Ilha Grande has had a colorful history. Once a penal colony for Brazil’s most dangerous criminals and before that a leper colony, this tropical oasis, translates in English as “The Big Island,” and is now one of Rio de Janeiro’s most popular weekend getaway spots. With city dwellers and foreigners alike coming to its shores to escape the hustle and bustle of the big city. Ilha Grande is known for its unspoiled character, as it has remained mostly untouched by development or the influx of big name brands. Most of the businesses, lodgings, and attractions are run by native families, helping to preserve Ilha Grande’s island community and low-key atmosphere. The island benefits from white sandy beaches, crystal clear blue seas and countless coconut trees that are dotted throughout Ilha Grande’s lush green hillsides and beachfront.
Our Ilha Grande Experts Recommend: