Fazenda Sao Fransisco in the Brazilian countryside

An old Brazilian fazenda (or ranch) may wery well be as close as you can get to the old wild west, particularly if you visit an old fashioned one like Fazenda Sao Fransisco, where the old atmosphere has been preserved. With only 6 guestrooms and the owner present, it is as visiting the family at the fazenda, not as staying in a hotel. Many fazendas have been converted into hotels and inns with all facilities, but Fazenda Sao Fransisco is not one of those tourist traps. At the time of writing this, I am still living in Brazil, and plan more visits here, hence more pictures are likely to appear here later.

Facenda Sao Fransisco

The first look you get at the manor house built in 1813 when you arrive. Living rooms and bedrooms are all on the 2nd floor. The ground floor was used for housing the slaves in the old days, but today the owners keep a small collection of old items here, and sell some local products on request. The stables for the horses are to the left outside the picture. In the morning, the roosters will make sure you get up early.

Tucan and main entrance

The main entrance take you directly into the living room. The tucan in front is wild, but likes it around the fazenda. It will certainly make sure it gets your attention by pulling your shoestrings or some other stunt. I have 100s of pictures of it, mostly closeups.

Thomas on horse 1st time

My 1st time on a horse, and the horse seems to sense it, being somwhat sceptical about what will happen. However, after a few hours in the saddle I mastered both trotting and galloping, and the horse's ears where pointing forward. Most horses seem to have a sense of your abilities, and are very reluctant to go faster if you don't feel confident. Each horse certainly has it's own individual character, and I got some fauvorites here.

Hills around Facenda Sao Fransisco

The Fazenda seen from the hills behind it. The beautiful cultivated landscape you see here is where you go horseback-riding. Further back, out of sight is a large lake. Excellent for a swim after a ride.

1800s style dining room

The dining room at Fazenda Sao Fransisco. Most of the furniture is from the mid 1800's. I am not fully able to give a good description of the atmosphere during a dinner in this room will all gusts set around the same table. It certainly is a good one. The food is excellent and based on local products and cooking traditions. Caipirinha made from the Fazenda's own Cassasha (a liqueur) is also served. The owner is also a keen collector of art, and used to run an art gallery, so the house is filled with paintings in all rooms.

One of many strange fruits

At the Fazenda, a large number of exotic fruits are grown, including more than 15 types of oranges. The one above has a very strong red color, and is excellent for dyeing fabrics and coloring food. You can also eat it. A few coffee plants were also kept, but the time of large scale coffee production is history in this area. The Fazenda has it's own web-site at www.fazendasaofrancisco.com.br. The site is in Portuguese, but the owners speak English.

(c) Thomas Høven 2004