It’s hard to think that you’re in Brazil when you’re in Canela. A town famous for its tourism and chocolate from nearby Gramoda. Situated 800 metres above sea level in the Alpine mountains, both towns are steeped in colonial history with French style chateaux houses consistently built throughout the area. It’s a bit like a Whistler Ski village with shops selling seasonal clothes and furniture show rooms displaying extravagant pieces of carved wood and sheepskin.
I have the urge to go off piste but the snow falls rarely, instead travellers from all over Brazil come to taste chocolate, wine and cheese and to experience the cabins and log fires. Chimarrao is a drink of bitter green tea stuffed inside a carved out plant with a metal diffuser that looks like a straw, this goes with a flask of hot water which is as common a sight as the tea, tucked underneath drinkers arms. It is rude not to accept Chimarrao and if offered to you, you have to drink it. I bought some home with me but have been given strict instructions to watch youtube on how you make it first.
I walk past a group of men in their late 50′ s all in the traditional gaucho dress http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaucho and the borders of the motorways are packed with vibrant Hortencias flowers.
The following pictures are of the decorations of baby week amongst the backdrop of the Canela.