One of the must-see tours for anyone going to Belém do Pará is to visit Combu Islandwhich is about a 15-minute boat ride from the state capital. The island is the closest to Belém and is well known for the production of açaí and cocoa..
COMBU ISLAND IN BELÉM
To get to Combu Island, just take a boat from Belém (more tips at the end of the post). The path is very smooth and fast. On the way, it is possible to observe how the people of the island live and what daily life is like on the banks of the river.. As we went on a Monday, we had the opportunity to see several boats heading towards Belém to take açaí.
Along the way, the guide will tell you details about the lives of the five generations of residents who have passed through there. Nowadays, about 200 families live on the island of Combu, each of which has six to 10 members. Due to the easy access to Belém, many young residents are able to go to the capital to study without having to move to another city.
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COMBU ISLAND CHOCOLATE
Anyone who goes to Combu Island cannot fail to try Dona Nena’s famous chocolate, The Daughter of Combu. Since 2006, she has been working on the rescue of culture in an area of environmental and sustainable protection, making interventions to improve cocoa production.
It all came about when, with financial difficulties, she realized that she could sell the artisanal chocolate that her family made for her own consumption. Public acceptance was so great that chef Thiago Castanho, one of the most awarded in Brazil, became his partner and took his chocolate to serve and sell in his restaurants..
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Now, with several other restaurants in Belém using its chocolate as a raw material, there are days when its production does not meet demand. There are 80 kg produced per month between 100% cocoa bars, cocoa powder, brigadeiro and others.
But as living on an island still has its difficulties, Dona Nena often needs to dribble the lack of energy. It’s just a strong wind or rain, which ends the light. As a result, she is often unable to make her chocolates and refined cocoa.
During the tour we took with Dona Nena, we heard her story up close, got to know a little about her plantations and the entire artisanal process from cocoa to chocolate. And, of course, we also tried two types of brigadeiro and cupuaçu sweet. Dona Nena also offers options for tours with breakfast, boat and chocolate tasting.. You must schedule at least one week in advance. You can do it by phone by contacting Professor Mário Cesar (91 99388-8885) or via email [email protected].
Our tour of Combu Island ended in style. we went to the restaurant Saldosa Maloca (writes with the same L) which is by the river and overlooks Belém. In addition to all this, you can take a bath in the river and get some sun. Not to mention, of course, the food, which was delicious. We had crab shells as a starter and tambaqui with rice and vinaigrette as the main course.. The restaurant is open from Friday to Monday and on holidays. We tell all our experience in this post.
HOW TO GET TO COMBU ISLAND
Some agencies in Belém do the complete tour, but there is also a way to go alone, combining with a boatman. The ticket costs on average 5 reais and boarding is at Praça Princesa Isabel, in the neighborhood of Condor. People usually do this tour more on weekends. From Monday to Friday it is not always so easy to find boats there.
As we were in a large group and on a closed trip, we did another type of tour, but they indicated the boatman Rosilvado (91 99903-3314). I don’t know his service, but it’s worth getting in touch to find out more.
As we said in the post, whoever wants to have breakfast at Daughter of Combugives Dona Babyyou should contact them directly (91-99388-8885 or [email protected]).
» MORE ABOUT COMBU ISLAND: Who also visited the island was Angelicawith the program stars of Brazilto get to know Dona Nena’s chocolate up close (Watch the video).
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+ Saldosa Maloca: Disca restaurant on the island
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* Journalists traveled at the invitation of the SETUR – PAbut all opinions given here are unbiased and reflect their actual experiences.
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