Destination Maceió, second travel to the capital of the state of Alagoas.
Ponta Verde Beach, an urban beach within the city limits of Maceió.
Day two had a cloudy start, but there was no rainfall. We decided to spend this day with a walk along the urban beaches of Ponta Verde, near our hotel, and then along Pajuçara. From Pajuçara we were about to enter the ancient district of Jaraguá, and continue to the center of Maceió. A very long walk, but we would take it easy. The sun appeared, we quickly felt the warmth of it. Here in Maceió, the winter sun is much more powerful than the summer sun in, let’s say, The Netherlands. Many foreign tourists aren’t aware of this or just ignore it. Even in the Brazilian winter sun, you need to apply solar protection. Fortunately, Richard (a friend from the Netherlands visiting Brazil for the first time) was aware of the high UV index, and he halted various times, to apply more sunburn cream. It was a quiet Monday morning. The city slowly became alive, but the beaches were almost deserted. Only some tourists were found there, but they gathered near the little pavilions, or near anything that offered drinks.
There are various pavilions along Ponta Verde beach. These pavilions are visited much more frequently from Thursday through Sunday. However, this Monday didn’t offer much for the pavilion owners. They generally are specialized in seafood dishes, like fish, shrimps, and lobster. The prices are relatively high. Snacks are available for a price that starts from 10 reais per portion. Also the prices of the drinks are quite high. Therefore, these owners need to attract a certain kind of customers: (foreign) tourists, and middle and high class locals. At weekends, Some pavilions offer live music, this music may be widely heard in the neighborhood. Local residents may enjoy performances of local artist with own repertoire or covers from national singers, for free.
We arrived at a tourist information center, where we obtained some folders and a city map. Now it was much easier to plan the route to the city center. The attendant provided us some very useful information. Which museums were worth visiting, and which locations were the most interesting touristic sightings. Also useful was his information about the tides that week. Because at low tide, it is possible to join a jangada (flat-bottom boat) to the reefs at some kilometers from the shoreline. The reefs that appeared to the surface may then be visited, and the tourists may meet various aspects of natural marine beauty. Tourists who are eager to spend more money, may hire scuba diving equipment, and have pictures taken of them underwater, for a relatively high fee. The attendant warned us that we have to buy eventual tickets at the official municipal ticket office. The boats rented via this office, undergo regular checks. Other boats lack these checks, the tourists hire them at their own risk.
By Adriano Antoine Robbesom
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