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A French Touch

A French
      Touch

A roar made the house shake. A blood cascade gushed over the man!
The foot was agitated as a wounded monster.
By Brazzil Magazine

Maranhão

Maranhão, with an area of 324,616 sq. km and a population of five million, is the
second largest state in the Northeast, after Bahia.

For many years after their discovery of Brazil, the Portuguese showed little interest
in the area, which now forms the state of Maranhão. In 1612, the French arrived to
construct a fort at São Luís, which later became the capital of the state.

Although the southern and eastern areas of Maranhão are characterized by vast expanses
of babaçu palms and typical sertão landscapes, the western and
northwestern regions merge into humid Amazon rainforests.

The rural economy of Maranhão is dependent on the babaçu palm, which serves an
amazing multitude of purposes: the nuts can be eaten straight out of the fruit or crushed
to produce vegetable oil (margarine) or industrial lubricating oils; the tips of the young
palms can be eaten as `palm hearts’; and the older trunks are used for construction of
huts, with roofing material supplied by the leaves—which can also be used for the
production of cellulose and paper. The residue from the crushed nuts provides excellent
fertilizer and cattle feed; and the hulls of the fruits are used in the production of
acetates, tar and methyl alcohol. Finally, the hulls are turned to charcoal for use in
smelting. Things go better with babaçu!

The state’s most recent impact on the country’s political scene was made by Roseana
Sarney, the daughter of former president José Sarney, who in November 1994 became the
first woman in Brazil to be elected a state governor. Young and beautiful, `Roseana’, as
she encouraged voters to call her, had her face splashed on just about every inch of
available wall space during the campaign. She scraped into the job by the slimmest margin,
with many residents claiming it was her family’s connections and power that got her over
the line. Meanwhile, her father recently established a $12.5 million memorial to himself,
complete with black-marble mortuary room, with part of the money paid by taxpayers.

SÀO LUÍS

São Luís, the capital of Maranhão, is a city with unpretentious colonial charm and a
rich folkloric tradition—definitely a highlight for travelers in the Northeast. The
population is a diverse mixture of Europeans, blacks and Indians. Apart from the
attractions of the restored colonial architecture in the historical center, São Luís
offers passable beaches only half an hour from the center (with better ones further
afield), and the opportunity to cross Baía de São Marcos to visit Alcântara, an
impressive historic town slipping regally into decay.

History

São Luís was the only city in Brazil founded and settled by the French. In 1612 three
French ships sailed for Maranhão to try to cut off a chunk of Brazil. They were embraced
by the local Indians, the Tupinambá, who hated the Portuguese. Once settled in São
Luís, named after their King Louis XIII, the French enlisted the help of the Tupinambá
to expand their precarious foothold by attacking tribes around the mouth of the Amazon.

But French support for the new colony was weak, and in 1614 the Portuguese set sail for
Maranhão. A year later the French fled, and the Tupinambá were `pacified’ by the
Portuguese.

Except for a brief Dutch occupation between 1641 and 1644, São Luís developed slowly
as a port for the export of sugar, and later for cotton exports. As elsewhere, the
plantation system was established with slaves and Indian labor, despite the relatively
poor lands. When demand for these crops slackened in the 19th century, São Luís went
into a long and slow decline.

In recent years the economy of São Luís has been stimulated by several mega-projects.
A modern port complex has been built to export the mineral riches of the Serra dos
Carajás, a range of hills in the Amazon, which has the world’s largest deposits of iron
ore. In 1980s, Alcoa Aluminum built an enormous factory for aluminum
processing—you’ll see it along the highway south of the city. The $1.5 billion price
tag for this project was the largest private investment in Brazil’s history. A missile
station has been built near Alcântara, and oil has been found in the bay.

Orientation

Perched on a hill overlooking the Baía de São Marcos, São Luís is actually on an
island of the same name. The historic core of São Luís, now known as Projeto Reviver
(Project Renovation), lies below the hill. Going north from the old town, the Ponte José
Sarney bridge will take you across to São Francisco, where there is the new and affluent
district with several hotels, restaurants and trendy nightspots.

It’s easy to get around on foot—despite the hills and confusing street
layout—because everything is so close. In fact, as long as you’re in the old part of
town, a bus is rarely needed.

The most confusing thing about getting around São Luís is the existence of several
different names for the same streets. There are the new official names that are on street
signs and the historical names or nicknames that the locals use. No two city maps seem to
be the same.

Alternative Street Names

The following is a short list of streets with their common alternative names in
brackets:

28 de Julho (Rua do Giz)

Rua da Estrela (Rua Cândido Mendes)

Rua Afonso Pena (Rua Formosa)

Rua do Sol (Rua Nina Rodriguez)

Rua do Egito (Rua Tarquínio Lopes)

Rua do Veado (Rua Celso Magalhães)

Rua dos Afogados (Rua José Bonifácio)

Rua de Nazaré (Rua de Nazaré e Odilo)

Rua das Barrocas (Beco dos Barqueiros; Rua Isaacs Martins)

Rua Jacinto Maia (Rua da Cascata)

Rua Portugal (Rua Trapiche)

Rua da Alfândega (Rua Marcelino de Almeida)

Praça Dom Pedro II (Avenida Dom Pedro II)

Information

Tourist Office

São Luís has recently upgraded its tourist information facilities. Maratur, the state
tourism organization, has its head office just off Praça Dom Pedro II. Other Maratur
information booths are on Praça João Lisboa, next to the main post office; on Rua da
Estrela, in the historic center; at the rodoviária; and at the Centro de
Artesanato (CEPRAMA), on Rua de São Pantaleão 1232. Sebrae, a quasi-governmental
industry organization, has a high-tech tourist information booth on Praça Dom Pedro II.
This is a good place to make contact with local guides, such as Simon Ramos (236-4069) or
Senhor Obrito.

For details about national parks in the state, contact IBAMA (222-7288), at Avenida
Jaime Tavares 25.

Money

Banco do Brasil is at Avenida Gomes de Castro 46. Banco da Amazônia, at Avenida Pedro
II 140, also changes money, and is more conveniently located if you are staying in the
historical district.

Post & Telephone

The main post office and TELMA, the state telephone company, are in the same building
on Praça João Lisboa.

Foreign Consulates

The following countries are represented in São Luís:

Denmark

Rua do Sol 141 (222-4075)

France

Rua Santo Antônio 259, Colégio Franco Maranhense (222-2732)

Germany

Praça Gonçalves Dias 310 (221-2294)

Italy

Avenida do Vale 9 (227-2387)

Catedral da Sé

Constructed by the Jesuits in 1726 as the Igreja Nossa Senhora da Boa Morte, this
building became the official cathedral in 1762. Inside, there’s a fine baroque altar and
ceiling frescoes decorated with babaçu motifs.

Palácio dos Leões

Originally a French fortress built in 1612 by Daniel de la Touche, during the reign of
Louis XIII, this is now the Palácio do Governo, the state governor’s residence and
office. The interior reflects the pomp of Versailles and French architectural tastes.
Visiting hours are 3 to 6 pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Projeto Reviver

During the late 1980s, the state authorities finally agreed to restore the historical
district, which had been neglected and decaying for many decades. The initial restoration
project was completed in 1990, but the new governor, Roseana Sarney, has promised new
funds for ongoing work.

Over 200 buildings have already been restored and the district has been turned into one
of the architectural highlights of Brazil.

To appreciate the superb colonial mansions and the many designs and colors of their azulejo
façades, just wander around the district. Azuleaw6kx were first produced in Portugal
and later became a popular product in France, Belgium and Germany. Since azuleaw6kx
provided a durable means to protect outside walls from the humidity and heat in São
Luís, their use became standard practice during colonial times.

Museu de Artes Visuais

This museum has a fine collection of old azuleaw6kx, engravings, prints and
paintings. It’s open from 9 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday, and from 2 to 6 pm on Saturday
and Sunday.

Opposite the museum is the old round market, where you can shop with the locals for
dried salted shrimp (eaten with shell and all), cachaça, dried goods and
basketwork, or visit the lunch counters for cheap local cooking.

Cafuá das Mercês & Museu do Negro

This museum is housed in the old slave market building where slaves were once kept
after their arrival from Africa and until they were sold—notice the absence of
windows. A small and striking series of displays documents the history of slavery in
Maranhão. The museum is open from 1 to 5.30 pm Tuesday to Saturday, and from 2.30 to 5.30
pm on Sunday.

The African slaves brought to Maranhão were Bantus from Africa who were used primarily
on the sugar plantations, and to a lesser extent for the cultivation of rice and cotton.
They brought their own type of Candomblé, which is called Tambor de Mina in this part of
Brazil. The museum director, Jorge Babalaô, is an expert on Candomblé and
Bantu/Maranhense folklore. He may be able to indicate where you can visit a ceremony, but
the major houses, the Casa das Minas, Casa de Nagô and Casa Fanti-Ashanti-Nagô, don’t
welcome visitors.

Museu do Centro de Cultura Popular

This museum is at Rua 28 de Julho 221, just a few minutes on foot from the Cafuá das
Mercês.

The displays include a good collection of handicrafts from the state of Maranhão, and
Bumba Meu Boi costumes and masks. It’s open from 3 to 6 pm Monday to Friday from 10 am to
1 pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Centro de Criatividade

This exhibition and performance space in the heart of Projeto Reviver is for
culture vultures interested in the local art scene. There’s a theatre for local plays and
dance productions, an art gallery and a cinema showing art-house films.

Igreja do Desterro

This church notable for its facade, was built between 1618 and 1641 and is the only
Byzantine church in Brazil. There’s small adjoining museum, the Museu de Paramentos
Eclesiásticos, with a display of ecclesiastical apparel.

Fonte das Pedras

This fountain, built by the Dutch during their brief occupation of São Luís, marks
the spot where, on 31 October 1615, Jerônimo de Albuquerque and his troops camped before
expelling the French. The fountain is located inside a small, shady park.

Museu Histórico e Artístico do Estado de Maranhão

This museum, housed in a restored mansion originally built in 1836, provides an idea of
daily life in the 18th century, with an attractive display of artifacts from wealthy
Maranhão families. There are furnishings, family photographs, religious articles, coins,
sacred art—and President José Sarney’s bassinet.

Opening hours are 10 am to 5 pm Tuesday to Saturday.

Fonte do Ribeirão

This is a delightful fountain, built in 1796, with spouting gargoyles. The three metal
gates once provided access to subterranean tunnels, which were reportedly linked to
churches as a means to escape danger.

Beaches

The beaches are beyond São Francisco district and they are all busy on sunny weekends.
You should beware of rough surf and tremendous tides in the area: ask for local advice
about safe times and places to swim before you head for the beaches.

Ponta d’Areia is the closest beach to the city, only 3.5 km away, but the
pollution has put a stop to bathing. It’s a popular beach for those who want to make a
quick exit from the city and visit the barracas and restaurants here for beach
food.

The next beach, Calhau, is broad and beautiful and only 7.5 km from the city.
The locals like to drive their cars onto Calhau (as well as the next beach, Olho d’Água)
park and lay out their towels alongside their machines. On weekends this causes congestion
which spoils enjoyment of these good city beaches.

Olho d’Água, 11.5 km from São Luís, has more beach barracas and
football games. It’s active and fun on weekends.

Praia do Araçagi, four km further, is the quietest and most peaceful of these
beaches. There are only simple bars and a few weekend beach houses.

Festivals

São Luís has one of Brazil’s richest folkloric traditions, which manifests itself
during its many festivals. Carnival is supposedly a real hit. There are active samba clubs
and distinctive local dances and music. Most Carnival activity is out on the streets and
the tourist influence is minimal.

The Tambor de Mina festivals, held in July, are important events for followers of the
Afro-Brazilian religions in São Luís, and São Luís’ famous Bumba Meu Boi festival
commences in the second half of June, continuing until the second week of August. The
Festa do Divino, celebrated on Pentecost (between May and June), is especially spectacular
in Alcântara.

Places to Stay (bottom, middle and top end.) (For all places listed here read
the book for this information.)

Places to Eat

The best Maranhense food comes from the sea. In São Luís you’ll find many of the
familiar dishes of the Northeast, and regional specialties such as torta de sururu (mussel
pie), casquinha de caranguejo (stuffed crab), caldeirada de camarão (shrimp
stew) and the city’s special rice dish—arroz de cuxá (rice with vinegar,
local vegetables and shrimp.)

City Center

There are plenty of lanchonetes serving cheap food. Across from the Fonte do
Ribeirão, you’ll find a couple of good snack bars with sucos.

The Base da Lenoca, on Praça Dom Pedro II is a popular restaurant with a great
position overlooking the Rio Anil—order a beer and a snack and enjoy the breeze. In
the heart of the historic district, on Rua da Estrela, there’s the Restaurante
Antigamente, which has tables on the street and seafood and meat dishes. Live
music is offered here in the evening on weekends. Senac: at Rua de Nazaré
244, offers fine dining in a lovely colonial building. Naturista Alimentos, at
Rua do Sol 517, has the best vegetarian food in the city. Pizzaria Alcântara, on
Rua Portugal, has reasonable pizzas and refeições.

São Francisco

The main drag through São Francisco has many new restaurants, particularly pizzerias
and bars. The Oriental at Avenida Presidente Castelo Branco 47 has a nice
view and serves Chinese food.

Further from the City Center

The seafood is highly recommended at Base do Germano (222-3276), at Avenida
Wenceslau Brás in Gamboa district. Base do Edilson (222-7210), at Rua Alencar
Campos 31, in the Vila Bessa district, is a 10-minute drive from the city center. The
restaurant starts serving lunch at 11.30 am and dinner at 7 pm. The portions are not big
for what you pay, but we’d suggest ensopado de camarão com molho pirão and peixada
com pirão, for $12.

Beaches

At Ponte d’Areia, Tia Maria has good seafood, and it’s also a fine place to
watch the sunset over a cool drink. This is also the closest beach to the city with barracas
serving food.

Entertainment

São Luís is currently the reggae center of the Northeast, and many of the nightspots
cater to reggeiros (reggae fans). The tourist office has a list of places to check
out—some of them can be a bit dangerous, although this also seemed to be a
prerequisite for a happening place! It’s worth asking locals for recommendations. Espaço
Aberto, at Rua Epitácio Cafeteira 117, São Francisco, is a good place to start.

For dancing, try Boate Gênesis, at Avenida dos Holandeses Qd-28, 4, at Calhau beach;
Boate Tucanos, at Avenida Jerônimo Albuquerque, Curva do 90, in the Vinhais district,
northeast of the city center; or Le Mason, at Rua Haroldo Paiva 110, São Cristóvão.

Things to Buy

São Luís is the place to look for the traditional handicrafts of Maranhão, such as
woodcarving, basketry, lacework, ceramics leatherwork, and woven goods made from linen,
local plant fibers and straw. Also on sale are featherwork and items made from woven straw
or plant fibers (from baskets to bracelets) by the Urubus-Caapor Indians and the Guajajara
Indians, both from the interior of Maranhão state.

CEPRAMA (Centro de Artesanato), at Rua de São Pantaleão 1232, is housed in a
renovated factory and functions as an exhibition hall and sales outlet for handicrafts.
It’s open from 3 to 9 pm on Sunday and Monday, and from 9 am to 9 pm Tuesday to Saturday.
Also worth visiting are the Centro Artesanal do Maranhão at Avenida Marechal Castelo
Branco 605, and the Mercado Central. The Mercado Central is open from 7 am to 4 pm Monday
to Saturday, and the Centro Artesanal do Maranhão is open from 8 am to 8 pm Monday to
Friday and from 8 am to 1 pm on Saturday.

Getting There & Away (Air, Bus, Boat) & Getting Around for all
places listed here. (For this information read the book.)

ILHA DE SÀO LUÍS

Praia da Raposa

Out at the tip of the Ilha de São Luís, 30 km from the city, is the interesting
fishing center of Raposa, also known for its lacework. It’s a poor town, built on stilts
above mangrove swamps, which gives it an unusual appearance. The bulk of the town’s
population is descended from Cearense immigrants. There are no tourist facilities
but the ocean here is pretty and very shallow. There are lots of small fishing boats and
it’s not too hard to negotiate a ride. Bathing at the beach is dangerous due to extreme
tidal variations. The water recedes up to one km at low tide. 

Sao José do Ribamar

This fishing town is on the east coast of the island, 30 km from the city. There’s a
busy little waterfront with boats leaving for small towns along the coast. This is a good
way to explore some of the untouristed villages on the island. On Sunday buses go from
São José to nearby Ponta de Panaquatira, a popular weekend beach.

The Sao José do Ribamar Miracle

The origins of the town date back to the early 18th century when a
Portuguese sailing ship went astray and started to flounder on the Baía de São José.
The desperate crew begged for mercy from São José das Botas and promised to procure the
finest statue of the saint and construct a chapel for it if they were spared.

The ship and its crew were miraculously saved, and several years later, the promise was
kept when a fine statue of the saint was installed in a chapel at the tip of the cape
where the disaster was narrowly avoided. The settlement on this site later received the
name São José do Ribamar, a fusion of the saint’s name and the local Indian name for the
rock formation at the cape.

According to local legend, the statue was moved away from its site beside the shore,
but miraculously reappeared in its original position the next day—without any signs
of human intervention. The miracle was repeated a couple more times, until the locals
decided the statue should be left in its preferred place. During its track, the statue
left deep footprints along the rocky coastline which are now venerated by the townsfolk,
who host the annual Festa do Padroeiro (held in September) in honor of the saint.

AROUND SÀO LUÍS

Alumar

One of the world’s largest aluminum processing plants is on the outskirts of São
Luís. Alumar is a co-operative venture between the Brazilian government and a Shell
Oil/Alcoa consortium. Bauxite ore is extracted from mines in Pará and brought by rail to
the Alumar plant for processing. Tours are conducted on Saturday (216-1155). Call a
few days in advance for reservations. A company bus leaves from Praça Teodoro in São
Luís.

ALCÂNTARA

Across the Baía de São Marcos from São Luís is the old colonial town of Alcântara.
Founded in the early 1600s with extensive slave labor, the town was the hub of the
region’s sugar and cotton economy. The beneficiaries of this wealth, Maranhão’s rich
landowners, preferred living in Alcântara to Sao Luís

While the town has been in decline since the latter half of the 19th century, it is
still considered an architectural treasure and some experts claim that it is the most
homogeneous group of colonial buildings and ruins from the 17th and 18th centuries in
Brazil.

Construction of the Centro de Lançamento de Alcântara (CLA), a nearby
rocket-launching facility, caused mutterings amongst residents, who disagreed with the
forceful resettlement policy undertaken to clear the construction site. There couldn’t be
a greater contrast with this slumbering colonial town than a space-age launching pad!

Information

The tourist office in São Luís has brochures about Alcântara. Phone connections with
Alcântara are effected through the TELMA office in Alcântara, where you can leave a
message.

Things to See & Do

The town is very poor and decaying, but don’t miss the following: the beautiful row of
two-story houses on Rua Grande, the Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Carmo (1665);
and the best preserved pelourinho (whipping post) in Brazil, on Praça da
Matriz.

The Museu Histórico, on the Praça da Matriz, displays a collection of sacred
art, festival regalia and colonial furniture. Each room has its own guardian—a source
of employment for the locals. Opening hours for the museum are 8 am to 2 pm Tuesday to
Saturday, and 8 am to 1 pm on Sunday.

Once you’ve seen the main sights, you can walk to the beaches or take a boat trip out
to nearby islands.

Festival

The Festa do Divino is held on the first Sunday after Ascension Day. Check the date for
the festival (usually held in May) with the tourist office in São Luís.

This is considered one of the most colorful annual festivals in Maranhão, a fusion of
African and Catholic elements with two children dressed as the emperor and empress paraded
through the town and accompanied by musicians.

PARQUE NACIONAL DOS LENÇÓIS MARANHENSES

The natural attractions of this national park include 1550 sq. km of beaches,
mangroves, lagoons, dunes and local fauna (turtles and migratory birds). The park’s name
refers to the immense dunes, which look like lençóis (bed sheets) strewn across
the landscape. Since 1981 this parcel of land has been set aside as a protected ecological
zone, staving off the ruinous effects of land speculation.

The park has minimal tourist infrastructure, but it’s currently possible to arrange a
visit from the town of Barreirinhas, which is two hours by boat from the dunes. The tiny
fishing villages of Mandacaru and Ponta do Mangue, around 22 km northeast of Barreirinhas,
are very hard to reach and have no facilities for tourists, so take your own hammock.

Information

For more information, contact the tourist office in São Luís, or IBAMA (222-3006), at
Avenida Jaime Tavares 25, also in São Luís.

Tours

Several travel agencies in São Luís offer tours to the park. Taguatur (232-0906), at
Rua do Sol 141, loja 14, and Delmundo Turismo (222-8719), nearby on Rua do Ribeirão, both
have three-day tours from around $175, including transport, accommodation in Barreirinhas
and a guide.

Barreirinhas

Barreirinhas, the jumping-off point for visiting the Parque Nacional dos Lençóis
Maranhenses, is also a pretty little town on the banks of the Rio Preguiça. There is a
river beach with sand dunes near the center of town, and a couple of good pousadas
and restaurants.

Pousada Lins organizes tours of the park—the day trip by boat up the Rio Preguiça
costs $90 for up to five people. Otherwise, ask around for Edivaldo, a friendly and honest
young guide, who can organize transport for day trips. If you don’t want to do the full
day trip, it’s possible to hire boats along the riverfront to take you to the beginning of
the park for a few dollars.

Tutóia

Tutóia is a fishing port and beach town on the edge the Delta do Parnaíba, a
2700-sq-km expanse of rivers, dunes, beaches and mangrove forest which straddles the
borders of Maranhão and Piauí.

On the beachfront, the Pousada Cação is a beach shack with a bar decorated
with shark’s jaws and snakeskins. Apartamentos cost $8, single or double. The Hotel
Três Irmãos, on Praça Igreja, in the center, is run by a friendly family and has quartos
with fan at $3 per person.

THE NORTH COAST

The town of Guimarães is a center for boat building and fishing. Further north is
Cururupu, a small town which is the gateway to the Lençóis de Cururupu—a huge
expanse of coastal dunes similar to, but not to be confused with, those in the Parque
Nacional dos Lençóis Maranhenses.

About 80 km offshore is Parcel de Manoel Luís, a coral reef named after the Manoel
Luís, the first ship to be lost there. According to experts, this reef, extending
over 28 km, is the largest in South America, and there are plans to turn it into a marine
park. There are also plans to exploit it as one of the world’s top attractions for divers,
especially those with fat wallets tucked into their wetsuit.

RESERVA BIOLÓGICA DO GURUPI

This biological reserve in the Serra do Tiracambu, on the western border of the state,
is not open to the public. This news does not seem to have reached the sawmill owners,
loggers and assorted industrialists clustered on the fringe of the reserve, who are
plundering it at top speed.

IMPERATRIZ

Imperatriz, 636 km from São Luís, is a rapidly expanding city on the border with
Pará. The expansion is due to the rabid logging and mining of the surrounding region,
which is turning the forests into ecological nightmares and attracting plenty of low-life
characters to make a quick killing. The only possible reason to visit would be to change
buses—otherwise, just keep going. The airports at Imperatriz and nearby Açailândia
are frequently closed for days on end because of the huge clouds of smoke from forest
fires.

CAROLINA

The town of Carolina, 242 km south of Imperatriz, lies beside the Rio Tocantins, and
provides a handy base for visiting nearby natural attractions.

Pedra Caída, 35 km from town on the road towards Estreito, is a dramatic combination
of rock canyons and waterfalls. Some of the other spectacular waterfalls in the region
are: Cachoeira do Itapecuruzinho, 27 km from town on the road that goes toward Riachão;
Cachoeira de São Simão, at Fazenda São Jorge, about 10 km from Carolina; and Cachoeira
da Barra da Cabeceira. There are rock paintings and inscriptions at Morro das Figuras,
close to Fazenda Recanto; and bat enthusiasts will want to visit the colony of bats in
Passagem Funda, a large cave 70 km from Carolina.

Bumba Meu Boi

São Luís is famous for its Bumba Meu Boi—a fascinating, wild folkloric festival
with a Carnivalesque atmosphere in which participants dance sing and tell the story of the
death and resurrection of the bull—with plenty of room for improvisation. Parade
groups spend the year in preparation, costumes are lavish and new songs and poetry are
invented. There are three forms of Bumba Meu Boi in Maranhão: bois de matraca; bois
de zabumba and bois de orquestra.

The story and its portrayal differ the Northeast, but the general plot is as follows:
Castrina, goddaughter of the local farm owner is pregnant and feels a craving to eat the
tongue of the best boi (bull) on the farm. She cajoles her husband, Chico, to kill
the beast. Once the dead bull is discovered, several characters (caricatures drawn from
all levels of society) do some detective work and finally track down the perpetrator of
the crime. Chico is brought to trial, but the bull is resuscitated by various magic
incantations and tunes. A pardon is granted and the story reaches its happy ending when
Chico is reunited with Catrina.

The festivals start in the second half of June and continue into the second week of
August. Give the tourist office a call to get the exact data.

Excerpts from Brazil – A Travel Survival Kit, 3rd edition, by
Andrew Draffen, Chris McAsey, Leonardo Pinheiro,  and Robyn Jones. For more
information call Lonely Planet: (800) 275-8555. Copyright 1996 Lonely Planet Publications.
Used by permission.

Buy it at
Amazon.com

Lonely Planet
Brazil – A Travel Survival Kit

by Andrew Draffen, Chris McAsey,
Leonardo Pinheiro, Robyn Jones,
704 pp

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A two-year-old boy has been hospitalized in serious condition in Barreiras, a city 858 ...

Unemployment Goes Up to 10.2% in Brazil

Brazil’s unemployment rate went back on the rise and closed the month of January ...

The Grass is Greener on Brazil’s Side

Tumucumaque Park is 568,000 acres larger than Slonga National Park in the Democratic Republic ...

Brazil’s Air Control Chief Fired, Air Supervisor Charged with Cover-Up

After watching the country’s air crisis from a distance while his Defense Minister, Air ...

Brazil Amitech CEO, Roberto Roselli

Saudi Company Pumps US$ 9 Million in Brazilian Pipe Business

Amiantit, a Saudi giant in the pipe sector, is investing US$ 9 million to ...

Lula Discards Retirement and Vows to Stay on Political Stage

The president of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva discarded any sort of retirement ...