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Some of the best spots to visit in Paraty can only be seen on a boat trip.

8 Epically Fun Things to Do in Paraty, Brazil

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Ready to chase waterfalls? How about beach hop on a boat excursion? Or maybe you'd like to hike and see some stunning views? Whatever your travel style is, you'll find that there are so many things to do in Paraty, Brazil.


We originally came for a couple of days, and just kept extending our time because we loved it so much. Just a short ride from some of the most popular cities in Brazil, Paraty makes the perfect getaway for adventure lovers and beach bums alike.


Visiting Paraty can be quite overwhelming, which is why we've created this guide to break down everything you need to know. Here are all of the best things to do in Paraty, Brazil, as well as any other info you may need. 


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Where is Paraty in Brazil?

Paraty is located on the southern tip of the state of Rio de Janeiro. It is part of the Costa Verde, which is a region on the shores of the Atlantic in the south of Brazil.

where is Paraty

Paraty is just a few hours south of Rio de Janeiro.


How to Get to Paraty, Brazil

Paraty is 3 1/2- 4 hours south of the city of Rio de Janeiro, and 4 hours north east of Sao Paulo. We rented a car from Rio and drove, but you can also take a local bus from either city, which goes right into the center of Paraty.


Here are some local buses that you can book:


Here is a site you can use for car rentals:


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Entry Requirements for Brazil

Before traveling anywhere new it's important to put into consideration any requirements you may need to enter the country. Here are both the visa and Covid requirements to keep in mind when traveling to Paraty, Brazil.


Visa Entry Requirements For Brazil

The first time that I traveled to Brazil I actually needed a visa to visit. The last time I went though, I brought my visa, only to find out that US nationals no longer need one. 


The nationalities that are exempt from tourist visas in Brazil include AndorraArgentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Bermuda, Bolivia, Canada, ChileColombiaCosta RicaDenmarkEcuador, Finland, France, GermanyGreece, Japan, Iceland, IrelandItaly, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Morocco, Namibia, The Netherlands, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, San Marino, South Africa, SpainSuriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, United StatesUnited Kingdom, Uruguay, and Venezuela.


Nationalities that are part of the Mercosur region don't have to enter Brazil with their passport, as they can simply just bring their ID card. The countries that are included in Mercosur are Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay.


Covid Entry Requirements For Brazil

All travelers over the age of 12 need to present either a Covid vaccination, or a negative RT-PCR test in order to visit Brazil. If you are not vaccinated, you 'll need to take a test within one day of traveling, and the results must be in English, Spanish, or Portuguese.


It's also important to note that inside the airport they are still requiring masks to be worn inside the security area. Make sure to have one on you so that you don't have to purchase one inside the airport.

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Local Adjustments for Traveling to Paraty, Brazil

Whenever traveling somewhere new, there are things that may be different from the place you are coming from. These are what we like to call "local adjustments", and are something we include in every destination guide that we write. Here are a few of the local adjustments to keep in mind while traveling to Paraty, Brazil.


Language in Paraty

The official language in Brazil is Portuguese. We speak both English and Spanish, and found that there were a decent amount of people that spoke either one of the two (particularly Spanish due to the number of tourists from Argentina and Uruguay). We do suggest learning some of the basics of Portuguese to get by, as in some circumstances you may be able to haggle better.


Currency in Paraty

The currency used in Brazil is the Real. Currently, (April 2024) the exchange rate is 5.29 Brazilian Real for every 1 USD or Euro, and 6.57 Brazilian Real for every British pound. We found many places in Paraty only accepted either cash or PIX (a Brazilian bank transfer system). The ATMs are limited, so make sure to take out enough cash in advance.


Plugs Used in Brazil

Brazil has outlets for plug types C & N, which are the ones that have two round prongs and a grounding pin. Brazil operates on a 127/220 V supply voltage and 60 Hz.


Can You Drink Tap Water in Paraty?

Generally speaking, the water isn't really safe or advised to be consumed throughout the country. We suggest buying big jugs of water, and refilling an insulated water bottle so that you can always stay hydrated (ps: it gets super hot in Paraty!)


Tipping Culture in Paraty, Brazil

The tipping culture in Brazil is pretty similar to many other countries around the world. We suggest tipping an extra 10% while in restaurants, and to do so in cash.

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Things to Do in Paraty, Brazil

Now that you know almost everything you need to know about visiting, here are the best things to do in Paraty, Brazil.


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things to do in Paraty, Brazil pin
things to do in Paraty, Brazil pin

1. Explore the Old Town

Paraty was settled by the Portuguese in 1667, and you can notice a particular style in the architecture around the old town.


The cobblestone streets and colorfully accented buildings make this one of the most picturesque cities in Brazil, and we highly suggest giving yourself a few hours to get lost in the streets, browse the local shops, and just soak up the great energy of Paraty.


Old town of Paraty. things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Old town of Paraty. things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Old town of Paraty, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

Paraty is super colorful and colonial looking.

2. Discover the Hidden Beaches of Paraty

When we arrived to Paraty we didn't realize just how much there was to see and do. There are 65 islands and over 200 beaches to explore! Some can only be reached by boat, while some can only be reached by hiking.


One of our favorite beaches was Ilha dos Cocos, which can only reached on certain boat excursions, or by renting a boat from one of the locals.

beaches, best things to do in Paraty, Brazil

Paraty has some of the most beautiful beaches in the south of Brazil.

3. Take a Boat Trip

Speaking of boat trips, this is truly number one on our list of things to do in Paraty. As we said, there are so many beaches and islands to explore, and the best way to experience as many as possible is by doing a boat excursion.

boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

One of the best ways to explore Paraty is by boat.


Just head over to the pier in the old town, and you'll see countless boats lined up- some of them bigger tours, some of them shared with smaller groups, and others that you can rent our for your group.

Boats in Paraty
boat trip, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

You can easily find a boat by going to the pier in the old town.

The perk of the bigger ones is that they are more affordable (ours was 70 Real/person), and some of them have amenities like slides, or small boats to personally take you onto each beach. The perk about having your own is that you have more flexibility with your schedule, and you can reach certain pockets that the bigger beaches may not be able to reach.


things to do in Paraty- visiting the islands
things to do in Paraty- visiting the islands
things to do in Paraty- visiting the islands

Some of the best spots to visit in Paraty can only be seen on a boat trip.


4. Go Waterfall Chasing

Paraty is so unique because it has both jungle and beach, meaning there is also a ton of waterfalls to experience, just minutes away from the beach!

waterfalls in Paraty, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

There are a bunch of waterfalls around Paraty.

Some of the popular ones to visit are Pit of the Englishman waterfall and Cachoeira da Pedra Branca. One of the most unique ones is Cachoeira Sacos Bravo, which forms a natural rock pool along the coast.


It can only be accessed by a two hour hike, so make sure to ask a local about the details before attempting it on your own. (We unfortunately didn't have time to do this one, but the pictures were stunning).


Here are some fun waterfall tours that you can sign up for:

5. Go Down a Natural Waterslide

Speaking of waterfalls, we saved this one for after, as it was one of our favorite things to do in Paraty, and it is quite special that the other waterfalls in the area.


Cachoeira do Toboga is actually a giant natural waterslide! It has small falls at the top, a suspension bridge across it, a secret cave, and even a restaurant on site. It looks pretty intimidating, but is super fun and safe to go down. 

Tarzan waterfall, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Tarzan waterfall, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Tarzan waterfall, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Tarzan waterfall, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

Cachoeira do Tarzan is a natural waterslide that you can go down.


There was actually a guide there when we went, and it truly made our experience so amazing. He helped choose the safest positions, pushed us down for momentum, took videos for us, and even helped us access the secret cave under the falls.


Make sure to look for Jaquisson- he does everything for completely free so make sure to tip him for providing such amazing experiences!


6. Visit a Cachacaria

One of the most authentic things to do in Paraty is to visit a cachacaria. These are where they distill the famous Brazilian liquor. We personally recommend Alambique Paratiana, as they do half hour tours of the cachacaria so you can learn all about how it's made, and do an extensive tasting afterwards.


Cachacaria, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Cachacaria, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Cachacaria, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Cachacaria, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

One of the most fun things to do in Paraty is to visit a Cachacaria.


7. Hike Up to the Best Viewpoint in Paraty

Paraty is seriously stunning, and every place we went took our breath away. But there was one place that took our breath away even more, which was Mamangua Sugarloaf Peak.


This is the best view of Paraty, and definitely a must for things to do in Paraty. It's no easy feat, but surely worth it! That's why we dedicated an entire guide to help you get there step by step.


Mamangua Sugarloaf peak, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Mamangua Sugarloaf peak, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Mamangua Sugarloaf peak, things to do in Paraty, Brazil

Hiking Mamangua Sugarloaf Peak is one of the best things to in Paraty, Brazil.


8. Relax at the Beaches of Trinidade

There is so much adventure and exploring to do in Paraty, but it's also a great place to relax and enjoy the stunning beaches that it offers without hopping non-stop from one to the other.


Trinidade, things to do in Paraty, Brazil
Trinidade, things to do in Paraty, Brazil