This natural-cultural landscape encompasses the historic centre of Paraty, one of Brazil's best-preserved coastal towns, four Brazilian Atlantic Forest protected natural areas, one of the world’s five key biodiversity hotspots, as well as part of the Serra da Bocaina mountain range and the Atlantic coastal region. Serra do Mar and Ilha Grande Bay is home to an impressive diversity of animal species, some of which are threatened, such as the jaguar (Panthera onca), the white-lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) and several primate species, including the Southern Muriqui (Brachyteles arachnoides), which are emblematic of the property. In the late 17th century, Paraty was the end-point of the Caminho do Ouro(Gold Route), along which gold was shipped to Europe. Its port also served as an entry point for tools and African slaves, sent to work in the mines. A defence system was built to protect the wealth of the port and the town. The historic centre of Paraty has retained its 18th century plan and much of its colonial architecture dating from the 18th and early 19th centuries.