25 June, 2014

Pretty Olinda

Olinda is a small picturesque town located just north of Recife.  Literally translated, "o linda" means "the pretty one."  Early Portuguese settlers built the city in the 1530's on a hill as a means of defense against neighboring Dutch settlements, who at one point burned it to the ground.

The central area is currently a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the best way to visit is simply to wander up and down the labyrinth of narrow cobblestone streets.  The day we went was a bit wet and rainy but that didn't dampen (pun intended) the beauty and charm several hundred years of history has made.

Igreja do Carmo, built in 1580, is the first church in the Americas of the
Roman Catholic order of Carmelites.

Walking out front of the Convento de São Francisco, the oldest Franciscan
convent in Brazil.

Alissa posing with a "costume" used in a past Carnaval.
In Olinda the parade is free and takes place in the street
with no bleachers or set spectator areas. 
Oh, what these streets have seen over the years...

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