Thursday, November 6, 2008

Day 14 - Buzios

The last day of vacation always leaves me a little bit sad. We took a boat tour that went to some islands and beaches. It was cold and overcast though so we didn't get off the boat to swim although some others on the boat did. Being overcast I didn't wear sunscreen yet managed to get red as a lobster. Our boat looked like an old pirate ship which is way cooler than the catamaran tours. The big highlight was seeing a penguin! Apparently penguins get swept up in the currents from Patagonia and often land on the beaches in Buzios. After hearing this on our trolley tour yesterday I'd spent part of the morning walking along the beach looking for one. At one island people came out in a boat selling freshly cooked shrimp. Delicious. I think the others that bought them ate them with the shells on. Ick.

After the boat tour we packed up our luggage and stored it at the hotel. We went for lunch back to the crepe stand again. The Husband was deciding between a ham and cheese crepe and a ham and cheddar crepe. Good thing I checked it out because they were making someone else's ham and cheddar crepe with more cheez whiz. However what they just call cheese on the menu looks like cheddar to me. We spent our last hour lounging at the pool deck before being driven back to the airport in Rio. Unfortunately we got there so early we weren't even allowed to check in yet. Once we finally got checked in and into the international terminal there was no food there! All I wanted was to buy a bag of chips or get something small to take on the plane so I wuoldn't have to eat the nasty dinner. No luck there although I did spend the last of my Brazilian money buying candy in the Duty Free shop. There were some crazy people rolling around huge baskets of duty free goods. I think one woman had 20 pounds of Toblerone and others were spending hundreds on electronic devices, perfume, and designer clothes. I've never had the urge to make large purchases while waiting for a flight but maybe their flights were delayed and they were bored.

Spiny plants

Tropical flowers

Coconut stand

Our pirate ship

The hotel next door to ours from the boat

One of the beaches

Another beach

The penguin!

The same penguin

The Husband on the boat

Me with some fabulous shrimp skewers

The Husband watching the Michigan football game on his Blackberry

Another picture of downtown

Yet another

All the boats anchored off the beach

Pretty flowers at our hotel

Rocks along the bottom of the water

Our hotel from the boat

Entrance to our hotel from the street
Thoughts on our hotel: We loved Vila d'Este and would recommend it to anyone visiting Buzios. We liked that it was so close to downtown and all the restaurants. All the other pousadas looked nice as well though. What we didn't like was the size of our bed. In Salvador we had the most gigantic bed ever, then in Buzios we had to sleep in a full. We thought the rooms and the bed size were small for the amount of money we paid. Also we wouldn't recommend the restaurant. We only saw one party eat there the whole time besides the free breakfast. They do make delicious drinks though for a night cap or lounging by the pool.
Thoughts on Buzios: Buzios is a great place to relax. I imagine in the summer it's pretty packed on the weekends with vacationers from Rio though. The beaches were not as good as I thought they'd be. They were pretty small although nice enough. Just don't expect miles of gorgeous white sand. The downtown area had a lot of nice restaurants and shops that I managed to do a lot of damage at. I think if we were to go back to Brazil we'd try a different town, maybe Paraty or Ilhabela instead just to do something different.