The main tourist attractions of the island of Fernando de Noronha are undoubtedly its numerous beaches and the transparency and color of the sea. In addition to this, the high cliffs that characterize much of the coast of the island are also very spectacular.
The island has a total of fourteen beaches all very beautiful and deserted. They are generally divided between those located in the “Mar de Dentro” and those in the “Mar de Fora”.
Along the “Mar de Dentro”, that is the coast facing Brazil, there are most of the Fernando de Noronha beaches. Here you also have the best conditions for swimming, because this is the part of the coast most sheltered from the winds. Starting from the port we find: the Praia do Porto, Praia do Cachorro, Praia do Meio, Praia da Conceição (Italcable), Praia do Boldró, Praia do Americano, Praia do Bode, Praia Cachimba do Padre (Quixaba), Morro Dois Irmãos (Baía dos Porcos), Baía do Sancho.
Along the “Mar de Fora” there are only four beaches: the Praia do Atalaia, the Enseada das Caieiras, the Praia do Leão and the Baía do Sueste.
Due to the prevailing winds regime, the waters of the “Mar de Dentro” beaches are very calm during the months from April to September. While those in the “Mar de Fora” are calmer in the months between November and February.
Three of Fernando de Noronha’s beaches are generally referred to as the three most beautiful beaches in Brazil. These are the Baía do Sancho, the Praia do Leão and the Morro Dois Irmãos (Baía dos Porcos).
BEACHES OF FERNANDO DE NORONHA
PRAIA DO CACHORRO
Located just below the town of Vila dos Remédios, Praia do Cachorro is the “busiest” beach on the island. On the right side of the beach, looking at the sea, among the rocks, there is the Buraco do Galego, a natural stone swimming pool set among the cliff. Along the beach there is the small Bar do Cachorro, while in the woods above the beach there are the ruins of the fort of Sant’Ana.
PRAIA DO MEIO
This is a beautiful, often deserted beach located in a small bay between the beaches of Cachorro and Conceição. At the junction between this beach and that of Conceição is the Bar do Meio, excellent for relaxing or for eating something after a walk along the beach, here there is also the rock called “Pião”, a characteristic stone hovering over other smaller stones.
PRAIA DA CONCEIÇÃO (ITALCABLE)
This beach, located at the base of Morro do Pico, is a large and long beach dominated by the mountain peak. The origin of the name of this beach is linked to the fort of Nossa Senhora da Conceição which was built here in the 18th century and then transformed into a hospital in the 19th century and whose ruins are still visible hidden in the vegetation near the Bar de Meio. In the peninsula that juts out towards the sea there is a rock, called “Pião”, 10 meters high and hovering over other smaller stones.
In 1925 the Italian firm Italcable established a base on this beach to install the submarine cable of the telegraph, from this originates the second name with which the beach is known.
PRAIA DO BOLDRÓ, PRAIA DO AMERICANO, PRAIA DO BODE
This is a beautiful area of the island, Praia do Boldró is a beautiful beach with the Morro do Pico on one side and the Morro dos Dois Irmãos on the other. High in a panoramic position is the fort of São Pedro do Boldró, which is an excellent viewpoint for sunsets.
PRAIA CACIMBA DO PADRE
In my opinion this is the most beautiful beach on the island, very large (175 m. on average) and long (900 m.) With the Morro dos Dois Irmãos, two twin basaltic rock formations that rise from the water to complete the landscape. The original name of the beach was Praia Quixaba, but in 1888 the prison chaplain (father Francisco Adelino de Brito Dantas) discovered a freshwater source and the name was changed for this reason.
MORRO DOIS IRMÃOS, BAÍA DOS PORCOS
The Baía dos Porcos is a small bay, really beautiful, almost without sand and covered with basaltic rocks, the clear water and the two stacks of the Morro dos Dois Irmãos make this area the most scenic of the whole island.
High on the western tip of the bay are the remains of the São João Baptista dos Dois Irmãos fort. Access to the bay is a bit difficult because of the rocks and is done by passing through the beach of Cachimba do Padre.
This bay is considered the second most beautiful of all the beaches in Brazil, however don’t worry also the third (Praia do Leão) and the first most beautiful beach (Baía do Sancho) in Brazil are located in Fernando de Noronha!
BAÍA DO SANCHO
Isolated and surrounded by a rocky wall, this bay with a beautiful and extensive beach is one of the best for swimming. Access to the beach is via an adventurous path with stairs between the rocks. This is considered the most beautiful beach in Brazil. Boat tours always stop for a swim in this bay.
BAÍA DE SANTO ANTÔNIO E PRAIA DO PORTO
Baía de Santo Antônio is a natural bay, used as a port for unloading and loading boats, boats leave from the port that take tourists to visit the island from the sea.
The bay offers a beautiful view of the secondary islands that form the Fernando de Noronha archipelago and is a great place to watch sunsets. In its vicinity there are the ruins of the fort of Santo Antonio.
PONTA DE SANTO ANTÔNIO
Located at the exact point where the inside sea (Mar de Dentro) and the outside sea (Mar de Fora) meet. This is a nice place to see the secondary islands, including the island of São José with the only fortress located outside the main island, the Fort of São José do Morro.
PRAIA DO LEÃO
A beautiful long beach (450 m.), The best in the Mar de Fora. Its name derives from a large rock, which in profile vaguely resembles a sea lion. Near the beach there are the remains of the fort of Bom Jesus do Leão.
BAÍA DO SUESTE
Another beautiful beach in the Mar de Fora. It was in this bay that the Portuguese fleet, which aimed to take the archipelago back from the Dutch, landed in 1629. Near the sea it is the only example of mangroves in an oceanic island, an ecological rarity.
PONTA DAS CARACAS
Ponta das Caracas is a rocky point with several natural pools among the rocks. From the viewpoints you can enjoy beautiful views of the Praia do Leão and the Baia do Suéste, the Ilha do Frade is also visible in the Baia da Atalaia. On the Ponta das Caracas there are also the ruins of the fort of São Joaquim do Sueste.
PRAIA DA ATALAIA
A bay of black volcanic stones, corals and Ilha do Frade as a reference in the center of the bay. This bay can only be visited in limited numbers, it is necessary to take a ticket, the visits last about 30 minutes, you can swim in the natural pools with the fish. It is advisable to visit it early in the morning in order not to risk not being admitted if the maximum number of visitors admitted per day is exceeded.
ENSEADA DA CAIERA
A rugged coastline surrounded by sand dunes.
The classic boat ride that takes place in Fernando de Noronha is along the coast of the so-called “Mar de Dentro”. The boat itinerary starts from the Baia de Santo Antonio, where first the navigation will be made around the small islands of the archipelago, such as Ilha da Rata, Ilha Sela Gineta, Ilha Rasa, Ilha do Cuscuz, etc. Then the boat will pass in front of Vila dos Remedios, the beaches of Cachorro, de Meio, Conceição, Boldro, Cachimba do Padre, Morro dos Dois Irmãos and finally it will arrive at the Baía do Sancho.
Once you reach the Baia dos Golfinhos, home of hundreds of dolphins who live here freely, you can observe the dolphins that follow the boat. The boat tour will continue to Ponta da Sapata, where there is a hole in the rock that resembles the map of Brazil. At the end the boat stops in Baia do Sancho for snorkeling and swimming.