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Recent Guide Reviews
Thanks to Francisco's amazing knowledge and familiarity with Rio, we feel we 'did' Rio in 24 hours! Francisco took us to all the hidden (and not ... MoreReview for Francisco Silveira Pinto, Tour guide in Ilha Grande, Brazil
We are glad that we have hired Marcelo as our guide. First, our tour proposal is quite challenging. We want our guide to take us to favela Santa ... MoreReview for Marcelo Locke, Tour guide in Ilha Grande, Brazil
I have used Raul Pessoa on several occasions when visiting Brazil, both for personal travel and also for business travel. He has provided me with ... MoreReview for Raul Pessoa, Tour guide in Ilha Grande, Brazil
About Ilha Grande
Framed by the rugged coastline of Rio de Janeiro State and encompassed by the tropical swells of the Atlantic Ocean, Ilha Grande rises from the sea in a series of verdant ridges clad entirely in dense thickets of primeval rainforest. It was once home to one of Brazil’s most infamous prisons, and before that played host to swashbuckling pirates and leprosy sufferers respectively. This curious and shady past has in turn translated into a welcomingly slow and unobtrusive onset of mass modern tourism, hence keeping the island’s pristine beauty more or less undisturbed.
Indeed, even amidst the tight-knit streets of laid-back Vila do Abraao, the only major settlement here, there are no cars to be found, and locals still gather to tête-à-tête and savour fish stews around the docks in the early evening. However, Ilha Grande’s real draw has to be in its backcountry, which extends through some of the most fascinating protected rainforest in all of Brazil, the soaring peaks of Pico do Papagaio and paradisal beaches like the ones at Lopes Mendes, Parnaioca and Praia do Aventureiro.