The #SambaCycle nearly ended in Pipa, not because of any problem, but because I could very happily have stayed in this little beach paradise for the next month!
After spending Sat night in Mamanguape before cruising 50km further up the BR-101 on Sunday, it was a 25km detour off the highway to get to Pipa along a road with some painfully steep rises, but on arrival I realised it was worth it. However, I only had two hours to look around before sunset and then had to leave the next morning – story of my journey across Brazil; seeing loads of places for a very short amount of time. I checked into the very cool Sugar Cane Hostel and met roommates Mike, a surfer from Canada, and Steph, a seasoned traveller from France, took a walk to and then along the beach, and later had a nice evening including a few beers with the fellow hostel guests – actually felt like a normal backpacker for a bit.
Another stroll the next morning was productive as I saw a beach, well sand, footy match and managed to buy a pump and adaptor to use for inflating my new Watford FC matchball, which I won from Mitre via Twitter and my parents brought over to give me in Recife!
Later on Monday I arrived in Natal and made my way to the family home of my Couchsurfing host Denis, which is in a lovely condominium built on some sand dunes!
The next day he drove me to my parents’ hotel in Ponte Negra and kindly took us for a great little sightseeing tour:
That evening super-host Denis took us out for dinner to his brother’s fantastic Japanese restaurant Takami Sushi House and then to the Arena das Dunas to watch local team America win 3-0 versus Nautico (from Recife) in the Copa do Brasil! More about the stadium to follow in my next post…