Road trip up north – The journey

After much persuasion from my colleagues to explore the surrounding cities around Porto Alegre, the department admin exec helped organised a taxi with an English speaking guide to take me to Gramado and Canela. These 2 towns are considered the European town in Brazil where the weather gets so cold during winter that it snowed. Apparently this is the only place in Brazil that snowed.

The irony for me to visit this town is I AM living in Europe! I would prefer to see other things really. But the attraction is really the waterfall in Canela.

I was truly surprised when I met my guide for the day… a chinese man!! He greeted me in mandarin when I saw him. His family migrated to Brazil when he was a baby. Then he wanted to converse in mandarin but I told him I’m more comfortable conversing in English. There is a reason why I wanted an English guide!!

Anyway, the road trip turn out to be quite fun. So I arranged another trip for him to bring me to the winery tomorrow! Yipee…. !!

There’s 2 routes to get to Gramado, the romantic and non-romantic routes. The road sign actually says Rota romântica! It’s called a romantic route simple because the roads are very scenic and full of trees.

So along the roads you can constantly see maple trees. The weather was fabulous as well… clear blue sky and hot sun shinning!

First town – Nova Petropolis.

Highlight of this town definitely is this labyrinth they have in the middle of the town. My guide gave me a tip as I entered the labyrinth, but I cheated my way to get to the middle and got stuck while trying to get out. It was good fun to start the day!

It is quite claustrophobic in the labyrinth.

When you do get to the middle, there’s a platform for you to stand on to see the view.

After Nova Petropolis, we continue our journey to Gramado. Check out the sky… just love the clear blue sky!

At the entrance to the city.

Next sight, the black lake (Lego Negro).

A German migrant built this lake according to a lake in Black Forrest in Germany because he was homesick.

You can rent a swan or a ship pedal boat and enjoy the scenery from the lake.

Nice flowers found around the lake.

Famous restaurant in Gramado that serves wild animals.

On the way to Canela from Gramado.

This is the highlight of the trip. Waterfall in Parque do Caracol in Canela. It is situated in the State Park. It has an observation desk, a trek to get down to the base of the waterfall and of course a cable car (teleferico) to enjoy the view. Since my guide were not that keen to ‘walk’ (neither do I), we took the cable instead… heheheh

Here comes my ride. It’s actually quite scary to sit on this kind of cable car. The car is hanging on to only ONE cable AND there’s no cover for your leg… ie you can see down below. The cable car consists of 3 stations and visitors embarque on the teleferico from the middle station.

And here go… up up and up. The cable car will first go up to the station right on top of the hill.

This is the view from the top station. Simply AMAZING.

And down we go…

Look to the left, there’s that observation tower.

This view is scarier… and the cable car is damn freaking slow.. which doesnt help if you’re afraid of heights.

Back to the middle station. Oh.. this cable is more than 10 years old.

Approaching the bottom station.

One last look at the waterfall. Before I forget, apparently during the rainy season, the volume of water is much higher!

I also took a video during my ride. You’ll hear from the video some guy shouting. Besides the cable car, visitors can also go on the flying fox. The guy was shouting while on the flying fox.

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4 thoughts on “Road trip up north – The journey

  1. What wonderful pics!!! You sound as if you are more on a holiday than working!!!! I want to have your job tooooooooooo!!! :):)

    The lavenderish coloured blossoms are hydrangeas. They bloom purple/pink depending on whether the soil is acidic/alkaline. I can’t remember which colour for which soil but I do know that people put rusty nails in the soil to change the ph of the soil to get the colour they want.

    Just thought you might be interested! (and yes, I’m slightly cuckoo from all the studying and work!)

    Keep the pics coming! I’m using then as my escapism!

  2. Cat – Please .. I am on business trip ok! hehehehehe

    Lili – It is very freaky. I generally do not have problems with height, but on this ride I was quite ‘scared’…

  3. Oh.. I also just found out today, apparently there were some accidents that happened where the cable car snapped and a few ppl got injured. This was very recently too.. in Jan/Feb 2009!!

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