Published: March 8th 2011February 28th 2011
Moving on from Paraty, we knew Ilha grande had no ATMs or vehicles so stocked up on cash and was ready to find our hostel on foot (which we've always done so far but now we had no choice). Becoming wiser tourists we refused the more expensive boat that swore it would take less time and give us a discount but only once we were on the boat. (Not going to fall for that one mate!) We found the ticket office for the ferry for 6.50real (about £3) and sent our personal interpreter Jane off to purchase them.
We quickly learnt as we arrived on the island that the only activity to do was walking treks/trails. So the next day we woke up early and started the trek to lopes Mendez, a beach that was unreachable by boat and therefore is completely uninhabited. No toilets, shops etc; though there were a few vendors working from a cool box.
The trail guide said the walk was medium and the hostel manager said although hilly it could be done in flip flops (Jane would strongly argue different after her experience). I would be intrigued to know what they call difficult and wonder where they buy their footwear... It took around three hours including a lunch break and it included mountainous hills in jungle surroundings.
There were times of uncertainty (Lucille: "if I die here just roll me to the side and let the monkeys have me") but we made it and overall was a great trek and worth the walk. Lopes Mendez was a long White sandy beach with clear blue sea. With a bit of a nap and play in the rock pools we decided to take a boat from a nearby beach back instead of brave the walk again in the dark.
Later we were able to watch the England rugby match on the tv at the hostel and chilled with a well deserved beer.
On the island we found a great buffet restaurant where you are charged by the weight of the plate. It suited us all and we became quite curious about how much we each spent (Jane the cheapest, Sheryl the most). There was an ice cream sundae vendor of same weight pricing, again I (Sheryl) spent the most and thought it was worth every penny :)
On the last night we headed to the bars on the beach with some friends we made from the hostel. It was very pleasant though was surprised to be moved around 10.30 so settled with a few beers at the hostel.