Festival Gastronômico Sabores de Itacaré

The Gastronomic Festival “Sabores de Itacaré” invites everyone to know a little more about the diversity and gastronomic quality of Itacaré. The event takes place from December 1 to 17. 40 restaurants participate in the festival. Seventeen days with public performances by the best local chefs and a cultural program with popular music.

Festival Gastronômico Sabores de Itacaré

 

 

 

Top 10 Healthy things do in Itacaré for free!

By: Bella Papadopoulou.

1. Clay in Engenocha
Only a few kilometers outside of Itacaré and a 15-minute walk through the Atlantic forest lies the beach called Engenocha. There is a wall facing the sea that is made of a special clay called “Argyle”. This clay is known for its toxin-drawing properties. Cover yourself in it, wait a bit then take a dip in the warm ocean water to rinse. The final result is soft and healthy skin.

2. Coconut water at the beaches
It will be a challenge to find a coconut-free beach around here! Take one of the already fallen coconuts, hit it against the rock and drink the nutrient rich coconut water that is full of electrolytes. Coconut water also helps your body fight viruses and boost your metabolism system.

3. Cocoa good for the heart
Itacaré is located on what is known as the coast of Cocoa. This fruit has many benefits including the ability to decrease blood pressure, which as a result, improves blood vessel health and lowers cholesterol levels. Chocolate which is made from Cocoa, is also said to increases the level of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates emotions, creating a good feeling.

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4. Massage under the waterfall
The waterfall of Tijuipe is known for its breathtaking beauty but what many people do not know is that if you stand under the falling water, it’s akin to receiving an excellent shoulder massage. Say goodbye to worry and stress!

5. Walk barefoot at Concha
The calm sea at Concha beach allows you to walk around in the water slowly. The bottom is filled with small stones that press all the important spots under your feet and makes a gentel zonotherapeutic massage that is beneficial for the whole body.

6. Enjoy the energy of the sun
The sun is a great source of vitamin D that is necessary for optimal health. Getting your daily dose of sunshine will enhance your immune system. It increases the number of white blood cells in your blood. It also helps them to be better fighters in their mission to kill bacteria. Of course, we need only to expose ourselves to the sun for short periods. Plus always remember to use sunscreen!

7. Yoga for the mind and body
Through the practice of Yoga we reach a higher lever of both well-being and awareness. Go to Resende beach, inhale the beautiful scenery, close your eyes and feel your body become calmer with every inhalation.

8. Peeling with the sand
Our skin needs to be exfoliated at times to remove dead cells. The wet grit of sand is a perfect mixture of delicate and rough so a full-body scrub results in a glowing appearance. And pss! Your tan will lasts longer on a freshly peeled skin.

9. Laugh a lot
Laughter is the best medicine! It decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, as well as improving your resistance to disease.

10. Dance the night away
Bahia is known as the place where people dance in the streets on every corner. Take off your sandals and shake your body to happy samba tunes or grab a partner and spin around while dancing Forró.

The home of chocolate

By: Bella Papadopoulou.

It was New Yorker Alan Slesinger that brought new life to what was an old colonial building from the 30s. Today Vila Rosa is standing proud on a 100-hectare piece of land that is part cocoa farm and part paradise.

Vila Rosa

One morning, we met in front of Alan´s café Casarão Azul and before boarding his Land Rover that carried us to Taboquinhas where the Vila is located, Alan says, ”this experience will be totally different from what we are expecting”.

Driving there was half the fun. We drove through the untouched Atlantic forests, farms of palm trees, and açaí fruit growing wild. From high above we can see the river, Rio de Contas, that starts off in Chapada Diamantina and ends up in Itacaré, making a stop in Vila Rosa first.

”I think that what will make your trip special is the beauty of the place… and, of course, some chocolate on top of that” Alan says while we drive the 30 km away from Itacaré where only 10 are asphalted; so buckle up.

Where does chocolate come from? We all eat it, crave it – some even claim not to be able to live without it; yet, very few know from where it actually originates. And it is sure to say that a tour around the cocoa farm at Vila Rosa will clear out all question marks.

This is where it all starts…

We finally arrived at Vila Rosa and were welcomed by Alan´s dog, Museum, who happily greeted us all. Around us there are only flowers and trees of all variations and with only one breath you feel like you are in a totally different world. Looking around the green scenery (and the very organised cobble stoned paths) Vila Rosa stands out among the flowers, making a fine first impression.

Cocoa

We started the tour around the farm that is home for over 40 different types of fruits and berries while Alan explained the entire process of making chocolate from scratch. The farmers are very careful not to harm the environment and this is why they grow the plants organically. The plant’s seeds (or beans) are used to make chocolate, the juice is pressed and made into beverage and the remains of the cocoa fruit is used for composting so as not to waste anything.

Maria Leticia Ribas was one of the visitors in our group and she was absolutely amazed by the tour. ”It was a surprise to see that chocolate starts off as a seed. I was also surprised by its taste as I thought it would be sweet but it was, in fact, very sour” she says.

After the tour, we visited the mansion at Vila Rosa that has been restored into a museum. There we saw how the family that used to reside there lived in the 30s. It also gave us insight into the life of a cocoa farmer in this region.

Our day at the farm came to an end with a delicious New York-style pizza slice and some freshly made cocoa juice directly from the farm. Then we drove back to the modern world, where chocolate does not come from a tree but from the nearest supermarket.

If one day is not enough, one can also have a colonial dinner or stay the night at Vila Rosa. Check out Vila Rosa’s official website for more information.