Enjoy an incredible mixture of beauties and flavors on the tour Cocoa and Chocolate. Passion: that’s how many of us describe the feeling we have for chocolate – one of the most consumed products in the world. But not many know the origin of this addictive and sweet product made from cocoa. Cocoa is a big fruit, which is harvested and reserved for a few days to reach the perfect ripeness. After the seeds are separated, they’re dried, backed, fermented and grounded until the process results in two products: the butter and the powder. We’ll se closely the whole process, from tree to bar.

Day 1 We’ll make an unforgettable excursion through the fazenda where we’ll walk around the organic cocoa plantation. We’ll get to know the history of cocoa, its harvesting, drying, fermentation and we’ll have the chance to taste this very special fruit. We’ll follow the artisanal production of Blanc de cacau made from the honey of the fruit: an irresistible flavor that you have never tasted before. We’ll make an excursion to Ilhéus visiting the Cathedral São Sebastião, Ponto Chic Ice cream shop, Teatro Municipal de Ilhéus (theatre), Casa Jorge Amado, Quarteirão Jorge Amado (pedestrian street), church São Jorge, the mansion of Colonel Misael Tavares, the palace Paranagua e the craftwork market. We’ll also see the bar Vesúvio, that became internationally famous with the novel Gabriela Clove and Cinnamon by Jorge Amado and the Bataclan cabaret, currently a cultural space and restaurant.

Day 2 Excursion to the cocoa farm producing Mendoá chocolates. The traditional harvesting of cocoa with the protection of the rainforest to shade the cocoa trees is called the Cabruca system. Chocolates are made here using vanguard Brazilian technology and by selecting the best beans. All steps occur at the fazenda, from tree to bar. Besides the view of the traditional drying “barcaças” where the beans are dried, the fazenda also offers beautiful scenery with the chapel and the river Almada that passes through the propriety. The colonial style of the main house hosts a museum with objects belonging to the intendant of Ilhéus, colonel Domingos Adami. After that we’ll have a typical lunch as it used to be served to the colonels, made by native cooks, on the veranda of the colonel’s house by the river Almada.

Day 3 We will visit CEPLAC (government institution for research and development of cocoa agriculture). There not only will we learn everything about cocoa but also about chocolate. We’ll get to know the entire production process and do some tasting too! After that we’ll visit an organic farm producing for the chocolate brand Modaka Cacau Gourmet. With many water sources and 4.000 native trees protecting the cocoa trees following the Cabruca system, this farm is a real ecological sanctuary hosting a rich natural biodiversity patrimony. The visit includes lunch and excursion to see the tree to bar production.

Day 4 On that day we’ll go in the direction of Itacaré to visit a cocoa fazenda working with ecotourism. This small farm is located in the APA Itacaré-Serra Grande (Area for environmental protection). In this tropical heaven we’ll see how tourism can help to preserve natural and cultural patrimony in a sustainable way, with a minimized environmental impact. The excursion includes a delicious vegetarian lunch at the farm. After that, we’ll go to Taboquinhas to visit a fazenda with an artisanal system of chocolate making. The fazenda is located on the margins of the river Rio de Contas and is surrounded by decorative gardens and natural pools. We’ll visit the cocoa plantation, chocolate making, main house and gardens.

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