top 10 Brazilian beaches – 2009 edition

May 26, 2009 | By More

Having just revisited our favourite destinations in Brazil (10 must-see places in Brazil) it is time now to turn to the beaches. This is the 2009 version of our now two years old top 10: beaches. As drawing up an ordered list of 10 beaches is no mean task, I’ve decided to give three medals in order of preference and then present the remaining 7 beaches in pure alphabetical order.

If you click on location on the map you will be taken to a Google Maps page showing the exact location of the beach.


GOLD MEDAL: SANCHO beach (Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco – location on the map)

Praia do Sancho, Fernando de Noronha

Arriving in Fernando de Noronha is neither easy nor cheap. Once in the island, getting to Sancho beach is not that simple either. You can either descend through a metal stair placed on crack on the cliff, get there by boat, or walk from Porcos beach (access through this path has been closed for quite a while now). But the reward is worth the effort. Sancho is a crescent-shaped beach, with a massive cliff as a background and crystal-clear waters where you will want to dive as soon as you reach the beach. Half of what Sancho has to offer is found under the sea level. Sancho on its own would make a trip to Noronha worthwhile. More information at: destination: Fernando de Noronha.

SILVER MEDAL: ILHA DO CAMPECHE beach (Florianópolis, Santa Catarina – location on the map)

Ilha do Campeche

Access to the second beach on our ranking is not easy either. To reach the island of Campeche you need to board a boat and face the waves for an hour or jump into a rubber dinghy for a swift five-minute sail to the island. To ensure the survival for future generations of the idyllic island the time visitors are allowed to stay in the island is limited – and strictly enforced. The beach at Campeche island is dazzling. Both literally, as its whiter than white sands will blind your vision, and figuratively, as the combination of the white sands and turquoise waters is breathtaking. No other Brazilian beach gets as close to the Caribbean as Campeche Island. More information at Ilha do Campeche.

BRONZE MEDAL: CONCEIÇÃO beach (Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco – location on the map)

Praia da Conceição, Fernando de Noronha

One never tires of contemplating the imposing presence of the Morro do Pico, the serene keeper of Conceição beach. Another Noronha jewel, with one of the most beautiful beach landscapes of the entire Brazil. More information at: destination: Fernando de Noronha.

2. FROM FIFTH TO TENTH (in strict alphabetical order)

praia de Bainema, Boipeba, Brasil
Bainema (Boipeba, Bahía – location on the map)
Barra do Sahy
Barra do Sahy (Barra do Sahy, São Paulo – location on the map)
Cachadaço (Trindade, Río de Janeiro – location on the map)
Domingas Dias, Ubatuba
Domingas Dias (Ubatuba, São Paulo – location on the map)
praia do Forno, Arraial do Cabo
Forno (Arraial do Cabo, Río de Janeiro – location on the map)
tropical beach / playa tropical
Mangues (Ilha Grandelocation on the map)
Fernando de Noronha
Porcos (Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco – location on the map)


There is only room for ten beaches on our ranking, but there are plenty more beaches we really like. In alphabetical order:

Amor (Pipa, Rio Grande do Norte)
Bahia dos Golfinhos (Pipa, Rio Grande do Norte)
Caçimba do Padre (Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco)
Coqueiros (Trancoso, Bahía)
Félix (Ubatuba, São Paulo)
Ipanema (Rio de Janeiro)
Lopes Mendes (Ilha Grande, Río de Janeiro)
Moreré (destinos: Boipeba, Bahía)
Paraty-Mirim (Paraty, Río de Janeiro)
Pitinga (Arraial d’Ajuda, Bahía)
Quarta Praia (Morro de São Paulo, Bahía)

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Category: Top 10

Comments (4)

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  1. Diogo Pretto says:

    Paraty and Ilha Grande’s beaches are really wonderful! Excellent HONOURABLE MENTIONS!

  2. luca says:

    very good selection indeed , but in my opinion Ipanema is second to none !

  3. Divenus says:

    Did you forget Porto de Galinhas!!!
    It’s the most increidble beach in Brasil.
    Give it a chance, and prove it.

  4. Tony says:

    Divenus, I haven’t been to Porto de Galinhas so I couldn’t possibly add it to my list. But from what my dearest friends and relatives have told me, it is a place I am very unlikely to like. I don’t dig places where mass tourism has left his imprint and where environmental crime is rampant. The day tourism authorities at Porto get their act together and begin protecting whatever’s left of the reefs (admittedly, not much) I’ll be inclined to give it a chance.