For travelers looking to experience an exotic beach location, Brazil is a great destination. The largest country in South America is known for great soccer players, tropical rainforests, beautiful women, and beautiful beaches. Here is our list of best beaches in Brazil for you to explore.
1. Baia do Sancho
This beach frequently snags the top spot on TripAdvisor’s Best Beaches in the World list. Yes, the world. Surrounded by towering cliffs, it features blindingly blue waters and incredible coral reefs full of turtles and tropical fish. It is also super secluded — so secluded, in fact, that to get there you basically have to follow a dirt road and brave some very steep, rickety ladders through a crack in a rock wall.
An east-coast fishing village whose sheer Brazilian gorgeousness has made it an international byword for sophistication. Now home to a handful of smart boutique hotels, it’s blessed with some superlative sands. You don’t need to have a modelling contract to come here, but it helps.
3. Arpoador Beach
Known as the birthplace of surfing in Brazil, this beach is a haven for the active. Surfboards can be rented on the beach and a weight-lifting area allows locals and visitors to exercise under the sun. At dawn, grab a spot on the large rocks bordering the shore for an incredible sunset view. Those who stick around afterward can take to the water at night when spotlights illuminate the water.
Paraty is the jewel in the crown of the Costa Verde, the stretch of coastline which links Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, a mix of history and beaches which has created one of the most likeable towns in the whole of Brazil. Just a three hour journey south from Rio de Janeiro, Paraty is a small UNESCO Heritage Listed town which oozes charm. Surrounded by a landscape of forests, beautiful islands out to sea and countless beaches it is hard not to fall for Paraty.
5. Copacabana Beach
Copacabana beach’s fame has spread worldwide – few beaches are more well-known than this 2.5-mile stretch of sand. It will no doubt be busy, but one of the pleasures of traveling is mixing with local people – and in the case of Rio de Janeiro, beautiful people! Many tourists begin their Brazil holiday in Rio, and this beach should be on the list of places to see before moving on.
Copacabana beach was actually increased in size to prevent the sea from reaching right up to the road, and is now a place where you can find more than just sun-worshippers – beach volleyball and football matches continue throughout the day.
6. Santos Beach
The town of Santos has been the largest seaport in the Sao Paulo region for many centuries. Long known for the export of coffee, this area has gone from consisting of large export businesses like the famed coffee stock exchange to a bustling city of almost half a million. The remnants of the coffee empire can still be visited by tourists, along with many other sites. The city boasts the longest beach garden in the world. Although great for morning walks, at peak times these beaches can get very crowded.
7. Praia do Toque
São Miguel dos Milagres fringes 15km of beaches protected both by reefs and the lack of a highway – the main coastal road turns inland, and only those in the know take the local road that leads to a forest of coconut trees and scattered villages. The sea is always warm; up to 36ºC at low tide in mid-afternoon – thalassotherapy for free! Set up base at Praia do Toque and walk the sands nearby. Twenty minutes north is Tatuamunha river, a sanctuary for manatees. Forty minutes south are two picture-perfect crescents: São Miguel and Praia do Riacho. At low tide hire a jangadeiro (a small traditional fishing boat) and head to the tidal pools.
8. Porto da Barra
In many ways, Porto da Barra is to Salvador (capital of the state of Bahia) what Bondi is to Sydney and Venice Beach is to Los Angeles.
Tiny fishing boats bring in the day’s catch, there’s beach volleyball and plenty to see at the Fisherman Colony Manguinhos, a traditional fish market in Buizos. This is one of the few beaches in the lively city of Salvador that faces west, so you can catch great sunsets.
9. Ipanema Beach
Ipanema Beach is one of the finest Brazil beaches primarily for two reasons. One, because of its crowd, which, to say in a mellow manner, is very attractive. And two, because of its chilled out ambience which includes performers, open-air gyms, and a boardwalk where one is served caipirinhas. Also, did you know, the song “The Girl from Ipanema” by Frank Sinatra was inspired by the women here.
10. Canoa Quebrada
Just a few hours away from Fortaleza and minutes from the equator, Canoa Quebrada enchants visitors with its incredible sunrises and sunsets. It not uncommon for beachgoers to climb the beach’s highest sand dunes to witness this spectacular view. Windsurfing, swimming, sun tanning, and people-watching are the daylight past-times; while the bars and nightspots along Rua da Broadway keep the scene hot after the sunset. One of the more dramatic ways to get to Canoa Quebrada from town is by dune buggy.
11. Lopes Mendes
Voted one of the top ’10 Most Beautiful Beaches in the World’ by Vogue magazine, Lopes Mendes is a remote, hidden beach that’s not easy to get to, but if you’re looking for seclusion and spectacular beauty, you won’t mind the steep and muddy 20-minute trek from the village of Palmas on Ilha Grande. Your reward will be a two-mile, crescent beach with some of the whitest, finest sand stretching out to waters that are a striking iridescent blue. There are no facilities of any kind in sight or trees for shade, so bring plenty of sunscreen along with food and drink.
If you’ve ever watched a video of someone kite boarding during a hurricane and thought “I could do that!” then head to Jericoacoara. The town is a favorite for kite boarding, windsurfing, and sand boarding down the massive dunes by the shore. The town has been transformed into a touristy destination in recent years, but weird local laws still dictate small-town features, like sandy roads and no street lighting, giving the place a downtempo vibe.
If you harbor dreams of endless sandbars, make it your business to visit Maragogi. This beach town in the state of Alagoas is relatively unexplored and famed for the Galés natural pools – crystalline waters with colorful sea life.
14. Porto de Galinhas
This stunner is consistently voted one of Brazil’s beast beaches thanks to its super clear waters and natural rock pools. In fact, it was voted “Best Brazilian Beach” nine times in a row by local magazine Voyage & Tourism.