Friday, August 1, 2014


Tuesday was a long day! After our 3.5 hour bus ride, a 2-hour flight, and another 1-hour bus ride, we arrived in the city center of Curitiba. The only problem: our Couchsurfing host in Curitiba had to work from 6-10pm, and we arrived into the center of the city at about 6pm. Guess how we solved the problem....

We spent almost 5 hours in a shopping center.

Actually, it was not that bad. The mall was an old train station. So, it had a train museum in it, which was, of course, closed. Instead, we walked around the gardens they had inside of the mall. There was even water shooting across walkways and shrub sculptures of ducks, rabbits, and what we thought were giraffes. The best part: half off caiparinhas and trying avocado ice cream. (By the way, Brazilian avocados are slightly sweet and taste more like sugar water.) Luckily, our host got out of work early and we were able to get out of the shopping center and head to his house.

The next day we headed out, when our host went to work, to catch the tourist bus line. This bus goes to all of the major tourist locations for R$29 (about $12 USD), but you only get five rides on it. These are the places we chose to visit:

Botanical Gardens

Oscar Niemeyer Eye Museum: It had a Frida Kahlo exhibit

At Unilivre

Looking over the city in the Oi Tower

The Historic District at night

That night, our host invited us to go get a drink at a bar downtown. While waiting for him, Jake and I started a conversation with someone at the bar. After a few minutes, a dispute started. Two guys were arguing, while drunk, and one had a glass beer bottle (600ml) in his hand. The drunker one somehow ended up leaning on me, and the guy we were talking to earlier suggested that the bartender call the cops. Afterwards, we went back to our conversation about this trip. All of a sudden, the guy cuts himself off and asks if we are going to be at the bar a while longer. Then he disappears. Thirty minutes later, he comes back with a present for Jake and me.

After opening the book when we got back to our host’s home that night, it took us a minute to figure out why he had given us this book. I guess the author of the book was from Curitiba and then moved to Paraty (one of our later destinations). Later, he travelled around the world by boat. (Or, something like that.)

Our last day was spent with one of our friends from FURG who is from Curitiba. However, we had not really made a plan for the day. At 9am, I get a phone call from her telling me she is 6 minutes away. I was still sleeping. Jake and I hurried to meet up with her and spent the day walking around Santa Felicidade, an Italian area of Curitiba, and hanging out in a park in the city center.

Wine Tasting

Capivaras in the park!

Submarinos are a pint of beer with a shot of Steinager in a shot glass that is dropped into the middle of it. The tradition in Curitiba is to collect the shot glasses afterward. [Coming soon: More information on Jake’s blog post about Submarinos at]
Overall, the entire trip was amazing! Our first true experience as surfers was great and we are excited to continue surfing in the future. 

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