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Ilheus

Trip Planner South America  /  Brazil  /  State of Bahia  /  Ilheus
(3.5/5 based on 5,000+ reviews for top 30 attractions)
Things to do: beaches, historic sites, museums

Little Princess of the South

Nestled in the heart of Brazil's cacao-producing region, Ilheus offers a blend of attractive architecture, coastal scenery, and intriguing history. Founded in 1534, the city grew rich on cacao late in the 19th century, sparking heated and often violent rivalries among the elite plantation owners, who used slave labor to harvest the crop. The city's most famous son, Jorge Amado, paints a vivid potrait of Ilheus' cacao wars in several of his novels. Today the wide beaches, warm waters, and tropical surroundings inspire many visitors to take a trip to Ilheus. When using our Brazil holiday planner, you're building your holiday based on your own interests, visitor reviews, and the informed opinions of our well-traveled writers.
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Where to stay

Thanks to the city's well-developed tourist infrastructure, you won't have any trouble finding accommodations in Ilheus. For a luxurious experience, stay in a resort or eco-lodge on the seashore, where you'll have easy beach access and a relaxed atmosphere. You can experience beach proximity at a fraction of the price by booking a private bungalow or beachside cabin. There's no better way to get a feel for the city's history, however, then by looking away from the center and staying on a cacao plantation in the nearby hills, where you'll be able to see how the "chocolate tree" is grown and harvested.
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