"In a beautiful corner of Brazil my beloved land smiles, where the blue sky is indigo color, where the sun so hot feels nicer...".
This verse of "Meu sublime torrão", authored by Genival Macedo, born in João Pessoa, could easily be the "anthem of Paraíba", by the subtlety of the verses and beautiful harmonic overtones about nature, a major pride for people who live in that state.
In Paraíba everything is beautiful, and seems to have been created with a divine hand. And it’s this harmony that determines the lifestyle of its people, style so contagious to all who come to know Paraíba.
The sun shines all year, only giving way to rain during the winter for some days and sometimes for only a few hours, therefore, showing a full range of options for people who choose to visit and experience a paradise still in its raw form.
Founded in 1585, João Pessoa was born already a city. Without ever having gone through designation of village, town or thorp, (since it was founded by the Summit Farm Real one Captaincy of the Crown) is considered the third oldest city in Brazil (Mello, 1987).
At the beginning of colonization, when the Brazilian colony was divided into hereditary captaincies, much of the current Paraiba territory stood in the captaincy of Itamaracá then under the rule of Pero Lopes de Sousa.
Later this captaincy was broken, giving rise to the captaincy of Paraíba (Sampaio, 1980). João Pessoa city was created during the old Colonial System to perform administrative and commercial functions, taking shape from a hill on the right bank of the Sanhauá River (Rodriguez, 1992).
The first chapel was built where nowadays stands the metropolitan cathedral. Dating from the beginning of colonization, it was built for the cult of Nossa Senhora das Neves, patron of the city (Nobrega, 1982).
The Dutch, attracted by the richness of sugar, invaded the city in 1634, passing it to call it “Frederistadt”. And so it remained for 20 years (Sampaio, 1980). Historical records states that the city housed about 1,500 inhabitants and 18 sugar mills in the time of the invasion (Mello, 1987).
After staying for more than three centuries restricted to the banks of the Sanhauá River and to the hill where it was founded, the city now called Joao Pessoa, advances to the east toward the beaches, a growing process of urbanization that it’s still happening today, with its population of over 760 thousand inhabitants.
In addition to the existing natural beauties of the city, the metropolitan area also detains visitation points. At 18 km from the center, in the port city of Cabedelo, stays the Fortress of Santa Catarina, a historical monument of great value and a landmark of Paraiba resistance against the encroachments of the French and Dutch in colonial times. The guns pointed out to sea are sentinels of a glorious past that the present helps to preserve.
The Tambaba Beach is nationally known as one of the national sanctuaries of naturism. Located in the county of Conde, 18 km from João Pessoa, Tambaba is an ecological paradise of great beauty, with its multicolored mazes. Access to this beach is simple; the PB-008 state highway connects the capital to the beach, a trip that takes only 30 minutes. It’s definitely worth a visit.
The river beach Jacaré is another nook of rare beauty. Situated at the mouth of the River Paraíba, in the city of Cabedelo, is a dock for sports boats. The small islands of Stuart and Restinga complete the exotic setting that includes vast wetlands free of human activities and a variety of fauna.
The sunset on the Jacaré beach is a spectacle of extreme romanticism and beauty. The river bathes the bars situated on its banks. Musicians using saxophones and violins perform Ravel's Bolero doing background music for a special and memorable time. The yellow and red colors intertwine in the blue sky brightening the dark waters of the river.
The summer that lasts almost all year round and can be enjoyed in more than 24 miles of waterfront and also the easternmost point of the Americas, located in Cabo Branco Lighthouse, which sits on the beach of the same name. Just these two places are enough attractions for the city of João Pessoa to stand out in the Northeast, but the capital has much more beauty and charm spread across its 211 thousand square kilometers, which surprises visitors and invite them to return.
The waterfront is a chapter apart, clean and warm waters invite the tourists to a wonderful bath in the urban beaches of Cabo Branco, Tambaú and Bessa. The ride on the boardwalk, the fresh air and the feeling that time is passing so slowly are characteristics of the city “where the sun rises first”.
Nature, history , events , monuments , gastronomy , handcrafting and culture are present in virtually all parts of the city , which opens the door to the future with the Cabo Branco Station of Science, Culture and Arts, a work of the architect Oscar Niemeyer who excels in easternmost point on Cabo Branco Beach . More than five thousand square meters area for the promotion of cultural and artistic events that move the capital. Inaugurated in 2008, the building is one of the newest attractions in the city that impresses tourists both by its beauty and the grandiosity of the monument that was placed between the Atlantic Forest reserve and the sea.
The rich houses of the Historical Center of the third oldest city in Brazil leads the visitor to the distant past where he can get close to art-nouveau buildings in the Antenor Navarro Square, from the Portuguese colonial architecture in Cultural Center São Francisco, built in 1589 and considered one of the most Baroque complexes in Brazil . Because of its historical meaning the buildings are protected by the National Historical and Artistic Heritage (IPHAN).
In Solon de Lucena Park, postcard of the city which is fully revitalized, you can admire the work 'A pedra do Reino' (The kingdom’s stone) monument to the genius of the theater and literature of Paraíba, Ariano Suassuna.
The new lighted fountain enchants tourists daily with a spectacle of lights, colors and sounds. The park also serves as a home for many white herons flying smoothly across the city center and feeding with the fish living in the pond. There, the visitor can see the peaceful coexistence between people and nature which is present throughout the whole city.