We arrived in Natal in the afternoon and booked into our hostel (Lua Cheia). The hostel had been built in the shape of a castle, complete with draw bridge and towers. Our room had bars on the window !
Monica´s parents were already in Punta Negra but were expecting us the following day so we surprised them by turning up at their hotel (Rifoles) and calling their room. It was a very nice surprise for them (we hope !!). In the evening we had dinner near our hostel at restaurant Galo do Alto (very good spaghetti Carbonara!).
The following day we transferred our stuff to Rifoles hotel to be with Monica´s parents. They had extremely kindly offered to put us up in the hotel while we were in Punta Negra. How could we refuse a 5 star hotel with lovely rooms, 4 pools and on the beach front !
Over the next 9 days we spent our time on the beach, either getting a tan or learning to surf, going to shopping malls, eating at good restaurants, playing cards in Monica´s parents room and doing two buggy trips. One night the electricity decided to give in and the whole of Punta Negra descended into darkness. We still managed to find a Pizzeria (Mezzana) with a clay oven and ate by candlelight until power was restored.
We hired a buggy (with driver) to take us up the coast. It was a great day going up and down the dunes and seeing the coast line. Part of the trip involved taking a tiny ferry (more like a floating board where we all sat in the buggy hoping it wouldn´t sink !). During the day we did some rallying on the sand dunes. By the screams of Monica´s mum we think that she enjoyed the trip (although we got the distinct impression that she though the driver was crazy !!!).
The second buggy tour was down the coast to Pipa. We stopped at the world´s largest cashew nut tree (they also eat the cashew fruit here as well). and we spent time in Pipa which was a really nice little town on the beach. There was a beautiful beach just before pipa backed by palm trees which had dolphins swimming around in the bay. We went swimming and at one point there were dolphins swimming around us, even though we didn´t realise it at the time !
Monica´s parents were extremely generous while we were in Punta Negra and we cannot thank them enough. We had a great time with them and for that Tusen Tusen Tusen Takk !!
Lua Cheia Hostel - Friendly place, clean rooms, R$70 for double room with bathroom
Galo do Alto - good food, especially the carbonara !
Taiyo - Japanese, where you cook your own food with sauces. A nice change
Pizzeria Mezzana - lovely pizzas and desserts. Also serves other food.