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Best Day Trip in Rio - Angras Dos Reis and Isla Grande Brazil

By Edited Jan 31, 2016 1 0
Best Day Trip in Rio - Angras Dos Reis and Isla Grande Brazil
Credit: mjpyro

One of the best day trips you can take if visiting Brazil is to a place called Angra dos Reis located about an hour and a half down the coast from Rio de Janeiro.

This part of Brazil has beautiful weather 365 days of the year and is located by the sea surrounded by the Atlantic Forrest. Angra dos Reis is actually a collection of hundreds of islands surrounded by clear blue seas reminiscent of the water around some of the islands of the Caribbean.

Once there, you can entertain yourself with a variety of activities from boating on speed or pontoon boats, snorkeling or other various water activities.

In this article I would like to give you specifics on what you need to know to plan a day trip, or even make it a weekend stay.

First off, the most important thing to know is how to get there.

Best Way to Get to Angra dos Reis

Ilha Grande
Credit: mjpyro

If you are staying in and around Rio and are thinking of taking a day trip to Angra or the Ihla Grande just off the coast, the best way to get there is by bus or van. You can take a taxi there, but it will be incredibly expensive.

My advice is to walk into any travel agency in the area of Copacabana and Ipanema and ask them about their special day trips. Most of them runs van service to the area daily or several times a week, and you can pay per person.

Each package offers various options, such as snorkeling, boating activities and lunch. Sometime in the late afternoon, the van returns back to the city. That is the best way to do a prearranged day trip.

If you are looking to stay more than a day, or simply want to get there and do your own thing away from a group, there is a bus service named Costa Verde that stops at the entrance to the road to several hotels.  

Where to Stay in Angra dos Reis

Best Day Trip in Rio - Angras Dos Reis and Isla Grande Brazil
Credit: mjpyro

Angra dos Reis Boutique Hotel

A great beach resort located in the midst of nearly everything is called Angra dos Reis Boutique Hotel. This place is not to be confused with the Angra dos Reis Hotel.

Again, if you take the bus to Angra, they will drop you off at the entrance to the hotel. However, if you let them know in advance, they will have someone pick you up at the bus stop.

I have personally stayed here and can attest to the fact that it offers good value for the price. The staff speaks portuguese of course, with limited english.

The scenery is great from nearly every place on the grounds, however, the best room views will cost a bit more of course.

Best Day Trip in Rio - Angras Dos Reis and Isla Grande Brazil

While the hotel is not directly on the beach, it provides access to a private beach which includes access to a marina. The hotel itself is in a gated community with a swimming pool which provides complimentary Brazilian dishes that the staff serves up during the day.

There are plenty of places in and around Rio to lay on a beach, particularly in Ipanema or Copacabana, so my advice is not to place too much emphasis on this aspect when looking for any hotel, or as they call the smaller places in Brazil, pousadas.

This hotel also has a small restaurant with decent food that offers lunch and dinner, but it is pricey.

There are many other places to stay, but I am only focusing on the one that I have personally visited. However, while there, I saw many that I would like to try in the future, the point being, there are many options. If I were looking for a place, I would check the ratings on sites like Trip Advisor or Travelocity because from my experience, they tend to provide a fair assessment of any establishment.

One final note about this place, the wireless internet is free if that is important to you.

Ilha Grande, Brazil

Angras dos Reias Brazil
Credit: mjpyro

Things to do in Angra dos Reis and Ilha Grande

As I said before, there are many water and hiking activities around the area. The town is surrounded by beautiful natural forests and the sea is dotted with many islands, the largest being Ilha Grande, the Big Island, a short boat ride off the cost.

The Ilha Grande is almost pristine and untouched. However, there are places to stay if you would like to spend more time on the island.

The surrounding areas includes plenty of natural waterfalls in the forest, as well as lots of water activities. The water is crystal blue around the islands, so if snorkeling is your thing, or just playing in the water on floats, you will have plenty of options.

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isla Grande
Credit: mjpyro

The hotel I mentioned before offers boat cruises for various durations around the islands. They have a three hour tour and a five hour tour.

Yes, you heard right, a three hour tour, but relax, you will not be out of sight of the coastline so there is no chance that you will get blown off course and marooned on an island.

Whatever tour you choose, the scuba-diving masks and other floatation devices are provided on the boat tours.

Ihla Grande
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Best Day Trip in Rio - Angras Dos Reis and Isla Grande Brazil
A day trip or weekend stay to the town of Angra dos Reis or Ihla Grande is the perfect get away from the rush and touristy areas of Ipanema and Copacabana in Rio de Janeiro.

While these places are somewhat remote, they offer a different experience and are a  much better option if you like to get out on the water. The ocean is this area is much cleaner and clearer than the tourist beaches around Rio.

There are plenty of hotels and pousadas to stay at in the area so do some research on Trip Advisor or any of the travel sites. I have found that the reviews of the places I have stayed on those sites to be right on target in general.

Overall, an Angra day trip is one of most affordable getaways the city has to offer and you will not regret it once you see the crystal blue water.

Isla Grande
Credit: mjpyro


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