Where are the best beaches in Brazil? Are there any that are still unspoilt?
over a year ago
Much of Brazil's coastline is still undeveloped, and beach-hopping along it in search of the best stretches of sand is all part of the fun. The size of the country means that unless you have several months to explore you're probably best off focusing on just one or two areas, though:
If you're going to be in the south of Brazil, I'd recommend visiting the Emerald Coast. The real jewel in its crown is Ilha Grande, an unspoilt, wild beach island that's a relatively short bus and ferry ride away from Rio, and which still harbours one of Brazil's last remaining swathes of Atlantic rainforest.
Heading further north, Trancoso and neighbouring Caraiva are two of my favourite beach towns. Trancoso is more chic but still laid-back, while Caraiva only recently acquired mains electricity and still has only sand roads, so it's the perfect place to really escape from it all. Both are idyllic.
Bahia and the northeast probably boast the very best coastline in the whole of Brazil - Salvador makes a good base for intrepid sunseekers. The weather here is more tropical due to the proximity to the Equator, so it also tends to be hotter and sunnier for more of the year than the south. The island of Tinharé, reached by ferry from Salvador, is a great starting point – try the towns of Morro de São Paulo and Boipeba. The latter is less developed; a throwback to what better-known Morro de São Paulo used to be like some years ago.
Further north still, I recommend Pipa in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, where dolphins playfully come to shore to show off in front of swimmers, and the fishing village of Jericoacoara in Ceará.
There are plenty more but I'll leave you to discover them for yourself!