Ilha de Cotijuba, one of the most beautiful islands in Belém do Pará.

On the first day of the year I saw Raquel, a friend of mine that I met at a hostel. I talked about this when I was talking about Praia do Amor, this time we went to the Ilha de Cotijuba, one of the islands of Belém do Pará and again we had trouble.

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The Islands in Belém do Pará

Belém do Pará is surrounded by islands, pieces of land in the middle of rivers and bays. 

Those Islands ended up forming river beaches, some of them really beautiful.

The Ilha do Combú (free traduction – Combu Island)

A lot of islands are known for having a lot of regional dishes, such as Ilha do Combú, where I went with a friend of a friend of mine and his friends.

In Combú, we ate huge and tasty fish. Besides that, we also had a long walk to see a little more of the nature of the place and the árvore secular (secular tree) which is a tourist point in the Ilha do Combú.

There are a lot of lands surrounded by water in the capital of Pará.

Only in the administrative jurisdictions of Belém there are 42 islands integrating the archipelago.

Besides what I said above and what I will say below, some of the islands nearest of the city are:

  • Ilha das Laranjeiras
  • Ilha das Onças
  • Ilha do Forte da Barra
  • Ilha Jararaquinha
  • Ilha Mirim
  • And so on

>>You will like to read: The 5 best fishes of Pará – Gastronomy of Amazonas

I also went to Ilha de Cotijuba

As I said before, I had gone on the first day of the year and to arrive there, we took a vessel boat at Trapiche de Icoaraci (a port)

The vessel was sort of small, made of  wood, I don’t remember the name, but it is known for making weird noises.

As It wasn’t really early, we were able to board quickly. 

A small problem

In the middle of the way, the vessel just stopped, no one understood, we stayed 10 minutes without moving, looking at each other.

Suddenly, another boat came, so we boarded in the new boat, after that we realized that our vessel had broken.

How is the Ilha de Cotijuba

When we got there, the beach that we were wanting to see was at the other side of the island. 

We were there walking through a village, which was simple, dirt streets and really simple houses, different from the ones that I am used to seeing, called pau a pique (a different and old brazilian technique of house building).

It had that same style from Ilha do Marajó (Marajó Island), but now with horses instead of buffaloes, there a lot of people riding bikes, this was the only type of transport allowed, since the cars could be used only for health and safety cases.

We walked for 10 minutes to get to Praia do Farol, one of the most important beaches in the region.

And the beach was crowded. On the first day of the year, a lot of people, some of them probably had been there since the New Year’s Eve.

I enjoyed the beach, it had dark sand and vegetation behind us, and the water was also a little bit dark.

The rain in Pará

It rained when we were there, it wasn’t raining a lot, it was like a drizzle.

It also rained when I was at the Mercado-ver-Peso (a supermarket)

And when I tried the delicious Tacacá.

There, I ate the best Tapioca (kind of a gum extracted from the manioc) that I have ever tried, it was only tapioca with cheese.


Ruínas do Presídio da Ilha de Cotijuba (Free traduction – prison ruins)

We stayed at the island for a short period of time.

On our way back, we saw the Ruínas do Presídio (Prison Ruins), as the name says: it is what remains from a prison in the region.

This prison was built in 1968, due to this, the island used to be called Ilha-presídio (Island-prison), which had a violent penal system, where there were condemned and politicians who were arrested.

And for that reason, people used to stay far away from there. 

The prison was closed in 1977.

But only in 1990 it became an Environmental Protection Area, the ruins now are island heritages.

A little more about the story 

Before the prison construction, the island used to be the Tupinambás (natives) home.

They named the island of Cotijuba, which means “Trilha Dourada” (Free traduction  golden trail) due to the yellow loam from the floor.

The last legend 

According to island residents, in 2005, the last prisoner died taking with him all the pain of the prison. 

Our way back from Ilha de Cotijuba

After passing by the Ruínas do Presídio towards the Terminal Hidroviário Poeta Antônio Tavernard (terminal waterway) we realized how crowded it was.

We stood in a queue for one hour only to buy tickets to get back to the hostel.

Then we waited a little longer to board.

This time, the vessel was bigger, there were about 300 plastic seats, the area was covered, this way, the passengers were protected from the warm Northern Brazil sun and also from the rain.

After landing, I ate Maniçoba (a typical Pará dish of indigenous origin) in a food stand near a handicraft Gallery. 

Ilha de Cotijuba is a place that worth visiting when you are at Belém do Pará. 

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