The village of Paraty was founded in 1597. At that time, the principal activity was the cultivation of sugar cane and the flow of coffee production from the Paraíba valley. After a period of decline and isolation, a modest uptick occurred late in the 19th century with the production of cachaça, a sugarcane spirit best known today as the main ingredient for Brazil's world famous cocktail, the caipirinha. Afterwards, Paraty remained remote and forgotten until a paved road was built from Rio de Janeiro to the state of São Paulo, in the 1970s. The city then began a new cycle of activity and transformation , becoming integrated into the tourist route due to the rediscovery of its magnificent scenery and unique enchanting preserved historic center.