Tuesday, June 25, 2013


My thanks go to Nancy, my dear friend in California (who is now wondering around WITH STYLE somewhere in Europe) who suggested my super new friend Nina who trusted her clan in their first adventure in Brazil. I got the challenge and now I am a member of a very funny family in Baltimore...Once in my land, you are always part of it so let's explore all the place...And I simply decided that they would see everything...And we closed our BRAZILIAN BOOK OF ADVENTURES in a wonderful destination: THE MAGNIFICENT ILHA GRANDE....

And there we went...Always with the shining company of MRS. COLORADO, Nina and her brothers John and Charlie. and the great friends of mine Mama Tracy and PAPA ADVENTURE, Peter...Simply wonderful folks.

It is possible to spend just one day in the island...and we did the best way...we rent a speed boat, prices varies between 300 USD and 400 USD, it takes a lot of negotiation, but the result is always amazing. We could explore unique points of the island, and I choose the main points of Ilha Grande to provide a super local experience in this Paradise. We did some snorkel in the Blue Lagoon, Green Lagoon, we saw the beach of Arepeba and we had a perfect lunch in a authentic restaurant in the village of Saco do Céu.

The day was so complete and so unique, lots of laughs, lots of joy and we simply had a fantastic time!!!

We had a glorious lunch...I was thinking about a very special place that much more than eating, it could be a life experience. I have been to this restaurant four times and I love the village where it is is a place where time has no rush. The name has everything to do with the calm and quietness of the village...It is called REFUGIO (literally SHELTER). We saw the houses, we had fun with the farm animals...such as geese (which is also a very naughty "brazilian expression" - let me know if you want me to tell you the meaning...but in portuguese it is AFOGAR O GANSO....John and the folks know the meaning....

Anyway...Peter, Tracy, John, Charlie and Nina...the first one who contacted me...thank you Nina. 

The menu was diverse, I had to order the best of the Caiçara Food...shrimps from the lagoons; and local our case we had SHARKS FILLET; and the famous BOBÓ DE CAMARÃO...a cream made with Yuca, brazilian seasonings and generous piece of shrimps; and I also ordered a homemade risotto and some exquisite brazilian sodas like Guaraná.

After our super big lunch we had a well deserved lunch and we appreciated the environment which is super lush and full of birds.

Nothing would be possible without Peter's support!!! Great friend, all fed with World Culture and great sense of humor...When you come to the island, I highly suggest you to rent a boat, I can take care of all the details. Thanks to the boat and our Captain Aluizio. Mama Tracy was the face of happiness during our day!!! Thank you, my dear Family for all the friendship and all the friendship!

Ilha Grande can be visited in one day, it will give you an idea of one of the most beautiful places in Brazil; but two days would be incredible and I would spend the whole week there. You should always add Ilha Grande in your itinerary. I will be more than happier to assist you. 

Rafael Torres Lopes
Tour Guide and Travel Planner

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