Ask any Brazilian which are the best beaches in Brazil and they will tell you it’s impossible to decipher. With nearly 7,500 km of stunning tropical coastline, there is really no shortage of hot white sand and turquoise blue sea to dip your toes into. In fact we’d go as far as saying Brazil has among the finest beaches in the world. From stretches busier than the Maracana at the World Cup final, to quiet idyllic islands with secluded havens and from city-backed hotspots to jungle-backed hideaways, your personal paradise exists.
But if you’re looking for something off the beaten path, here are our top 5 secret beaches in Brazil. So, what are you waiting for, grab your bathing suit and Havaianas and let’s go!
Praia de Itacoatiara | Surfer’s Paradise
One of Brazil’s best kept secrets is Niterói, a small but enchanting city laying just across the Guanabara bay from Rio de Janeiro. Niterói, just a short trip from the mainland, is far quieter and almost unheard of when it comes to tourists and travelers. It has a number of wonderful secluded beaches named after the surrounding neighborhoods including Icarai, Charitas, Sao Francisco, Itacoatiara, Camboinhas, Pratinininga and Itaipu. Each has a slightly different characteristic. Some are wide, which gentle water, more fitting for a lazy day. Others have large crashing waves, perfect for surfers. Itacoatiara, a surfer’s paradise, is locked between two rocky mountains and often has strong waves. Grab a bus from just outside the ferry in Niterói and stay until sunset for the perfect secret beach experience.
Fernando de Noronha | Diving in Brazil
OK, we’re going to go ahead an say it: Fernando de Noronha is one of the most beautiful places in the world. This magical island, accessed from Recife and Natal is a picture perfect archipelago of 21 islands, complete with secluded stretches of sand and an underwater life to rival the Little Mermaid. Head to this magical island to experience some of the best diving, from wreck dives to swimming with schools of dolphins and a variety of unique fish. If you are looking for paradise, look no further.
Jericoacoara | Laid back Vibes
Jericoacoara is a wonderful little fishing village and kitesurfing mecca on the northern coast of Ceará, not far from Fortaleza and Sao Luis. Undeniably one of the top 5 secret beaches in Brazil, you cannot fail to fall in love with Jericoacoara. With an enormous stretch of sand backing onto large sand dunes it is the perfect spot for watching the sun go down or admiring the flips and kicks of the kitesurfers. You can honestly feel your stress and anxiety dissipate as you walk barefoot down the sand carpeted streets from your luxury apartment to the restaurants and onto the beach. It’s unpretentious, laid back and a fabulous place to spend a few days or a few weeks.
Ilha Grande | A jewel of the Emerald Coast
A short drive, a boat trip and a hop south of Rio de Janeiro is the island of Ilha Grande, a jewel of the Emerald Coast. Escape to one of the secret beaches in Brazil and soak up the pristine forests and deserted beaches. Wherever the sea meets the land you can find a stunning beach, but perhaps the most famous and the most beautiful is Lopes Mendes beach. What makes it even more special and more deserving is that you have to trek through the rainforest to find it. The island offers a packed schedule of nature’s best activities from surfing, swimming, snorkelling, kayaking or mountain biking as well as hiking opportunities in the Atlantic forest and stunning scenic views. Explore all the nooks and crannies around the island in a boat trips or enjoy a long lunch in any of the restaurants and bars. Our favorite part is that there is absolutely no traffic on the island, it is truly a spot to get back to basics.
Praia do Forte | Brazil beaches
Just north of Salvador on Bahia’s Costa dos Coqueiros, the Coconut Coast, is the magical Praia Do Forte. Miles of white sands, fringed by palm trees and lapped by the Atlantic Ocean create a perfect holiday destination. Away from the cobbled streets in the center of town, about a ten to fifteen minute walk away, the beach is the real reason to visit for most. Praia do Forte Beach is roughly six miles long. Along the shores, the water is clean, clear, and calm, making it a great setting for swimming, snorkeling, and diving. Our favorite feature is when the tide is low, the surrounding reefs create beautiful natural swimming pools, perfect for sunbathing, socializing or just sitting peacefully watching the passing marine life.
Ipanema Beach | (OK, not a secret but we couldn’t resist)
This really isn’t a secret beach but any account of Brazil’s best beaches has to mention the famous Ipanema. Welcome to the world’s sexiest beach. Nestled between Arpoador and Leblon with Rio de Janeiro as your backdrop, it’s frequently hard to find a spot to sunbathe on this legendary crescent of white sand. Head down from your luxury Ipanema penthouse on the weekend when the beach is alive with activity especially between Posto 8 and Posto 10 where the cities sexiest people can be found topping up their tan. From dawn until dusk, balls are always bouncing with every sport imaginable involving a football from volley ball, to football and a hybrid combining the two; futevolley. Snap a photo worth a thousand words of the towering Dois Irmãos, the setting sun over Arpoador, a candid snap of a famous football player honing his skills, or if you’re lucky a bronzing supermodels along the beach. On Sunday, walk up the beach to the famous Ipanema Hippie Fair which is held at the Praça General Osório or grab a Caipirinha from any of the Barracas (beach stands).Brazil, Insider guide to Niterói, Insider guide to Rio de Janeiro, Ipanema Vacation Rental, Rio de Janeiro, Top Accommodation in Copacabana and Ipanema