By: Bella Papadopoulou.
It is not a secret that Itacaré offers a little bit of everything. From Atlantic forest to white sandy beaches … from sea to lakes. The varied environments allows one to practice various kinds of sports and experience new and exciting adventures.
The edge of Itacaré’s calmer river fronting the neighborhood ”Forte”, is also the home of the Association of Kayaking of Itacaré. Every day members and tourists take the kayaks and row along the beautiful Rio das Contas that starts in Chapada Diamantina and ends in Itacaré.
Josenildho Monteiro De Jesus, who is the founder of the association goes kayaking every day and believes it to be an amazing experience each time he paddles out.
”Kayaking is great because, first of all, it is calming and also healing in a way. Secondly, it is a great way to make new friends while having fun together in a group. Last, but not least, you are out in this breathtaking nature and can enjoy it up close” Josenildho says.
And it is absolutely true! Paddling along the river one will pass next to the Atlantic forest with the small fishing boats in the background and a setting or rising sun ahead of you (depending if you go early in the morning or in the afternoon).
But kayaking here is not only a hobby. Itacaré is in fact a leading city withing kayak championships both nationally and internationally. Today there are 15 champions that proudly represent Itacaré at national and international competitions as well Marta Ferreira who is a two times paraolimpic world champion.
”As our athletes train in an environment that is made up by both river and sea, they definately have an advantage in competitions because they alredy know how to paddle in all kinds of conditions” Josenildho says.
”Over the years we have given support to many children by keeping them away from drugs and allowing them to become competitors and responsible citizens” Jozenildho says.
To book a kayak tour or make a donation, one can go to the associasion that is located in the neighbourhood Forte, Monday-Saturday 07.00-17.00.