The Costa Verde ('Green Coast') is a 175-mile stretch of beautiful sandy beaches and lush inland forests between the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. The many bays and coves with their crystal clear water offer opportunities for a range of watersports, including snorkelling and diving. Angra dos Reis ('King's Cove') is one of the finest beaches along this coastline, but there are many others waiting to be explored.
A boat cruise is a great way to appreciate the beauty of the region, with views from the ocean to the forest and mountains beyond.The forest offers great walking and hiking opportunities, with stunning views and plentiful waterfalls. There are traditional fishing villages all along the coast and the region also includes the pretty colonial town of Paraty, a UNESCO world heritage site.
Ilha Grande is one the many islands lying along the Costa Verde and is a protected area.. It is covered in lush green forest, coastal vegetation and mangrove swamps and has several sandy beaches. It is largely undeveloped and has no cars, so the pace of life is slow and relaxed.
It is a part of Brazil's Atlantic rainforest, one of the most diverse ecosytems in the world and is home to many endangered species such as the brown howler monkey, the maned sloth and the red-browed Amazon parrot. As well as water based activities, there are some 90 miles of walking trails linking the coastal villages, hamlets, mountain peaks, waterfalls and beaches, an ideal way to explore the island.
Paraty was founded by Portuguese colonisers in 1667 and still has a great many beautiful colonial buildings today, including churches and impressive forts. The town in situated on the Bay of Ilha Grande on the Costa Verde, the lush green corridor that lines the coastline of the state of Rio de Janeiro.
The town was an important export centre for gold, and today, it is a popular tourist centre. Visitors come to stroll through the narrow cobblestone streets of the old town and enjoy the fine coastal views. Inland are forests, mountains and waterfalls and there are many parks and nature reserves in the area. Paraty is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Asalem is an exclusive property with just four rooms enjoying a peaceful location on beautiful Ilha Grande.
A delightful guest house with characterful rooms and a lovely courtyard situated in the heart of Paraty's historic centre.
Quirky 6 room pousada in Paraty's historic centre.
Lovely 26 room pousada located in the heart of Paraty's historic centre.
Time: GMT -3 hours
Most flights go to Sao Paulo but some airlines have direct flights to Rio de Janeiro, and to North-eastern Brazil. British Airways and TAM have direct flights from London and many European carriers also offer flights to Brazil.
Language: Portuguese is the official language. Spanish and English are understood quite widely.
Not required for British nationals.
There are no compulsory vaccinations, except yellow fever if you are coming from an infected area. Malaria prophylactics are recommended in the rainforest.