Ilha Grande, an island 4 hours South of Rio de Janeiro was discovered in 1502. After being the land of pirates and later on, prisoners – the island was a penal colony almost all the 20th century, it is now opened to tourism since 1994.
Now protected as a National park, it is filled with trails you can hike (or get the boat to), waterfalls, and la crème de la crème: Lopes Mendes, one of the most beautiful beach in the world!
Officially declare Ilha Grande one of my favourite place in Brazil, along with Itacaré and Jericoacoara. Was lucky to discover it 3 years ago, and I already know I will be back!