Ilha Grande is 120 miles south of Rio de Janeiro. It is just 40 miles north of Parati, where we were yesterday. We sailed out into the Atlantic and made a big box to fill the time. According to information provided to us, the island boasts over 200 beaches. The island is in pristine condition due to its unusual history. First it was a pirates’ lair, then a leper colony and, finally, a prison for some of Brazil’s most violent and deranged criminals. All that remains of those days are some half buried stone foundations, but the island’s unsavory reputation kept developers at bay for a long time and Brazil made most of the island a national Park. Consequently, beautiful tropical beaches and virgin Atlantic rain forest abound and there are only a few settlements on the island .
The island appears to be very rugged and the hillsides are covered in lush forests. It is bright and sunny when we arrive and we can see the small village of Vila do Abraao just across the bay. It was a sleepy fishing village until 30 years ago. Despite all the new stores and bars,
We are prepared for a swim and have some Brazilian currency just in case. We explore a block or two back from the beach promenade on several streets and find two pins for Jack’s collection as well as a canvass sun hat for Carolyn. Dick finds a T-shirt with dive information for the area but it comes only in black so he passes.
We walk back along the beachfront looking at houses (Everyone has a shower in the front yard!), signs, people and stuff.
Ray hashis nice Sunday service at 5:15PM then we stay in the Horizon Lounge for drinks, but about 6PM the Bingo lady shows up, they really need to rethink having bingo in the bar at that time of day! We move out on the open deck off the Lounge for awhile then go to our travel group’s Farwel party for this segment. It is held in the Star’s Lounge this time...a nice place for the private parties. On to dinner and bed...we are really tired after two days in the heat.