- BEST FOR: Foodies.
- WHERE: In the state of Pará, visiting its capital city, Belém, and the Amazonian town of Santarém.
- WHEN: Better from August to February.
- HOW LONG: From 3 to 5 days.
Get the real taste of the Amazonian flavors.
One word defines Belém do Pará: extravagance. Loud, garish, sweltering. Its spices could hardly be different. The city is known as the gateway to the Amazon precisely because the forest peoples used to frequent the market to sell their herbs and roots. Getting to know Belém through its herbs is to share something of the feeling of the first travelers to make contact with the region’s river-dwelling and forest-dwelling indigenous peoples. This is a journey to learn from Brazil’s original peoples something of their ancestral wisdom.
Stories you’ll be able to tell when you get back:
Amazonian cuisine is prepared using herbs and spices that are closely linked to the beliefs of the people of the region. Visit the Ver-o-Peso market, meet a faith healer, see the harvesting of the açaí berries, cook alongside some of Brazil’s best cooks: an experience uniting the flavors and wisdom of a Brazilian indigenous river-dwelling population.
Discover traditional Amazonian cuisine through the region’s herbs and spices: markets and museums, legends and charms, spirituality and everyday life.
- Preparation of “garrafadas” and charms in the Ver-as-Ervas Association.
- Conversational lecture by Dona Coló and Beth Cheirosinha at the Ver-o-Peso.
- Classes in Amazonian cooking and rituals at Iacitatá: Tainá Marajoara.
- Excursion with Tainá Marajoara to see herb gardens and cultivation around Belém.
- Jambu-cachaça tasting and a class about this herb at Bar Meu Garoto.
- Gourd-making workshop in Santarém.
- An ayahuasca “trabalho” (lit. labor—meaning consumption of the herb) in TerrAmor.