When planning a vacation or solo trip to Brazil, most people head straight to Rio de Janeiro or Sao Paulo.
However, if you’re looking for a true Brazilian paradise, you should think about making a stop in Ilha Grande.
From Angra, you can take a 30-minute boat ride to Abraao Village on the island, which embodies the true definition of a surf town.
To make your journey less confusing and more comfortable than taking public transportation, you can book the transfer through Green Toad Bus, who will pick you up at your accommodation in an air-conditioned bus and bring you right to the docks where you will meet your ferry.
Ilha Grande is filled with hostels, pousadas, restaurants serving local foods, and surf shops. Palm trees, lagoons, jungles, and beaches create the landscape.
While full of tourists, it doesn’t give you the irritable feeling you get in a big city. In fact, you’ll have fun meeting other travelers and sharing conversations over fresh seafood dishes and strong caprihinas.
I stayed at the Biergarten Hostel, which I highly recommend. The owner, Vitor, is really friendly and accommodating, and the rooms are spacious, clean, and air-conditioned.
Lockers, towels, linens, internet, WiFi, and breakfast are included, and the hostel has a very good and inexpensive restaurant/bar onsite where you can get caipirinhas and buffet-style meals for cheap.
Beans, chicken, beef, salads, rice dishes, noodles, pasta, pies, crab au gratin, shrimp, lobster, and an array of other foods are included in the rotating menu.
During the day, there are various options for things to do. If you’re feeling a little lazy, head to the nearest beach, sunbathe, or partake in water sports.
For those with a bit more energy, there are different hikes you can do to other, more beautiful beaches. I would suggest hiking to Cachoeira da Feiticiera, which allows you to see aqueduct ruins, natural pools, and waterfalls. You continue to follow the trail to the beach, where you can either take a ferry back or hike.
The hike is pretty intense, with a lot of uphill climbing, uneven terrain, and lush jungle. Roundtrip it took my group about 3.5 hours to leave and return to the hostel, with a stop for some soccer at the beach.
If you have a few days to spend in Ilha Grande, you can take a boat trip to eight hidden beaches, which allows you to see many landscapes many people don’t get the chance to.
This post was made possible by Green Toad Bus
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