Guest Blog: Adventures in Brazil, Part Two

By Rachel Hartman

Adventure Number 2: Morro de Sao Paulo

Since we survived the taxi ride to the ship terminal, I  assumed that our trip to this gem of an island would be successful. I could not have been more accurate. The two hour catamaran ride was amazing. I have never seen water so calm. Mary, Lindsay and I sat outside for most of the voyage. I met this nice guy from Argentina. Little did we know that he understood English perfectly. We were ignorant to think that nobody on the boat spoke English, so we were saying things as we pleased. Oops. Anyways, I was able to take some beautiful photographs of the still water and even some flying fish!

When we got to the island, we could not have been more excited. It was beautiful. There were no cars, and tons of tourists. We finally felt as if we could walk around without the threat of getting mugged. Cute boutiques and small pousadas (hotels) lined the sandy roads. Taxis, known to others as wheel-barrows, assisted visitors with their baggage and even their children. The soft and white sandy beaches were stunning. People were so happy. All in all, a satisfying contrast from Salvador. We had been there for five minutes when we decided we never wanted to leave.

Our hotel was on the third beach, a bit of a walk, but not too far from the restaurants. It sat right on the beach with apartments and villas spread out amongst the large property. Because there were five girls in total, we rented a villa for the night. Although many of my friends did not like the gecko living in the room, I did not mind. There were two levels and more importantly, air conditioning. We spent the afternoon at the beach and bought tickets to the club that was recommended by the guy I met on the boat (it was also recommended by a website we looked at before we went).

We had a nice candle-lit Italian dinner on the beach before going out for the night. The club was high up on a hill, but well worth the hike. We managed to stay at the club until five thirty in the morning! I saw the guy from the boat again with his five friends. The two groups spent the night dancing and talking. We were planning on seeing them on the beach the next day, but I went shopping with two of my friends instead. We started our walk back in the dark, and ended it in the light. The sunrise was absolutely stunning and I was so upset that my camera was back in the hotel room. Mary and I decided to get crepes, even though it took an hour. It was well worth it to taste Nutella once again.

The boat ride back was a little bit different then the ride to the island. Half of the passengers were leaning over the side to throw up and the other half was sleeping inside. I was sitting in the back with my eyes half closed and trying not to think about getting nauseous. We all practically kissed the land when we got back to Salvador. I am proud to say that we made it back to the house, once again, safe and sound!

Today was a rough day back at the orphanage. Every time one person cried, it seemed as if everyone began to cry. I got thrown up on, baby food spilt on me, and boogers on my arm, but overall, it was a good day.

Thanks Rachel for these amazing stories! If you want to read more of Rachel’s blog, ‘My Gap Year Travels’ can be found here!

Feel free to contact Rachel via email at & be sure to check out the rest of her photography here!