 18th century Brazilian Gold Rush. This shared history has left Paraty and Tiradentes with a similar look and feel, but for the fact that Tiradentes is landlocked and Paraty sits prettily on the water, conveniently located between Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. So convenient, that Mark and I had to make it a stop on our way back from São Paulo recently. Paraty has an architecturally beautiful city center, prohibited to cars, and is chock full of art galleries and bookstores. Paraty’s fame has grown considerably since 2003, when it first organized FLIP (Festa Literária Internacional de Paraty), now an annual literary festival which draws authors and readers from all over the world.


First we found a pousada --

Our view

And then I ran to see the view --

And then we went to scout the restaurants --

And the galleries --

And the bookstores --

Paraty is truly frozen in time --

And on the way out of town I couldn't help but wonder -- any chance this house was on the market?


  1. I recognize the last house. It's facing the water, right? On a walking tour, the guide told us it belongs to a member of the royal family (Orleans e Bragança?). That's why it's painted with the colors of the flag. Who knows, they might be interested in a sale! =)

  2. I am really enjoying your blog..what magical places..we share a similar gout ..i am moving to Buzios and i sended you an email did you received it??
    my mail: jardin7@yahoo.com

    1. Thanks, Alexandre! Yes, I did receive your e-mail, and will reply separately.