Paraty is a destination full of history and a wide variety of natural beauty. Check out the unmissable ecotourism attractions and plan ahead!
Paraty is one of the oldest cities in the country and is located in a tourist region known as “Costa Verde”, 258 km ( 160.31 mile) from the Marvelous City. The municipality is one of the main Ecotourism hubs in the State of Rio de Janeiro.
Founded in the mid-17th century, Paraty has an unparalleled historical value that, along with countless natural beauties, was declared a Historical and Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO.
There are more than 60 islands and 90 paradisiacal beaches – most of them wild and accessible only by boat or trail. A paradise for all styles of traveler, especially those who enjoy nature tourism.
The 15 Best Ecotourism Destinations
1 – Stroll through the Historic Center of Paraty
Strolling through the historic center of Paraty.
First of all, to get to know Paraty better, there’s nothing better than starting with a leisurely walk through the historic center.
Listed by the National Historical Heritage Institute, the Historic Center of Paraty was built between the 17th and 19th centuries and today has many shops, bars, restaurants, old houses and colonial-style buildings.
The Historic Center of Paraty has a very interesting peculiarity: the city was designed so that sea water could enter and leave its streets, as a natural way of cleaning them, this invasion of water in some streets makes the place even more beautiful. .
The Main Church, the Museum of Sacred Art and the Casa da Cultura are among the main historical heritage sites that are worth a visit.
2 – Lagoa Azul (Blue Lagoon)
Schooner ride on the Blue Lagoon in Paraty. Photo: Lee Machado Sellam.
The natural pool known as Lagoa Azul is one of those mandatory Ecotourism attractions in Paraty. Surrounded by rocks and preserved forest, the place is a haven for marine life and breathtaking natural beauty.
To get to Lagoa Azul it is necessary to take a boat trip that also includes other tourist attractions. The high point of the tour is when the boat stops and you can take the opportunity to go for a swim.
3 – Boat and schooner trip
Boat and schooner ride.
Some of the most beautiful and paradisiacal beaches and islands in Paraty are only accessible by sea, so boat or schooner trips are among the city’s most popular attractions.
There are several itineraries that accommodate all styles of travelers. The most traditional route is the circuit between the nearby islands and along Vermelha and Lula beaches.
If you are looking for a more “roots” itinerary, the tip is to go by boat to Ponta de Cajaíba and once there, follow the trail to the beaches of Martim de Sá and Grande da Deserta.
4 – Trindade
Aerial view of Trindade. Photo: @rodolfomanfredine..
Located 25 km (15.53 mile) from the Historic Center of Paraty, in the Cairuçu Environmental Protection Area, Vilarejo de Trindade is another unmissable tour. There are beautiful beaches, waterfalls and trails.
5 – Cachadaço Natural Pool
Cachadaço natural pool. Photo: Disclosure.
The Cachadaço Natural Swimming Pool is among the most popular attractions for those visiting the village of Trindade. This natural pool formed by the sea and surrounded by rocks is perfect for peaceful bathing and diving.
A tip for this place is to take a snorkel to enjoy the abundant marine life there.
6 – Praia do Meio (Meio Beach)
Meio Beach in Trindade. Photo: @caggianofelipe.
Another unmissable tour that you can’t miss when you’re in Trindade is Praia do Meio, after all, its crystal clear waters and cozy atmosphere make it Trindade’s main attraction.
A favorite especially among families with children, because the sea is calm and shallow, Praia do Meio has bars, kiosks, boat trips, SUP and kayak rentals. It is also a stopping point for those going on the trail to the Cachadaço Natural Pool.
7 – Saco do Mamanguá (Mamanguá Bag)
The Saco de Mamanguá, in Paraty, is the only fjord in Brazil..
The only tropical fjord on the Brazilian coast – huge rocky valleys flooded by the sea – Saco do Mamanguá is one of Paraty’s main attractions and surprisingly stretches for around 8 kilometers until reaching the mangrove forest of Ilha Grande Bay.
8 – Caminho do Ouro (Gold Path)
Caminho do Ouro (Gold Path). Photo: Disclosure.
In the 18th century, Brazil went through a very important period economically known as the Golden Cycle. The city of Paraty, in turn, was essential during this period as it was one of the most important port cities at the time and because it was in a strategic location.
Centuries later, the path used to transport gold – called Estrada Real – became a tourist attraction and has waterfalls, workshops and restaurants.
9 – Cachoeira do Tobogã (Tobogã Waterfall)
Tobogã Waterfall. Photo: Marize Thomaz.
Have you ever thought about being able to enjoy a whole day of fun on a naturally sculpted toboggan in the middle of one of the most beautiful landscapes in Paraty? So take note of our tip: Cachoeira do Tobogã, the place also has three water wells.
On this tour it is common to see locals “surfing” on the waterfall – an incredible skill, by the way – and, even though tourists don’t have the same astuteness to do the same, you can go down sitting down comfortably.
To get to Cachoeira do Tobogã, visitors need to cross a small trail that starts behind the Caminho do Ouro Tourist Information Center.
10 – Poço do Tarzan (Tarzan’s Pit)
Tarzan’s Pit. Photo: Disclosure.
Located a little above Cachoeira do Tobogã, Poço do Tarzan is a natural pool formed between the rocks. It’s the perfect place to take a waterfall bath and get that well-deserved refreshment.
11 – Praia do Saco da Velha (Saco da Velha Beach)
Saco da Velha Beach in Paraty. Photo: Elcio Reis.
Saco da Velha Beach is located in Baía da Preguiça, this tour is a great option for those looking for peace and contact with nature.
The beach has calm and transparent waters, excellent for snorkeling. However, access is only via boats that can be chartered from the Paraty pier.
12 – Pedra Branca Waterfall
Pedra Branca Waterfall.
Pedra Branca Waterfall is a place that offers great diving spots, refreshing baths in the waterfalls and, however, for those who are more skilled, there is the option of climbing the stone wall that permeates the attraction and taking advantage of the water wells. upside. The trail to reach this waterfall is easy and takes just 10 minutes.
13 – Cachoeira do Saco Bravo (Saco Bravo Waterfall)
Saco Bravo Waterfall in front of the sea. Photo: @rafa.lobatto.
The Saco Bravo Waterfall forms a natural pool on a rock that is right in front of the sea. This attraction is located in the Juatinga State Ecological Reserve and is a great trip for those who love ecotourism and trails.
The difficulty level of the trail to the waterfall is considered difficult and, therefore, is not recommended for sedentary people, as its 7.4 km route (round trip) has many ups and downs.
To visit Saco Bravo Waterfall it is necessary to hire a tour guide accredited by INEA (State Environmental Institute). The place is limited to up to 140 people per day.
14 – Praia do Sono (Sleep Beach)
Camping at Praia do Sono. Photo: praiadosono.com
If you have a more adventurous spirit, want to disconnect from the world and like camping, Praia do Sono will certainly not let you down, of the very few families that live there, some work in restaurants and bars, so the minimum structure you will find in the local.
The beach is isolated and has very poor cell phone signal, to get to it you can take an approximately 1-hour trail leaving Vila do Oratório (next to Condomínio de Laranjeiras) or 10 minutes by boat leaving the village.
15 – Ilha do Pelado (Pelado Island)
Pelado Island. Photo: Disclosure.
Finally, one of the most popular destinations in Paraty is Ilha do Pelado, its crystal clear and calm waters are perfect for spending a peaceful day on the beach, eating and enjoying nature.
Ilha do Pelado is more than 30 km from the center of Paraty, leaving from Praia de São Gonçalo, it is approximately a 10-minute boat ride costing R$20 (round trip).
Ecotourism in Paraty stands out as a unique experience that harmonizes the region’s natural exuberance with environmental preservation. The stunning landscapes of the Atlantic Forest, pristine beaches and the city’s historic charm create a captivating setting for visitors seeking a deeper connection with nature. This model of sustainable tourism in Paraty seeks not only to offer memorable experiences, but also to promote environmental awareness and involve local communities in the care and preservation of their heritage.