BRAZIL FOR GEM AND MINERAL LOVERS

DAY ONE –  ARRIVE / BELO HORIZONTE / DIAMANTINA
Pick up at the airport in Belo and drive to Diamantina.Hotel: Pousada da Real (www.pousadarealdiamantina.com.br)

We will be picked up at the airport in Belo Horizonte and from the airport will continue driving on the road to Diamantina.
In the early 18th century gold diggers established several small villages in this region. Quite by accident these prospectors made a startling discovery: the white stones that they found strewn about on the ground and that they used as backgammon counters were not pieces of worthless crystal but diamonds.
The village became the town of Diamantina and grew and prospered as diamond mining became more important. The legacy of that period of wealth and prosperity can still be seen in this very picturesque town. This afternoon we visit some of the crystal, gold and diamond dealers in town. Dinner in town

   

DAY TWO –  DIAMANTINA / ARAÇUAI
Drive from Diamantina to Aracuai.
Hotel: Pousadas das Araras (2 nights) (www.pousadararas.com.br)

We leave Diamantina after breakfast and drive to Araçuaí. This small town sits smack in the center of one of Minas Gerais most prolific mining areas. The names of the mines surrounding the town are recognized the world over; Coronel Murta for aquamarine, Rubelita for tourmaline, Itinga and Taquaral for fine rose quartz and tourmaline. In spite of this the town remains very small and unassuming, preserving a very rural feeling. There is just one hotel in town, were some of the earliest guest, arriving just as the hotel opened years ago, and have enjoyed the experience several times since. Many dealers, and “garimpeiros” live in town,there are no gem or mineral shops, all business is conducted from the people’s homes and warehouses. We will try to visit a mine just after arrival. Dinner in town

DAY THREE – ARAÇUAI
Full day in Aracuai and surroundings.
After breakfast we will visit several gem and mineral dealers.Dinner in town. And if possible we may try to visit a mine nearby this afternoon. Return to
the hotel in late afternoon.

DAY FOUR –  ARAÇUAI / TEOFILO OTONI
Drive to Teofilo Otoni.
Hotel: Palmeiras (1 night) (www.hoteldaspalmeiras.com.br)
Breakfast and lunch.

After visiting some dealers this morning we drive to Teófilo where we will arrive in the late morning. This is one of the most interesting towns of Minas Gerais. We will visit gem and mineral dealers. And we will take time to deal with the street vendors in the central square. Here is where these merchants, many of them not older than fourteen or fifteen, peddle their goods.

DAY FIVE –  TEOFILO OTONI /GOVERNADOR VALADARES
Afternoon drive to Governador
Hotel: Spetus (2 nights) – (www.spettus.com.br/index.php?ref=hotel)

We leave Teofilo after lunch today and drive to Governador. A few hours this afternoon to visit dealers in town, like Teofilo Otoni, Governador is located in the heart of Minas Gerais mining district, and it is used as a distribution point for wholesalers.

DAY SIX –  GOVERNADOR VALADARES
Full day in Governador.
Meals: Breakfast and lunch.

DAY SEVEN –  GOVERNADOR VALADARES /OURO PRETO
Drive to Ouro Preto.
Hotel: Solar da Opera (2 nights) (www.hotelsolardaopera.com.br)
Meals: Breakfast and dinner.

DAY EIGHT –  OURO PRETO
A full day in Ouro Preto.
Meals: Breakfast and dinner.

A full day to enjoy Ouro Preto and its surroundings. Today time to explore the town. There is so much iron surrounding Ouro Preto that in the early morning one can smell it in the air. We will visit the Mineral Museum and some of the artistic treasures of the town, like the opera house, the oldest in South America.

DAY NINE –  OURO PRETO /BELO/ DEPART
Drive to Belo airport from Ouro Preto.
Breakfast

EXTENSION TO RIO GRANDE DO SUL

DAY ONE –  PORTO ALEGRE /SOLEDADE
Pick up from Porto Alegre airport and drive to Soledade.
Hotel: Agata (2 nights) -( www.agatahotel.com.br)
Meals: Dinner

DAY TWO – SOLEDADE
A full day to visit dealers and the large warehouses.
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch.

DAY THREE –  SOLEDADE / FREDERICO WESTPHALEN
This morning drive to Frederico Westphalen. Drive to nearby town of Ametista do Sul and sorrundings.
Meals: Breakfast and lunch.

DAY FOUR –  FREDERICO WESTPHALEN / SOLEDADE
After breakfast time to check out other wholesalers in Frederico before departing for Soledade. On arrival in Soledade, visit dealers and warehouses.
Hotel: Agata (1 night)
Meals: Breakfast and lunch.

DAY FIVE – SOLEDADE /PORTO ALEGRE /DEPART
Morning in Soledade. After lunch depart for the airport at Porto Alegre and the connecting flights home.

     


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