Itaparica Travel Blog› entry 40 of 73 › view all entries
I met Eduardo and Elena, AKA the spaniards, on the trek through vale do pati. That was 11 days ago, and today was gonna be the last day we hung.
We decided to check out the nearby island of Itaperica. They had plans for the evening, so i met them early at Praça da Sé to make a day of it. The catamaran left from Mercado ribeira and was pleasant and cheap, around 45min. As usual with any touristy spot in brazil, the second we got off the boat at Mar Grande, we attacked by tour guides trying to get our business. we didn't know exactly what we wanted to do, so instead of accepting any of their packages we went straight to the nearby cumbis (tiny van-bus things) and hitched a ride to the city of Itaperica on the western side of the northern tip of the island.
the cumbis ride was interesting and showed us alot of the normal life on the island. cattle farms here and there, banana trees, tiny bars, stores in rows....seems like a pleasant enough place.
when we arrived at the city of itaperica, we were relieved to find that it was MUCH calmer than mar grande. no tour guides. in fact, when we got off the bus, no people. everyone was at the beach. we decided to walk aroun the tip of the island to a beach called ponto de areia. the maps we all saw made the walk lok deceptively long, but it didn't take that long and was alot of fun. walking along beaches on an island just feels different from walking along beaches anywhere else....it's nice to know that you can't walk too far. worst case, you'll end up back where you started.
after walking past the beach on the tip of the island, we were met with water. we walked along a wall as far as it would go, then entered the waist deep water to wade to the next beach. we were later told that walking through there put us at a real risk of getting mugged, but that's what everyone tells me whenever i step outside here in brazil. brazilians love reminding you of how dangerous their country is. we didn't have ay trouble, and only met nice people on the walk.
after a little while we finally came to this gorgeous beach of pure white sand. the water was super clear, warm, all sorts of colors, and only ankle deep for a long way from edge of the sand. the beach was lined with palm trees and forest, was split (as many brazilian beaches are) by a fresh water river, totally unpolluted for a good stretch of sand, and best of all, had barely anyone on it.
<<if you decide to look for this beach, just walk. North from ponto araia is probably the fastest way. i don't think it's officially named on any map, and lies roughly between ponto de araia and praia forte. no road access>>
we stopped at a section of beach frequented by locals and spotted with little shacks. we stopped at one; suprisingly they were out of beer, and next door they only had one bottle left. this was at like 2 in the afternoon. We drank what we could, then continued on down the beach to the much more touristy area we later found to be the real ponto de araia.
After lunch, we split a cab back to mar grande. When we arrived, we saw the line to mainland was really long, so i was kidna concerned about how bad it would be going back. unintuitively, the line for the boat to salvador from itaperica was much shorter in the afternoon than the morning. We left Just as the sun was beginning to set, making for a gorgeous departure from the island.
I needed to do some research at the marina on the cheapest way to get to Morro de São Paulo, and the spaniards had to get ready for a folk dance show they'd bought tickets for, so we split up. After about 40 minutes we met up again at Terreira de Jesus for a last goodbye caipirinha. Good kids, i hope our paths cross again sometime.