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Family & Friends at Carneiros Beach, Pernambuco, Brazil.

Waving along the Southern Coast of Pernambuco, Carneiros Beach (“Praia dos Carneiros”) discreetly possesses all the requirements to become a paradise. Sea of calm and crystal clear waters in shades of blue, palm trees, coral reefs and even a river that ends into the ocean. Likely, our last weekend at the beach in Brazil, surrounded by close friends – at least, the last one, for a while… Who knows what the future has is planning for us?! :o

Rustic bungalows have been built and decorated to meet the needs of comfort, and privacy, so tourists, or vacationing families may enjoy the peaceful setting that reigns in this paradise, still respecting the environment, its unique features and learning about preservation and ecological conscience.

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Posted by on June 16, 2012 in beach, BRASIL, ecology, photography

 

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Collecting Brazilian states: the mystic city of Juazeiro do Norte

 Brazil is famous for its ´mystic´places… Some believe, some others, don´t… Another well-know ´mystic place´ is the country´s capital – at least, unique on its beauty and touristic sights… Believing or not, all the sites are great for visiting, and for learning about culture, tradition and stories…

From Recife, Pernambuco
To Juazeiro do Norte, Ceara, Brazil
Distance: ~ 309 miles or 498 km

The city of Juazeiro do Norte in the state of Ceará has approximately 212,133 inhabitants, with an area of 248.56 km2, resulting in a very dense population for a city in the interior of Brazil.  Juazeiro do Norte is becoming a center for artisans, with a large vocation for the production of souvenirs and mementos. One of these mementos is the little rag doll or “boneca de pan”,  whose primary materials are cloth scraps, corncobs, thread, needles, cotton wadding, and a lot of imagination. The city has become famous for its religious pilgrimage. Here is a little bit of historical background, from Wikipedia:

“Juazeiro do Norte is best known as the base of the charismatic priest and politician Padre Cícero (Cícero Romão Batista) (1844-1934). A pilgrimage in his honour takes place every November, attracting thousands of followers. It was initially a district of the nearby city Crato, until a young Padre Cícero Romão Batista decided to stay as a cleric in the village. Padre Cícero was then responsible for the independence and emancipation of the city. Because of the so-called “milagre de Juazeiro” (“miracle in Juazeiro”, when Padre Cícero gave the sacred host to the religious sister Maria de Araújo, the host became blood), the priest was associated with mystical characteristics and began to be venerated by the people as a saint. Today the city is the second largest in the state and a reference in the Northeast region thanks to the priest.”

Find below a series of peculiar images from this mystic city, a site visited by tourists all-year around – religious or not…

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Posted by on June 10, 2012 in BRASIL, TRAVEL

 

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Mother’s Day Sunday is for…… Soccer?!

the local teams. the local “passions”…

 

So, Mother’s Day is for family. It’s a family day, for decades making Hallmark’s top sales, because, people need to say how much they love and cherish their moms – in writing, if all possible! Give it up to the greeting cards’ industries – they’ve got it down. And they’re right: Mother’s Day is for fathers, and sons, and daughters, and… for soccer! Again, this year, Mother’s Day Sunday will be celebrated with… soccer??!

That’s right. Our city, Recife, is completely immersed into the whole “soccer team passion”, and the two most important clubs are playing today, for the championship…

Last year, Mother’s Day was the first-legged game. This year, it’s the final match, so, here are my “motherly impressions” of this not-so-common way to express their love for their Mothers Soccer Teams!

:o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o

Impressions from last year’s Mother’s Day Weekend: the two teams facing each other… We stayed at home… safely watching the matches!

After a full week of ‘motherly celebrations‘, the weekend arrived. A dry weekend – the rains, which recently have scared and confused the population, seemed to have ceased. Good news. The city needed to get back into its routine. And with the arrival of weekend, came the excitement of enjoying quality time with the kids, watching them perform the little songs learnt in school, find the opportunity to have that long-lost face time with husband to chat and catch up… That’s right, here in Recife, Brazil, Mother’s Day Sunday just happened to be the first game of the “two-legged” championship final. Here is an idea on how exciting things may get when we’re talking about soccer in the Northeast of Brazil. The two competing teams arrest Sport Club Recife, the favorite, and the bearer of five previous championship victories. Its opponent: the Santa Cruz (“Holy Cross”) Soccer Club, the underdog, who today tried to pull out a miracle: win at the opponent’s ground.

Santa Cruz Futebol Clube, or simply Santa Cruz is a Brazilian football club in Recife, Pernambuco. On February 3, 1914, eleven young men aging from 14 to 16 years founded a football society. Because the boys used to play football on the streets by the yard of the Santa Cruz Church, the club was named after that church, which is situated on Santa Cruz Street in Recife. The first official meeting of the members was at 2 Mangueira St. In this meeting they decided the position of each member, the name of the club “Santa Cruz Football Club”, and society’s colors. Sport Club do Recife was founded on May 13th 1905, when Guilherme de Aquino Fonseca, from Pernambuco, returned after a season estudying in England. He got deeply interested in the British football, so, with some associates in Recife, he had the idea to create the club that would eventually become the greatest club in Brazilian’s North and Northeast Region. Sport Club Recife’s clubhouse is located in Praça da Bandeira, in the Ilha do Retiro, district in Recife. The club’s big structure has a number of areas, such as tennis courts, volleyball and hockey quarters. There is also a big aquatic complex, a training center and the house of all “rubro-negros” (red-and-blacks): the Adelmar da Costa Carvalho Stadium, commonly known as Ilha do Retiro.

Today’s match, the first one of the 2-legged final, happened at Sport Club’s home. It was a home game for Sport – who lost! This small victory tonight made the Santa Cruz’s gain new hope: hope that everything is possible, and miracles may happen – at least in Brazil. At least in Soccer.

And, if my Mother’s Day celebration had to include a couple of guest friends home for the game, so be it. If the price (if any!) for having a peaceful in-doors Mother’s Day Sunday was to rejoice my two boys during the match, I’ll take it. At the end, Mother’s Day is about family, and being together with the ones you love. Even if surrounded by loud screamers and over-excited kids.

Next week is the “final-final”. The second final game. And it’ll be on Santa Cruz’s grounds. I hope I have the same pleasant Sunday I had today: surrounded by my “amateur soccer fans”. Won’t care for the full house. Won’t care for the screaming at every wrong or crazy pass… Won’t really care for who wins or looses – just wanna hold on to this “Mother’s Day” feeling for another Sunday. Happy week to us all and good luck to both Santa Cruz and Sport Club!

 
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Posted by on May 13, 2012 in humor, sports

 

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São Cristóvão, the fourth oldest city in Brazil.

 

The city of São Cristóvão is located 25 km from Aracaju, capital of Sergipe, another northeastern state of Brazil, and the Praça de São Francisco (shown here) is the reason why the site is a holder of a World Heritage title.

The cobblestones are originally from the Philippines, and it’s the only city in Brazil with that type of street stone!

It was founded in 1590 and is considered the fourth oldest city in country. With fast and easy access from the state capital, what was before called he “capital of the Province of Sergipe del Rei” is now registered at the Institute for National Artistic and Historical Heritage – Iphan – preserving its colonial architecture, which delights any curious eyes and souls. A UNESCO World Heritage Site- and, so close to us! :o

The large Praça de São Francisco presents an architectural group formed by the Church and Convent of São Francisco, during the seventeenth century, which today houses a beautiful Baroque building that was the first hospital in the province of Sergipe, as well as the Historical Museum, where the old Provincial Palace hosted Dom Pedro II, while visiting the city in 1860.

This architectural complex of Praça de São Francisco was recently recognized by UNESCO, and awarded a World Heritage Site title.

In the Carmo Square visitors will find the Church of Our Lady of the Rosary of Black Men, built by the Jesuits in the eighteenth century.

The saint, who lends his name to the church, was the target of devotion of the slaves. At the Praça is also possible to find the Church and the Carmelite Convent, and the Museum of ex-votos. In the Convent, now home to Benedictine nuns, one of the attractions are the delicious cookies made by religious and fought over by tourists!

We try to travel as much as we can, work permitting! :o

Other historical cities from the northeast of Brazil:

São Luis, Maranhão  Eyes to the world   Teresina, Piauí   Interior da Bahia    Olinda, Pernambuco   João Pessoa and Ponta do Seixas, Paraíba  Maceió, Alagoas   Igarassu, Pernambuco  Vila dos Remédios, Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco   Rio Grande do Norte

 
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Posted by on May 10, 2012 in BRASIL, photography, TRAVEL

 

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Forte das Cinco Pontas, Recife.

Nome histórico: Forte das Cinco Pontas.
Designação popular: Forte das Cinco Pontas.
Nome de tombamento: Forte das Cinco Pontas.
Outras designações históricas:

  • Forte Frederik Hendrik;
  • Fortaleza de São Tiago das Cinco Pontas;
  • Forte Frederico Henrique;
  • Forte Frederick;
  • Heinrich Trots Den Duivel (Desafio Ao Diabo);
  • Vijfhuck (Cinco Pontas);
  • Fortaleza de Frederico Henrich.

Muralhas desgastadas, fossos secos e aterrados, paliçadas em grande parte caídas pela deterioração das madeiras, foi este o quadro que apresentava o Forte Frederick Henrich, quando da chegada de Nassau a Pernambuco. Logo pode Nassau constatar a pouca defesa que em tais condições aquele forte poderia oferecer; e se tratava de um importante posto, pois era o único capaz de garantir água no caso de um cerco à cidade. Mandou alargar e aprofundar os fossos; construir uma contra-escarpa na face externa do fosso; alargar e elevar as muralhas; e do lado do mar, construir uma sapata. Posteriormente ampliaram as defesas externas, com a construção de novos fossos em direção ao sul.

Quando da Restauração Pernambucana, o Forte das Cinco Pontas foi a última fortaleza a ser conquistada pelas tropas luso-brasileiras.

Foi ainda no Forte das Cinco Pontas, onde se encontrava aquartelado o general Sigismund Von Schkoppe, que foram elaborados os termos da rendição das tropas holandesas. E a 28 de janeiro de 1654, na Campina do Taborda, o general Francisco Barreto de Menezes, recebeu oficialmente os termos de capitulação, quando ficaram definidos os moldes da evacuação dos holandeses de Pernambuco.

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Posted by on May 6, 2012 in ART, BRASIL, photography

 

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Environmentally Protected Area (APA): Reserva Biológica do Altinho, Pernambuco, Brazil

Be aware: Cute Animals Ahead!

Find below images from our visit to the “Environmentally Protected Area” of Altinho, a park embedded in the middle of the State of Pernambuco, in the Agreste Region of the country, showcasing the characteristic Caatinga vegetation (desertic, hiperxerophyla, lacking leaves trees). Not far from our home, some good 160 km, or 260 miles – a good weekend getaway!
The protected park borders the (famous for seasonal festivities and their arts & crafts) cities of Caruaru and São Caetano; Cupira, Panelas and Ibirajuba; Agrestina and Cachoeirinha. The park is surrounded by several rivers, but mainly by the Una and Ipojuca rivers. The rivers lead into the Atlantic Ocean, creating deltas, which are a great spot for calming and relaxing baths…

Entering the Park:

Área de Proteção Ambiental, Reserva Ecológica do Saltinho, Pernambuco

Where the Una river meets the Atlantic Ocean

Caution with the animals crossing the road

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2012 in BRASIL, ecology, photography, post a day

 

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Exploring one of the largest coral reefs in the world: Carneiros Beach, Pernambuco, Brazil

Waving along the Southern Coast of Pernambuco, Carneiros Beach (“Praia dos Carneiros”) discreetly possesses all the requirements to become a paradise. Sea of calm and crystal clear waters in shades of blue, palm trees, coral reefs and even a river that ends into the ocean.

Rustic bungalows have been built and decorated to meet the needs of comfort, and privacy, so tourists, or vacationing families may enjoy the peaceful setting that reigns in this paradise, still respecting the environment, its unique features and learning about preservation and ecological conscience. [The 'talk' about the beach's intriguing bungalows is reserved for a 'soon-to-come' post!]

bidding farewell...

 
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Posted by on February 9, 2012 in BRASIL, ecology, photography, post a day

 

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