We left later than expected, 7 a.m. instead of 6 but we made great timing because the roads were fantastic. Most of the way was farmlands with little to no cell service. We were jamming out to our very eclectic mix of music that we chose for our trip, from 80s hair metal to Disney soundtracks and we were having a great time. We filled up the car twice (which was pretty pricey) and after Porto Alegre we stopped for a quick bite. Up to this point we hadn’t paid any tolls but once we got to the Porto Alegre area the tolls were very pricey. From Porto Alegre until Santana do Livramento there were very few gas stations, so it’s recommended to fill your tank any chance you get.
The landscapes to Livramento were incredible, vast amounts of endless farmlands that made it seem as if humans didn’t exist yet. We rarely encountered people on the roads so it was just smooth sailing on newly paved roads. Once we got to Livramento, which borders Rivera, Uruguay, we noticed how expensive gas was, about R$3.30/L, as opposed to the usual R$2.76-2.98/L.
We drove to where our supposed campsite was on Lago Batua. Driving through suspicious neighborhoods with our Floripa license plate was definitely stranger than driving around with an Uruguayan one. Once we arrived to the lake we saw many townspeople having picnics and parties in the area, though it was around 6 p.m. on a Sunday. We drove around the lake looking for the administration building and once we found it, there was no one there. We then asked a local about camping in the area and he said it wasn’t official but people usually camped on the far side of the lake where there were less people. At this point Dani and I were very tired from traveling all day and just wanted to set up camp and sleep. However, it was very unlikely to happen with so many people partying. The place was crawling with suspicious-looking people and it was still day time so we decided to drive to Quaraí, which we were headed towards in the morning.
It was about 100km away and we were hoping for some better camping grounds or cheap hostels. Driving to Quaraí we encountered no gas stations and few farms. The first gas station we saw was on the outskirts of Quaraí and we stopped to fill up (again), it was R$3.03/L and we didn’t think it would get any better. We asked the attendant about any near-by campgrounds and he didn’t know of any but told us that we could sleep in the grass by the gas station and that we probably wouldn’t find anything better in the city. There were already two guys in a tent and a few truck drivers so we decided to take our chances. The attendants were really nice and we already had food for dinner so we set up camp and started to relax a bit. It was really hot and the tent made it worse but we managed to sleep with no problems and it even cooled down at night. It was definitely an adventure but overall it was fun and an interesting experience and, best of all, it was free! ;)
- Left Floripa @ 7AM
- Arrived @ 8PM in Quaraí
- R$115 - Gas [R$2.76/L]
- R$4.70 - Toll (Osorio - Porto Alegre)
- R$9.30 - Toll (Eldorado do Sul)
- R$7 - Toll (BR-290)
- R$107 - Gas [R$2.98/L]
- R$7 - Toll (Pantano Grande)
- R$126 - Gas [R$2.86/L]
- R$9 - Juice
- Total = R$385