Ilha Grande (Big Island) is an ecologically preserved island with 106 sandy beaches. It is a 2.5 hour drive south of Rio de Janeiro and a short boat trip from mainland. The island is preserved as a national park and contains a vast expanse of Atlantic rainforest, clear blue-green waters, countless endangered species of flora and fauna and a vast resources of fresh water.
How to get here: is easily accessible through three different ports on the Rio-Santos BR101: Angra dos Reis, Mangaratiba and Conceição de Jacareí. Regular diale boats cross from each port to the island. The duration of the crossing varies from 30 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minutes, depending on the boat and the port. Please check timetables in advance.
Must visit: Lagoa Azul, Lopes Mendes Beach (one of the world's top 10 beaches) and Saco do Céu.