Nov 16, 2010

Where are you going for New Year´s Eve ( part III) ?

by Antonella Kann

Still not ready to decide your whereabouts for the last evening of the year? I would guess that by now, at least half of the readers know where they want to do on December 31st, one third doesn´t have a clue and the rest, well….is still thinking.

So I just want to help those who haven´t made up their mind. Good luck! Notice that this time we are far away from the beaches!

Located in the state of Minas Gerais, at 1900 meters above sea level, Do Lado de Lá is the highest pousada in Brazil. And a haven for nature lovers. But don´t expect luxury or pampering: there´ll be neither in-room massage nor personal 24hrs butler in this rustic pousada.

You feel like you are on top of the world, surrounded by the Atlantic forest, waterfalls and vegetation. And that´s all the luxurious atmosphere of the Serra do Papagaio, in Aiuruoca, a region located almost 270 kilometres from Rio de Janeiro. Even the name of the place is hard to pronounce - and even harder to remember.

With such a conspicuous name, which means On the Other Side has less than 10 accommodations and those range from standard rooms with shared bathroom up to bungalows with private Jacuzzi. As you have probably guessed, it’s an all-inclusive establishment (there´s nowhere else to eat, anyway!), with honest and simple home-made food cooked in the old fashioned way – on the woodstove.

A destination like Pirenópolis don´t come much more original than that. It´s not exactly in the middle of nowhere, but sure is off the beaten track as a New Year´s hub. But it´s a very attractive colonial town located in the state of Goiás. It´s tiny, genuine, and has small but comfortable pousadas and surprisingly good restaurants.

You can also amuse yourself by digging into antiques shops offering furniture and delicious old bric-à-brac. And, of course, there are the traditional small stores selling all sorts of regional artifacts. But strolling around the town is likely to find locations to captivate the eye.

the cachoeira do Abade, a few miles from the center of Pirenopolis

The local cachaça also is a must-try experience. There are more than a hundred labels waiting for you in several small bars. And, as you´re likely to be using your feet instead of your car ( which should definitely be left in the parking lot of your pousada!) feel free to go wild! But do drive to the nearby sites for amazing hikes and god refreshing plunges in waterfalls. Oh, sorry, I almost forgot: try the pousada O Casarão ( tel. 62 3331 2662)

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