Rodovia da Graciosa to Morretes!

Again, looking in my vault for pictures, and bring to life in my blog as memory lane I dig up way south into the beautiful Brazil to find this gem .Now I have written several post on Morretes, and told you lived in Curitiba, and worked in Piraquara, and speak the language but always leave something out. Therefore, let me tell you a bit more on Morretes , a town in the State of Paranà , and my road warrior adventures in Brazil.  Hope you enjoy the post as I!

Morretes is a historic city rich in colonial architecture, with preserved old mansions, which drives local tourism, in addition to having restaurants that offer the typical dish of the region: barreado. It was served to me alone in a big table full of dishes by ponte velha (see post). This along could be worth the trip me think!

The story of barreado goes as people gathered in harvesting and building churches and schools. In these efforts, they always served cachaça and meals with a lot of substance, such as barreada meat, which was considered simple and easy to prepare, and could also be reheated several times in a wood fire. which is made inside a heavy clay pot (clay cauldron), with a heavy lid of the same material, made of clay, which is always put on fire, to keep it always super hot, close to approximately 100 degrees Celsius. The dish consists of one or more types of second-rate and lean beef, such as palette, titty and duckling, seasoned with onion, garlic, pork bacon, black pepper, bay leaf and cumin and cooked until it falls apart. The preparation is mixed with cassava flour ,until it gets the consistency that gives the dish its name, and served with rice and sliced ​​banana. The secret in the preparation is the cooking time in the clay pot ,about twenty hours , enough to shred all the meat and keep it on the fire all the time. Once cooked, the meat’s fibers are loosened, resulting in a thick, flavorful broth seasoned with regional taste. To keep the flavor of the meat, it is necessary to seal the pan with a mass of flour and water to keep the steam inside the pan (cauldron). Banana brandy can be served as an aperitif, with wine being the traditional drink to accompany the dish, as well as grape juice.

The most scenic way to get to Morretes which I did in my Chevy Prisma ! Take the PR-410 , the Estrada da Graciosa, which ends in São João da Graciosa, a road that uses the old route of tropeiros (herds cowboys) toward the coast of Paranà State, connecting the town of Quatro Barras, in the Curitiba Metro Region to the cities of Antonina and Morretes The road crosses the most preserved stretch of the Atlantic Forest of Brazil, marked by the tropical forest and the beautiful streams that originate in the Serra do Mar. From the bottom of the mountain range, you can take the BR-277 highway, which connects Paranaguá to Curitiba, taking the access to Morretes. (also done), The approximate distance from Curitiba to Moretes is 69 km on the Rodovia da Graciosa by Porto de Cima, (see pic) and then Morretes, The Graciosa road is a historic path between Curitiba and the coast of Paraná State. The landscapes are beautiful, going down Serra do Mar on a sunny day is a great tour. I took leaving from the center of Curitiba, it is 40 km along the BR-116, duplicated Rodovia Regis Bitencurt, to the portal of Estrada da Graciosa. Here the Estrada da Graciosa, Rodovia PR-410, is a 40 km long highway that crosses Serra do Mar, connecting Curitiba to the charming historic cities of Antonina and Morretes. Even today, Estrada da Graciosa maintains 8 km paved with cobblestones, with many winding curves surrounded by flowery slopes, peaks, mountains, waterfalls and beautiful landscapes.

morretes rodovia gracioza porto de cima 2008

The Graciosa State Park is a conservation unit located in the town of Morretes. Located in Serra do Mar, in the region, there are two important state parks: Graciosa State Park and Roberto Ribas Lange State Park. Along the highway, 7 corners rest stops are maintained, containing leisure facilities (barbecue grills, restrooms, viewpoints) that facilitate access for visitors who want to know the beauties of Serra do Mar. In the town of São João da Graciosa, at the bottom of the Serra, there is a fork in the road: the PR-411 goes right to the center of Morretes as well,

A wonderful and recommended ride at least once as I prefer going by car is the Serra Verde Train. The train leaves from Curitiba and crosses the Serra do Mar towards Morretes. During the tour, passengers will experience an adventure along the Paranaguá-Curitiba Railway, which passes through more than 70 km of stone walls, tunnels, mountains, dams, bridges and waterfalls. Serra Verde Express is the company that makes the route, with daily departures from Curitiba during the months of January, February, July and December , high season. From March to June and from August to November, the train leaves on weekends and some holidays. Check the days and departure times of the train. The city of Morretes is the terminus of the tourist train of the Serra Verde Express, which connects it to the capital of Paraná, Curitiba. The official Serra Verda Express train:

Some further information to know : Where the Estrada da Graciosa began is where Shopping Mueller is now located, on Av. Cândido de Abreu, 127, in downtown Curitiba.(see post), The duration of the trip by car and without stopping in the corners rest stops, the journey can be done in about an hour and a half. Always do please check the weather to avoid traveling in heavy fog or rain in the mountaneous area which can be dangerous. The trip has plenty of curves, which makes you think you on a grand prix course ! You should be very careful as the road has no shoulder and has many sharp curves. The speed limit accordingly is maximum on some stretches of 40 or 60 km/h and truck and bus traffic is not allowed.

The City of Morretes  on things to see

The Paranà State tourist office on Morretes

There you go another small spot in the world map for me but always thankful of the welcome and the experience by all locals. Something to remember forever. Enjoy Morretes, Paranà, Brazil as I did.

And remember, happy travels ,good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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