Cities: Paranaguá and Pontal do Paraná
Attractions and activities: Here we have a daily reminder of the merging of the bay with the sea. It carries the name of the largest local, coastal plains river, which divides the municipality of Paranaguá from that of Pontal do Paraná. Along the banks of the river, in addition to many services offered by local communities, the Ecological Highway (Estrada Ecológica) takes people of the local indigenous Guarani M’bya community to the Sambaquis (middens) archeological site – the largest along the coast of Paraná and the only one registered as Artistic Historical Heritage – and the old calcium ovens (where shells were burned to provide calcium). The historical city of Paranaguá, a former capital of the state of Paraná, today retains much of its original architecture. A walk through the historical city center is a must-do, as well as a bike ride to Valadares Island, a neighborhood in the city where cars are prohibited. A short boat ride takes the tourist to a variety of traditional fishing communities on the other side of the bay. Indigenous land within the Atlantic Forest Great Reserve, Cotinga Island is also the home of a Guarani M’bya community. The beaches of Pontal do Paraná are always appreciated. Despite the influx of summer residents, these beautiful shores are worth visiting all year long and have many amenities for tourists. This region is accessible from Curitiba, taking the highway BR-277 and then PR-412.
Fascinating fauna to see here: Grouper (Epinephelus itajara), Roseate Spoonbill (Platalea ajaja), Guianan Dolphin (Sotalia guianensis), São Paulo Leaf Frog (Phyllomedusa distincta), Southern Royal Flycatcher (Onychorhynchus swainsoni).
Photography by Everson Gelasko & Marcelo Hung