It is one of the most famous beaches on the Brazilian coast, especially among the surfing community. Its location 2.5km ocean beach of white sand, with waves have made it a favorite among Cariocas surfing. Today it's a deserted beach with no buildings, and there's only food and beverage service during summer. Islanders come with their beach coolers loaded with soft drinks, beer and food to sell to surfers and swimmers. Swimming can be a bit dangerous because the currents are very strong , but it's shallow enough that if you're cautious if you want to cure a hangover. It's reached by a path from Abrao. You can ride a bike, about 8km, or go by boat.
To get to Ilha Grande you have to take a boat in Angra dos Reis, and this allows you to reach Abrao, the capital of the island, giving us an idea of what that is truly undeveloped tourism, as it consists of a few streets, many of them unpaved, and most lodges are scattered along the beach or in the hills. I stayed at the HI hostel on the island, on the mountainside, but it was only a 5 minute walk from the village, very nice with an amazing view, not to mention the "café da Manha". The summer is wonderful and filled with locals, so I recommend visiting between March and November, as it is much quieter and the prices are much, much lower. My trip was in the middle of April and even though it is considered to be their winter, the temperature was great.
Due to fishing that has made it the second largest economy after Abrao, Ilha Grande, it is one of the most populous cities. When we arrived, people looked at us questioningly and seemed very unfriendly, which is something rather strange in Brazil. This city's population belongs to the Evangelical community and they are quite reluctant to accept tourists because they believe that tourists bring bad things to the city. It is very difficult to make friends there if you are not evangelical. The owner of the inn where we were stayed had been living for 5 years in the city and didn't know many locals. Proveta has had electricity since 2002, and with it have come some advances that evangelists consider evil, such as television. The beach is wonderful, semicircular, and several palm trees hang like a swing over the water.
There are two options to get to this beach: by boat or across all Ilha Grande from Vila do Abraão through a path. It's not as well-known as other beaches like Lopes Mendes (perhaps because of its inaccessibility), Dois Rios has clean water, it's quiet and there are less people in the water. Nearby you can visit the old prison, with two exhibits, one devoted to the prison and the other is objects made from recycled materials.
The last day of my ten day trip to Ilha Grande was quiet, enjoying the beaches and Pouso Palmas, which are on the way to Lopes Mendes from Abrao. The beaches that make up the bay are Grande de Palmas, Mangues, Pouso, Aroeira, Recife and Isla de Palma. In Las Palmas they still have the remains of cannons and ruins of the Ilha Grande era which was one of the strategic defense points of Rio de Janeiro. It was a pretty important town, but today it's a small settlement where they don't even have electricity. Palmas Beach has a campground that is very popular in the summer and small stores that sell drinks and sandwiches. Most of the inhabitants are fishermen, but there are some inns for visitors.
We arrived at Parnaioca after walking down the Praia do Demo, named for the slippery rocks where if you slip you go "straight to hell", then we came to the do Sul and Leste beaches, which are separated by a rocky islet and a lagoon. It's an absolutely fascinating landscape with 4 km of white sand with extremely restricted beach access due to the biological reserve rules. The beach is 1 km long but the sand isn't much compared to the other beaches we passed. You can stay in a campsite near the gorgeous Parnaioca river. There are remains of old plantations where slaves worked the cassava and coffee fields. Today not many people live here.
Ilha Grande has no roads or motor vehicles, so the only way to get around the island is by foot, mountain bike, or boat. There's a lot of humidity so you should drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. The water of the island in generally good, but since there are pets and livestock it's a good idea to boil or treat it. The Bay and Bananal lookout point are about 15 km from Abrao, and were the first legs of my trek around the island. It couldn't have been a better choice because we took a fantastic swim in the bay and watched the spectacular sunset. En route we passed some beautiful beaches, such as the inlet of the stars, Feiticeira, Saco do Ceu, parish of Santana. It is best to camp because there are only a few lodges on the way back to the island, but sometimes we do stay in family homes. You can also buy food at grocery stores in the small towns or directly from the peasants.
Acaia is a very special place, a flooded cave which is accessible through a small crack in the rocks, due to high humidity you need to be very careful when you go down and you have to crawl as the space is less than a meter tall. Not a place for the claustrophobic, but the reward is that water is phosphorescent thanks to the light from the underwater access. Input functions as a lung when the sea is moved, the waves enter the cave and the air is pushed out as a small canyon entrance slit. The process is reversed when the tide goes out, there's a water vacuum effect within the cave, even though there was not sun when I visited it was spectacular. The sea shines with amazing turquoise color, and the sound of the waves envelope you. It's pity that we couldn't take the good camera down because water condensation and the moisture would jeopardize it. We spent a long time inside the cave, wearing a headlamp and that helped us to suffer from claustrophobia, then we approached the of the cave, it was a very rocky area.