Our base is in Santarém (FIND OUT MORE BELOW), the main city in the west of Pará. Known as the “Pérola do Tapajós”, it is one of the strongest powers of natural tourism in the state. The municipality of just under 300 thousand inhabitants is only 1h40 by flight from the capital Belém and 3h30 by flight from Brasilia - DF.
Right in front of the city, it is possible to see the first of several natural spectacles in the region: the meeting of rivers that do not mix. On one side the Amazon, with its muddy waters and on the other, the Tapajós with its greenish waters.
The municipality has 1,992 kilometers of exotic and pristine beaches that look more like the sea. This is the case of Alter-do-Chão (FIND OUT MORE BELOW) , known as the “Caribbean Amazon”. There, it is the stage for the largest folklore event in the region, the Çairé, which attracts tourists from all over the world.
In the months from February to August, some beaches even disappear, due to the flood of rivers, but the rest of the year, they reappear with very fine white sand, some with easy access, others completely isolated. Among the best known are: Alter-do-Chão, Ponta do Cururu, Ponta de Pedras, Caraparanaí, Arariá and Maria José.
WHAT'S IN THE REGION WHERE YOU'RE GOING TO PEDAL?
In addition to the most beautiful freshwater beaches in the world, in the region we have the Monte Alegre State Park (PEMA) where there are cave paintings that may have been made by the first men who inhabited the Americas; We also have Belterra, a picturesque town founded by Henry Ford at the height of rubber exploration, which retains elements of American colonization. Alenquer is home to beautiful waterfalls and rock formations sculpted by the wind. And finally, in the Tapajós National Forest (FLONA), we find the powerful mother of all the trees in the Amazon, the Samauma, which reaches up to 70m in height.
Know > ALTER DO CHÃO
Founded on March 6 , 1626 , by the Portuguese Pedro Teixeira . Until the 18th century , the village was mostly inhabited by indigenous Boraris communities. At the beginning of the 20th century , Alter do Chão was one of the transport routes for latex extracted from rubber trees in Belterra and Fordlândia . It was a short period of development for the village. But from the decade of 1950 , was the decline of extractive Amazon and the village was hit by the economic deficit. Since the 1990s until today, the current district bets on tourism to evolve economically, in which it obtained good results.
Still little sought after by tourists, Alter do Chão gained international recognition in 2009, when the English newspaper The Guardian placed it among the ten most beautiful beaches in Brazil. The reason? Numerous islands and extensive stretches of white sand bathed by the green waters of the Tapajós River, a scenario formed during the ebb of the river. But it's not a bad idea to visit Alter during the flood. During the period of exuberance of the waters, you can enjoy boat trips and incursions through the forest.
Get to know > SANTARÉM
Founded on June 22, 1661 , it is one of the oldest cities in the Amazon region. In 1758 it was elevated to the status of a town and almost a century later, as a result of its remarkable development, it was elevated to the status of a city. It is included in the plan of historical cities in Brazil , being one of the oldest and most culturally significant cities in Pará.
Santarém has a natural vocation for ecotourism , community-based tourism, historical and cultural tourism, gastronomic tourism, religious tourism and adventure tourism. It also has great potential to develop other segments such as event and business tourism.
The offer of tourist infrastructure is represented by hotels with good conditions of reception and accommodation, inns, international airport , restaurants , port with a draft to receive transatlantic ships, travel agencies, public security systems, communications sector, bank agencies, retail stores. crafts, transportation services, leisure services and equipment.
One of the cultural manifestations in the city is the Tapajônica ceramics that present representations of humans or animals in relief. This pottery is so perfect that it is compared to the finest Chinese porcelain. There are pieces of Tapajônica ceramics spread across several museums around the world. Another feature is the realism of the representation of man or animal.
Get to know > BELTERRA
After the failure of rubber plantations in Fordlândia , caused by the type of terrain that did not favor the development of rubber plantations (which need a flat terrain, with soil rich in minerals and organic material) and also the infestation by a specific type of pest until then unknown that ended the production of plantations, Henry Ford had to start looking elsewhere for his project to be continued.
Several expeditions were carried out until finding a place that became known as Bela Terra. This area was chosen for its fertile soil of 'Terra Preta'. Bela Terra was ceded by the Brazilian government to the Ford company. About 2,500 acres of the original vegetation on the site were cut down to start the process of implementing Ford's project.
The first workers were hired in 1934, and on May 4 of the same year, the cleaning of rubber plantations, construction of houses and the hospital took place. The architecture of the buildings was inspired by the American model, some of them remain intact today as they were listed and are now historical heritage. There are reports that education in Belterra was of excellent quality as well as in the country where Ford was born. Despite administering the city, Henry Ford never actually came to Belterra, even though he had a house specially built for him. Ford was afraid of tropical diseases.
As Belterra was created for a company, its employees would need a place to live. Therefore, the city was divided into:
Workers' village: it was where the workers lived, it is located on the outskirts of the city and is characterized by small houses.
Monthly village: it was where the employees who received a salary every fortnight lived in this village.
American Village: it was where the doctors and doctors lived, the noble part of the city. Located near the squares, this village had a club frequented by the noble class, where parties and balls took place.
With the American lifestyle of a part of the population, there was a golf course in the city attended only by Americans.
The production and export of latex from Belterra was a source of profit, however, with the emergence of synthetic rubber and the low cost of rubber on the Asian continent, the scenario changed. The investments in Belterra became meaningless and the Ford company gave up on its project, which was planned to last a century. Belterra was repossessed by the Brazilian government in 1945, forming part of the municipality of Santarém. Only on December 29, 1995, Belterra became a municipality, with its own city hall.