The most beautiful beach in the world

"The most beautiful beach in the world”, they said.

A few hours mini-bus from Rio di Janeiro, the allure of such a bold statement could easily be missed. The island of Ilha Grande (“Big Island”) was our destination. Tropical paradise awaited and we were not disappointed. Bonfires on the beach. Fresh ocean fish with a barbecue grill. Jungle walks. Snorkelling trips.

6 months of reasonably hectic backpacking in South America and we had earned a week of relaxation. We chilled out in hammocks and lay on our sarongs. There truly was not a worry in the world. The beauty of Ilha Grande is there are literally no cars, barely a road for basic transport across the small township.

Boat trip to Ilha Grande

Yacht trip on Ilha Grande with the lads

Lopez Mendez. It echoed in our minds, we needed to go.

Accessible only by boat or a few hours hike across the island, we chose a jungle adventure. A group of unprepared travellers, taking the scenic route in the tropical sun.

The sand a stunning white. The water glistening turquoise blue. Jungle on all sides of the bay. Our minds were blown upon arrival and we simply didn’t want to leave. It wasn’t just the beach itself you see - but the experience. A challenging trek and this reward had been earned. We swam with schools of fish and kicked the football around with random travellers. Then lay about and browned our skin. As the sun started to set, we took the sail boat back to the other side of the island, our home for the week. A memorable day none of us will forget.

“The most beautiful beach in the world”, we said.

Top 3 things to do in Ilha Grande

1. Visit Lopez Mendez beach. Hike there, sail back! A stunning journey and an amazing day out. Take a book to read under the palm trees. A frisbee or a football will top it off.
2. Snorkelling - With lots of different fish in these crystal clear waters that surround the islands, jump off the boat and swim with the fishes. A stupidly great day out.
3. Hire a Canoe - Sun, sea and a bit of island hopping - why not! Canoe around the island and explore new beaches and some of the more untouched places. Make sure you have a bit of fitness on you, especially when the sea gets a bit rough.

Have a cracker!

Lopez Mendiez unspoilt beach

Arrival to Lopez Mendez