We have already mentioned before that a trip to Curitiba is like to visit several parts of the world. Japan Square, German Woods, Pope´s Woods, Ukranian Memorial… all these places can make you travel without leaving Curitiba. But very close to the city it is possible to find nice places that are not so famous, but are equally nice. We have already told about the Witmarsum settlement, and now we want to present you another great tour: the Dutch Settlements, in the middle of the beautiful landscapes of Campos Gerais.
➔ We will tell you a little bit about this tour, but what about to see everything with your own eyes? You can book the tour to the Dutch Settlements that depart every Sunday or combine it with a visit to Vila Velha. A very nice and different tour to include in your travel plans to Curitiba!
The settlement Castrolanda is located in Castro, in Paraná Estate. Its original area was 5,000 hectars and was the new home for Dutch immigrants that left Europe after the World War II. They arrived 1951 and were astonished about the size of the fields, totally different of what they had in Holland. Uniting the names Castro and Holland, the settlement started and the cooperative Castrolanda was founded.
► With the arrival of the Dutch families, agricultural infrastructure was brought. Exhibition at the Immigration Memorial.
But not everything was easy at the beginning. The pioneers had much work here and had to adapt to Brasil, with unknown cattle deseases and lack of technical assistance. But as they were allowed to bring their own equipment, they could establish a very successful dairy industry and developed quickly.
Milk Capital City
At present days, Castrolanda cooperative is dedicated to expand business and achieve more space among the greatest cooperatives in Brazil. Their development is remarkable! Castro is known as the Milk Capital City due to the high productivity and quality reached here. Every year the event Agroleite is held here and presents exhibitions and new techniques to improve the milk production. It is the most complete event in the area in Brazil and a great opportunity for networking. 2016 the event will happen from 18th to 22nd October.
► Entrance of “Cidade do Leite” – Milk City.
► Agroleite is one of the most important events of this area.
The cooperative built 1991 the Immigrant Museum that shows the history of the pioneer families who arrived here. The museum is located in an old house in European style. The furniture and objects were donated by the local families. A new museum is being built to have more space for exhibition. We will tell more when it is ready!
De Immigrant: one of the greatest windmills outside the Netherlands
In Castrolanda you will visit the windmill De Immigrant – the immigrant – inspired by the Woldzigt, located in Dentre, the hometown of many of the immigrants. The wings of the windmill are 26m long and its height is 35m. The windmill itself is a great attraction and inside you will visit the Dutch Immigration Memorial, in honor to the people who arrived here in the 1950´s. The museum is simply known as “windmill” and was opened 2001, when the settlement completeted its 50 first years of existence. The windmills are the symbol for Holland and also for the cooperative.
► Windmill De Immigrant in Castrolanda – it is also the Dutch Immigration Memorial.
Inside the memorial, a trip back in former times. Visitors can walk up 4 floors and have the chance to know more about the immigration, the history of the settlement and of the cooperative and enjoy the local built – curiosly, it is completely made of wood, without nails! The memorial has also a library and a typical Dutch pub. There is a souvenir shop! The Memorial is open from Friday to Sunday from 2pm to 6pm. Other days are subject to confirmation for groups of minimum 10 persons. For lunch or a coffee, you can make a stop in the local restaurant – Café de Molen, a rustic place that serves regular meals, nothing fancy.
► Music instrument called Notenkraker.
► Typical Dutch wooden shoes for pictures!
Biggest history open air museum in Brazil
When you arrive in Carambeí, you will have some more history about the Dutch immigration. Here, everything looks very real! You will visit the biggest history open air museum in Brazil spread over 100,000 sqm. In the middle of beautiful gardens you will find constructions like the ones from 1930´s to 1950´s. Visitors can imagine vividly how things where in the past. The memorial was created to preserve the memory of the pioneers, that left many benefits for the local community.
► Right at the entrance you will cross a bridge brought from Holland!
The bulding from 1946 hosted the first part of the museum and is named “Casa da Memória” – opened 2001. In 2011 the new part was ready: the historical village, true reproduction of the former houses in a 60% escale. Houses, train station, school, dairy industry, slaughter house, church and even the cemetery can be visited. All houses have objects from the past and remind the first years of the settlement. The “Parque das Águas” is the newest part of the museum and was opened 2015. It was inspired by the Zaanse Schanans, an environmental park in Holland.
Curiosity! Carambeí was the home of the first cooperative in Brazil, presently known as Batavo!
► Architecture and much culture!
An interesting immersion in the local history and a great opportunity to see the local landscapes! A tour close to Curitiba for locals and tourists to experience the region from a different perspective, away from the beaten tracks. Do not forget your camera – the place is great for pictures!! There is also a souvenir shop with nice stuff to take home. Carambeí Historical Park opens from Tuesday to Sunday from 11am to 6pm. At the memorial house the entrance is free. The entrance fee for the other areas costs R$ 15 per person. Children from 7 to 12 years old, students, teachers and blood donors pay half. Children up to 6 years old and older than 60 years old are free.
► What about to take a souvenir home?
Pies and more pies at Frederica’s!
This tip is a very special one – and quite delicious!! For the pies lovers, Frederica´s Koffiehuis is a mandatory stop. Located at Carambeí, you will find here sweet and savory pies in a very nice ambiance. During weekends, live music. From Wednesday to Friday, special offers for craft beer and appetizers in the evening. It opens from Wednesday to Friday from 2pm to 9pm and weekends from 2pm to 8pm. Adress: Avenida dos Pioneiros, 1010 – Carambeí – (42) 3231-4401.