You’ve just arrived at Ilha Grande and are all set to discover the island? This hike is perfect for your first day in Vila de Abraão! The hike is short, very easy and gives you a great impression of the island’s diverse attractions. In only 15 minutes you’ll see a natural swimming pool, an acqueduct, an isolation hospital (Lazareto) and the famous Black Beach.
|Duration: 15-20 minutes round trip.Difficulty: Very easy
Length: about 2km
When to hike: All year
What to bring: Havaianas or trainers, mosquito repellent. Sunscreen, beachwear, towel or canga, snacks and water if you plan to stay at Praia Preta/Black Beach.
How to get to the Circuito de Abraão Hike
As the name suggests, Circuito de Abraão, or “Abraham’s Circuit” in English, is a round trip and its starting point is located at only 5-10 minutes walking distance from the pier of Vila de Abraão.
If you’re facing the pier, you have to go to the left and follow the dirt road along the water until you reach a gate which welcomes you to the “Parque Estadual de Ilha Grande”. Right after the gate there’s a junction with an information sign showing the route of the Circuito de Abraão Hike. As the hike is a round trip, you can either continue straight or take the path up to your left. However, it makes most sense to go up left, this way you’ll leave the Praia Preta, “Black Beach” in English, for last and spend the rest of the day here.
Taking the path to your left you’ll have to go uphill for a few minutes. Shortly after the start you’ll see some steps leading up to a rock on your right. From the rock you have a beautiful view over the jungle, so have a go at it and enjoy the countless shades of green that make Ilha Grande famous. In the middle of this green ocean you’ll also be able to spot the acqueduct.
Continue the main path for just another minute and you’ll reach a small natural pool. If you’re in for a little refreshment, do take a bath in this small water basin, it’s perfectly fine to take a swim here. However, in another 5 minutes you’ll be at the “Black Beach” so you might want to wait a bit longer. To cross the water basin you have to climb over some rocks, but it’s pretty easy and doesn’t require any special effort. Once you’re on the other side, you’ll already see the acqueduct, an impressive construction from the late 19th century that was built to transport water to the “Lazareto”, the isolation hospital.
Take the path to your right just in front of the acqueduct to finish you round trip and get back to the beach side. After a couple of hundred meters you’ll reach a crossing where you have to go to the right again and you’ll come to the Lazareto on you left hand side. There’s not much left to see of the isolation hospital, just a few ruins that look like caves.
Follow the path along the Lazareto and you’ll get straight to the Black Beach. The beach is called black beach because it has black sand. However, don’t be surprised to see only little black and a lot of white, there’s not that much black sand as you might expect. The beach is perfect for little children, too because there’s a natural pool where children can play and a small creek that connects the natural pool to the ocean.
To go back to the village you just need cross the small creek and you’ll see some steps leading up to the main path. Continue your walk to the left and follow the path along the coast. You’ll pass the starting point of the Circuito de Abraão hike after a couple of hundred meters and reach the village in 5-10 minutes.