It all started in December 29, 2010. I had a drink with one of my friends in the Notaris, a grand cafe in Alkmaar, The Netherlands. Nothing out of the ordinary. Then I saw that beautiful Brazilian girl.
We entered into a conversation and she explained that she was on holiday with her friend. Anyway, I found myself lost in love on first sight that night. Until this happening I lived a quite organized life with a good job, house and car. Satisfied with everything in my pretty well structured environment.
She went back to Brazil, but we skyped and talked as good as every day. Eventually after some months, I decided to book a flight to Brazil and visit her. That holiday in Manaus was my first experience in Brazil. During time our affection grew stronger and stronger. We had some more travels to each others country before we decided that one of us should move permanently, so that we could be together. And that is why I decided to leave everything behind in order to start a new life with my sweetheart.
The move to Brazil.
Inevitably I had to quit my job and sell my apartment. In February 2012 I took my belongings, a flight to Manaus and started a completely new life, far away from my family and my secure Dutch environment. Yes, I took the risk to move to the unknown.
The first months were great, but after some time insecurity started to build up. I discovered how hard it was to find a job. Money disappeared as snow under the Brazilian sun and the culture is almost the opposite of that in Holland. I was forced to adjust myself to many things. There and than I realized how easy live in Holland was for me, with almost everything securely in place. Than it became apparent to me that I took this for granted all those years.
After a few more months in Manaus I was at the point of return to Holland, caused by lack of money and no job for the desperately needed income. We agreed that we would try one more month and than…. something marvelous happened: I received a call from a big international company that wanted to hire me. I was over the moon, it was exactly what we needed.
Manaus, March 2015.
Looking back fills me with happiness, really happy with the step I made, no regrets at all. Manaus is awsome, the people are so friendly and hospitable. They live their tranquil lives despite circumstances. Hurry up is an unpopular word here. To be in a hurry, as is almost normal in Holland, is avoided here at all costs. This sometimes is still a problem within me that I have to overcome. In Holland, when you ask to do something, it happens fast. Not here, though. Action here is taken at their right moment, in the fulness of time, to use a biblical frase for the phenomenon. Even buying something in the supermarket can easily take up an hour.
But I like the brazilian life style. I don’t see super stressed people here. Nothing has to happen yesterday. Tranquil is the word they love. I am quick to adapt to it. What I admire here most of all is the awesome Amazon Rainforest and the mighty Amazon River. I assure you that, when you like traveling you really need to travel to Manaus, take a river trip and permit the Amazon to impress you. Its uniqueness does flabbergast you for sure. The animals, birds, butterflies, fish, insects and vegetation offer a myriad of bright colors in beautiful settings.
The Photo Gallery on my Amazon-Exploring site is a good starting point to discover there what I try to explain to you about the specialities of the Amazon. In short: my future in Manaus Amazon, Brazil, looks bright. I am glad that I dared pursue my dream.
By Cristina Smet de Melo
Cristina and Marcio
Pousada (B & B) Bela Bahia is our dream place on the beach where people can experience adventures and unwind in a mild tropical Bahia climate. Me, a Flemish woman who loves life on our tropical beach, together with my husband Marcio, a local fisherman here in Poças, Conde, Bahia. We enjoy to render our services to the visitors of our guesthouse and to make them acquaintance with this beautiful part of the world. We have fun in giving abundant personal attention to the Bela Bahia lodgers. In a previous life I, Cristina, presented radio programs for Belgium’s Radio 2 and acted as commercial voice for the advertisement industry. Currently we run our enterprise since 2005.
What we offer
In addition to 3 comfortable guest rooms, a swimming pool and a tropical beach next door, we also offer day trips and complete package tour vacations. You can choose from existing packages, or compose your own package to tailor to your own preference.
Day trip arrangements include a theme of your interest, e.g., sports, fishing, excursions etc. A package tour can range from a few days Aracajú town, a Salvador city tour, countryside sight seeing or hiking through famous Chapada Canyon. There are stunning Caves, Waterfalls and Rock formations in the Chapada Diamantina National Park, an international highly appreciated Eco paradise not far from Salvador de Bahia.
Trips and package tours are each for groups of up to 4 persons with guidance in Dutch, French or English. This creates a relaxed atmosphere where everything happens at your own pace and for an unforgettable holiday!
Our guests say: Going out with Cristina and Marcio is a marvelous way to really learn to know Bahia, Brazil. We felt at home, safe and understood, because they know the people and the area and speak the language. Not insignificant in a country where almost all people only speak Portuguese.
Welcome to Bela Bahia, Poças, Brazil.
Cristina and Marcio
By Cabral Tavares
My name Cabral Tavares. I followed my dream and bought a bakery in Barra Grande, already some timer ago. Barra Grande is a place without car traffic, no sidewalks or asphalt (concrete) and only a few cars. In average I spent 3 minutes to get home. I have a beach at 300 meters from where I live. Indeed, paradise here.
Before I was living in Sao Paulo among the 18 million inhabitants and with 50 km daily congestion. It makes me happy that I escaped from it and able to talk about the many good things of Barra Grande. Everybody loves this picturesque place. Everything moves differently here, say much slower than in the rest of the world. Everything is done with enough respect to not hurt the Eco system, our beautiful environment.
It is my desire that everyone in the world could get to know this paradise. That more people will come, little by little. it is no big city where beauty disappears. Of course, when you are here, you hhave to see me. Our bakery has many good things to offer for your Café de Manha (breakfast) and the afternoon coffee time.
When you visit us please bare in mind that we close from 12:00 to 16:00 for a time of relaxation and open again from 6:00 to 20:30. This working scedule adds up to a life that makes me happy here. I have fun in the life I live in Barra Grande.
My friend Jac, It was pleasure to write this for you. Getting to know people like you is just another of those nice things in Barra Grande, Love and Abraços (Hugs) to both of you…
Personal note: Cabral is a very lively, cheerful and busy man, not only busy with baking bread. Organizing a party in his bakery / cafeteria, with some nice live music, is something he does regularly. By now, he is therefore quite well known in Barra Grande.
You can find Padaria do Cabral on the street that runs from the pier and past the main square (about 300 meters). Beyond the central square it is 100 meters on the right.
We are Stefano and Michela, born, raised and living in Milan for most of our life. We love a simple life in a simple within a pleasant environment and to share our passion for cooking and eating with the people around us.
We decided to change our life and take the courage to start all over in a different place, but.. where? First of all, on a quiet and safe place, close to the sea.
Unfortunately we didn’t have enough money to buy / rent a restaurant in Italy, so we decided to open our mind.
Why not Brazil?
Okay, let’s go to Brazil! It was a very nice holiday, we felt in a good mood and were looking for a small village in Bahia. We discovered ‘Barra Grande’ and decided to begin a new life in this marvelous place, situated on the head of the Maraú Peninsula, surrounded by the bay of Camamu and the Atlantic Ocean with the village itself set in lush tropical nature. We have never had regrets of our move from Milan, Italy to Barra Grande, Bahia, Brazil. It is giving us great satisfaction and the opportunity to grow professionally while living in an unforgettable place. Hope to see you soon in Barra Grande and most welcome to be our guest.
Personal note of the site administrator.
They are really friendly, deliver a high level of personalised service and… serve out really tasteful food for a somewhat less expensive price than usual over there. Good ambiance, a nice facility, but, yes a but. Their restaurant is not where most people walk. You have to have some luck to find them, or you must ask for them.
Ristorante Sapori d’Italia
(translated: Taste of Italy)
Rua Dr. Chiquinho
We met in summertime 2011 while staying in Bahia Brazil. The area they live in is really unforgettable.