This June, Rio is hosting a UN conference on sustainable tourism in Brazil: bringing into yet more focus the preservation of the environment and close relationship that is being built with local communities. Whilst such sustainability endeavours have been steadily burgeoning for years, a particularly enticing example is at our tropical Green Coast hideaway, Pousada Picinguaba (if you want to be there now, based on the photos alone, take a look at our Green Coast and the Gold Rush itinerary).
Quite close to Paraty, and nestled in the fishing village of Picinguaba, the hotel is enveloped by one of the most diverse coastal rainforests in the world – portions of which have been given UNESCO heritage status. As for the French owner Emmanuel, his affinity with the beautiful surroundings was apparent straight away: greeting our expert half way across the glorious bay, and swimming up to her boat on one of his daily swims.
If you stay here you’ll be met with an equally warm welcome, and as you make the short walk to the pousada along the seriously secluded beach, you’ll be introduced to the many locals and fishermen who Emmanuel works with. Together, they’ve come up with a myriad of eco initiatives for the hotel, including making soap and candles from leftover oil and wax, using biodegradable cleaning products, and (a simple measure, that we suspect will be music to many of your ears…) choosing to have no TVs or phones in the rooms so that you can totally unwind.
Aside from appealing to the eco-conscious, we love the fact that Pousada Picinguaba is staffed almost entirely by locals – after all, when you’re in holiday in Brazil, it’s that local character that you're after (along with the beautifully fresh seafood that they haul in each day!). The rest of the delicious produce is as locally sourced as possible, with coffee from their own plantation, and organic fruit and veg from their nearby farm.
To experience the beauty of Pousada Picinguaba – and stay at their sprawling ranch sister property, Fazenda Catucaba – take a look at our South Brazil Itinerary: Green Coast and the Gold Rush.