Monday, May 1, 2017


It is very difficult for me to put so much happiness in words when I think about Ilha Grande. stop thinking about and JUST COME!!! I know the way to many paradises close to Rio and this island is my option number one!!!

Ideally, we have to spend at least one night there, but I am not that selfish so I can make this paradise for just one day...and we can do a lot of places. 

Thanks to my friend and TV Reporter Stefani Gamboa from Washington DC we had a glorious day, we rent a speed boat and could explore the hidden places of the islands like avid pirates and conquerors. 

This is always the result of our day in Ilha Grande, endless smiles, laughs and gorgeous pictures. Tropical beaches, amazing inlets where we can see Brazil exactly like the Portuguese saw our Nation 500 years ago. Lovely sparkling emerald waters, absurdly stunning Nature that will make you be sure that you are in a paradise far away from the crazy big cities. 

You have a life in New York??? I know, it is a fascinating city but some days in Ilha Grande will make you feel so much better that you will be back to your home with a different and "soft" mood. If we, who live in Rio, and we also have a wonderful city, we love going to Ilha Grande on the weekends, and our lives get sooooooo much easier after SOME HOURS IN THIS BLESSED ISLAND CALLED ILHA GRANDE. 

Getting there is easy but it will demand a little sacrifice: WAKING UP VERY EARLY, we have to leave here about 6:00 am to take the speed boat at 8:00 am in a village called CONCEIÇÃO DO JACAREI. I have made a little video showing the kind of transportation we take, and it takes only 20 minutes to cross, we get to the island before 9:00 am and we finish our activities by 6:00 pm or 7:00 pm. And we get back to Rio always after 9:00 pm. You will be tired in the end but think about that your heart will have different beats forever.

Well, now it is your turn to write to me and we can arrange such a different day in your trip to Rio de Janeiro. But think about to spend about 4 or 5 days so we will have time to discover the secrets of Rio that only curious and passionate locals have. Yes, I am a registered tour guide, but I really do not like to be called or considered a tour guide, I am your new friend in Rio who will be honored to have your presence here! I just want to make my land easier for you. It is your chance to be a traveler in Rio, not a single tourist. I am here to show you the SOUL of Rio. 

I am proud to have travel partners all over the World, so they will certainly recommend the best way to contact me, but you can also write to me directly, just drop me a line to or add me on WhatsApp which is +5521 98018 0510

Rafael Torres Lopes
Tour Guide and Travel Planner

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


Cariocas are the name given to the natives of Rio, and Irish, you know what Irish means. 

The world CARIOCA was invented by the indigenous people that the Portuguese navigators found here in the 1500s. The funniest thing is that the type of housing called more attention than the white color of their skin (I am talking about the Portuguese), so they named:


So literally they meant: THE FOLKS OF THE WHITE HOUSE. 

And IRISH, you know what Irish means...a native from the green and happy Ireland.

All this explanation to explain that for me CARIOCA and IRISH have different meanings...they both means OPEN SPIRIT, BIG LAUGHS, AND DEEP FRIENDSHIP

And my Irish friends Sarah and Catherine came...and I had the honor to show the best of Rio in one day. And we focused on NITEROI most of the time.

What a gorgeous place Niteroi is always a great surprise for any traveler to find so many hidden places. Spots that a tourist will never find, you should always have someone from the area to take you to these unique beautiful places. Beaches, hills and islands. 

Never ignore NITEROI in any trip to Rio, that is my suggestion.

So wonderful to share this amazing view of Rio from Niteroi, Parque da Cidade is a must see place and the reactions when my guests see this spectacle of Nature sometimes is more interesting than the place itself.

Thanks Girls for all your trust and friendship.

Rafael Torres Lopes
Tour Guide and Travel Planner

Monday, April 17, 2017


If you love outdoor activities, nature, and love to spend part of your time visiting amazing Earth Sanctuaries, then Brazil is a perfect country for you. The Twenty-eight States for you to choose and have the best time of your life! 

This is why, I feel so blessed to be Brazilian, this is also how you can be sure that I am very passionate about this incredible labor to make Rio easy and unique for you!

And you do not need to go far to feel how the Portuguese felt when they came to Rio about 500 years ago, close to your place you can find many small paradises and one of them is BIG, its name says so...ILHA GRANDE.

PARADISE OF WATERS...salt and fresh...lots of water to REFRESH YOUR SOUL

Ilha Grande has 101 beaches, it is always better to spend at least one night, but we can easily spend the whole day there and come back to Rio, but it demands some sacrifice, we have to leave Rio before 7:00 am and travel by car for about 2 hours and then a speed boat that takes 20 minutes to cross, and getting back at 6:30 pm, plus two hours to arrive in Rio

Secluded beaches, amazing forests, spring waters and great food, this will be a perfect day doing something different in your stay in Rio. Ilha Grande is a lovely secret that I am ready to show you. 

The island is waiting for you, such a nature treasure where you can find extremely amazing food such as Marola where you can have the best of the local Brazilian cuisine in front of a paradise, Praia do Pouso; it is a floating restaurant not so far from the main village!

A big happiness that I have is no doubt my work, the smiles I see from my friends when I take them to Ilha Grande, it can be perfectly done in one day, two days, if you have time available during your trip to Rio. Ilha Grande is a wonderful option and you can count on me.

Tour Guide and Travel Planner