itacare - paradisiacal beaches

  • tiririca beach 1
  • surfers at tiririca
  • walk to tiririca
  • one of the town roads
  • tiririca just up ahead - wooohoo!
  • tiririca beach 2
  • lovely forrest backdrop
  • west side of the beach
  • this is what you look back at when in the water
  • more forrest
  • off the lip
  • love this place
  • another main road
  • view of the town
  • no matter how bad things get, you need a satalite dish

We left Salvador at 11pm on Monday the 21st of September and it took us roughly 8 hours to get to Iticare - first stopping in Ilheus and then getting a crappier bus onwards. First impressions of Itacare was that it was exactly the sort of place I wanted to chill out in for a good few days of just surfing and hammock time. In fact, when I first started planning this whole trip of mine, I had already thought of "settling" in Itacare for a couple of weeks. But as is the case with travelling, plans change, and I wouldn't have time to stay here for that long.

Again, arriving here it was so hot, we couldn't be arsed walking to the hostel and took a taxi. And in true South American taxi driver style, the dude ripped us off completely. He told us the hostel was pretty far, but, after driving for probably about 2 minutes, we arrived there and he charged us 10 reais! I told him the way I saw it he was robbing us and he could forget about us using his taxi again. I'm sure he's heard similar complaints from other travellers and doesn't really give a shit. We stayed at Hostel Itacare. It was pretty nice with a small swimming pool, aircon and bar fridge in the dorm and free breakfast but it was also by far the most expensive hostel I';ve stayed in, and supposedly the further down Brazil I go, the more expensive it will get.

After checking in, I was pretty amped to go out for a surf session. First place we went to was the more popular surfer beach called Tiririca, we were told it was a bit of a walk so rather than lugging the board with not knowing if there was any surf we walked out without boards. Arriving at the place I was blown away. Such a beautiful beach and even better, there were decent waves - maybe a little bigger than I've been in before but looking good.

I didn't hesitate, we rushed back to the hostel, I got my board ready, we went back to Tiririca. Now, not sure what happened in the hour or so between first going to the beach and coming back with the board, but the wave situation had changed. Suddenly they looked way bigger and they were really hollow. Still, I was keen to get in. The paddle out was fine, no major problems, but as soon as I got to the lineup a massive set came in, and I started thinking I may be in over my head. Didn't paddle for any of those just to have a look first. Then another set came in and I paddled for a wave and went over the falls - these things were really hollow. Another time I paddled for one that just crumbled away and then turned to see a huge hollow one ready to break on me. Got tossed around like a rag doll with that one. For the remainder of the hour or so session, I got my ass handed to me several times by mother nature, and left the water feeling very dejected. We then headed out to Praia da Ribeira which we were told had fatter, less hollow waves. The session was quite enjoyable and I perked up a bit, but was still really pissed off with the morning session.
That night (Tuesday night) we figured we'd go see what the bars in town had to offer. Walking around town we realised this was definitely low season. None of the bars had any life in it - it was also relatively early. We eventually found one bar with a few people in it and sat down for a few beers. After a while we realised the bar may have been a gay bar, as there absolutely no female patrons - I started winding Tav up about it too. We had a pretty early night as we were both keen on having a full day's surf the next day. The next morning we got up earlish and headed out to praia da Ribeira where I had a decenet enough session, and Tav took out a fish board he was hoping to buy. The waves at Ribeira boosted my confidence a bit and after that session we headed back to Tiririca for round 2. The confidence boost earlier that day definitely helped, and I paddled into a lot more waves and eventhough they were pretty much as hollow as they were the day before I handled them okay. That evening I was exhausted and decided to take it easy, also because I wanted to go for a dawn session on Thursday morning.

The dawn session was not too bad, but I didn't stay out for long as the previous days' sessions had taken their toll. Just chilled out for the rest of the day and by evening we were both geared up to go party. For dinner I had a couple of Acrajes. They're a type of bread made from beens, and then stuffed with a pumpkin type of sause, soem been or lentil sauce and then either prawns or bacalhau. Pretty damn tasty, but let's just say that bread made from beans is quite the gas causer! We headed back into the little town and you could see the weekend was coming. There were loads more people, and even the previous night's "gay" bar was a bit more evenly balanced. We sat at bar Brasilia and sipped on some ice cold beers. They were going down beautifully and the reggae music the live band was playing made it quite a festive evening. I had one strange experince though. There was a group of local girls who were taking sneaky photos of us and then one of them was doing some serious psycho staring - not sure if that was meant to be a turn on.

Needless to say Friday morning there was not much going on in Pedrito's world. The days was spent mostly in the hammock and the pool. By late afternoon I decided to finally get my lazy ass out of the hostel and headed out to Tiririca for a sunset surf. It was high tide and the waves weren't as hollow. I paddled out and caught a good few playful waves. As the sun set, I turned around and for the first time really appreciated the beauty of this beach. It's a big cove and all along the sides there's a lush rain forrest and loads of coconut trees. The sun was setting behind the forrest and the sky went all shades of orange. For a few mintues I just sat on by board and didn't paddle into waves. Just sat there appreciating this amazing environment I'm in and just feeling like one of the luckiest people around.

After that session I was on a complete high, and then we got news that there was a reggae beach party that night. The perfect combination, a great surf session and then chilling at a beach party. We met up with some German lads that had also been in for the sunset session and did a bit of a bar crawl before heading out to the beach party. We left the beach party when the sun was coming up, so I knew then that Saturday would be a right off.

On Saturday we finally got some other guests in the hostel. Until then it had pretty much just been Tav and I. The dude who checked into our dorm was a 22 year old Brasilian guy from Santa Catarina province (right in the south of Brasil) who is doing a road trip all the way to the north of Brazil on his 125cc motorbike. Quite a funny dude, probably because of the copious amounts of weed he smokes, and I had a good chat with him about his trip and about mine. He also gave me names of places he's seen along the way that he says are unmissable.

It's now Sunday the 27th of September and I'm on a 22 - 24 hour bus ride to Rio. We've been on it since 4pm after catching a 2.5 hour bus from Itacare to Itabuna. The day today started with an early morning surf at Tiririca. Had a great session, except for one relatively big wave that broke so hard on me I didn't know which way was up and which way was down as it took me under - weird sensation not knowing if you're swimming up for air or down for sand The last wave I caught was beautiful and as I pulled out of it I considered paddling out for more but then decided that that wave was the perfect way to say goodbye to Itacare.