Beaches in the southern coast of Pernambuco
Beaches below are listed in geographic order: Piedade is the beach nearest Recife, while Coroa Grande is the farthest to the south (near the border with Alagoas).
The name means "Piety". The Piedade beach, urban, is located in the city of
Jaboatão dos Guararapes, which makes border to the south of Recife. The Piedade beach is an extension of Boa Viagem beach, with many bars, restaurants and other fun options.
Also an urban beach of Jaboatão, Candeias, with 3 km of extension, is also similar to Boa Viagem beach. Candeias has few hotels, but a good number of good restaurants by the beach.
Barra de Jangada
Near Recife, very quiet. Good for those looking for tranquility.
Beautiful beach, strong waves. It used to be a point for surfing, but, because of sharks, the activity was forbidden. Distant 45 km from Recife. Itapuama offers a camping area. Access: BR-101 south, PE-60, PE-29.
Distant 46 km from Recife. The beach is semi-desert, and is not protected by the reefs. Near Paiva, there is a well of black mud, that is believed to be healthy for the skin. Access via Itapuama beach.
Pedra do Xaréu
The name means "Stone of xaréus"; xaréu is a kind of fish which abounds in the area. Semi-desert beach, with a few kioskes offering meals and drinks. Protected by reefs, which causes the formation of natural pools during the low tide. Access: BR-101 south, PE-60, PE-29.
Enseada dos Corais
The name means "Corals Cove". The beach is protected by the reefs; the waves are small, and natural pools are common. Several condos have been built around this area; the beach becomes busy in weekends and holidays. Distance from Recife: 47 km.
Also protected by reefs, the beach of Gaibu has tranquil waters, small waves. Many bars and restaurants along the beach. Gaibu was discovered by hippies in past years, and to date maintains an air of freedom.
This is one of the most beautiful beaches in Pernambuco and Brazil. Many palm trees, crystal clear waters. Calhetas is a preferred destination for practioners of diving and submarine fishing. Distant 49 km from Recife. Access: BR-101 South, PE-60 and PE-29.
Cabo de Santo Agostinho
Not a beach, but a city many beaches belong to.
The name means "Paradise". This is the shortest beach in Pernambuco; it´s a strand of sand, 30 meters long, amid walls of stones; many palms and other trees overlooking the sea. There are bars and restaurants, but rustic.
This beach was chosen for the construction of the Port of Suape, the largest in the State; nearby, the river Massangana meets the Atlantic Ocean.
Semi-desert beach, good for explorers. Pools are formed during the low tide. Distance from Recife: 49 km.
The name means "High Wall", and is explained by the walls 3 m high which surround the beach. Some of the best hotels in Pernambuco were built in Muro Alto (check out Nannai and Summerville in the hotels of Pernambuco section); the area is receiving massive investments, both public (to improve infrastructure, particularly roads) and private (hotels and resorts). The beach is about 2,5 km long, with natural pools all along. Distance from Recife: 60 km. Access: BR-101 Sul, PE-60 and PE-09.
Near Porto de Galinhas. Many palm trees, and waves slightly higher (because of a gap in the reefs). Sea sater is warm and green.
Porto de Galinhas
Several Brazilian travel magazines have elected Porto de Galinhas as the most beautiful beach in Brazil. About 18 km long, very low waves, very shallow waters.
Not protected by the reefs, the beaches in Maracaípe usually have high waves. One of the rounds of the Brazilian Circuit of Surf happens in Maracaípe.
The name means "Little Bay". A small cove near the mouth of river Maracaípe. Reefs, many trees, quiet waters, areas of mangrove.
Reefs all along. Several condos are being built, making access to the best beaches harder. Distance from Recife: 67 km.
Waves a bit stronger. Cacimbas has a section of reef which is about 50 meters wide, large enough to have a natural pool inside; see this photo of Cacimbas (credit: Government of Pernambuco).
High waves, sand is fine and white. A few luxury condos built here, making the beach hard to access. Distance from Recife: 80 km.
Barra de Sirinhaém, Guaiamum e Gamela
These beaches are all part of a same bay. There are bars and inns around the area. Nearby, the river Sirinhaém pours into the Ocean. Distance from Recife: 75 km. Access: BR-101 Sul, PE-60, PE-61.
Bay with quiet water, falesias and black rocks. Also, has been taken by several private luxury condos, making access more difficult. Distance from Recife: 80 km.
Praia dos Carneiros
The name means "Beach of the Sheeps". Other beach which competes for the title of most beautiful in the State. The beach is near the mouth of river Formoso, which throws its dark water into the Ocean; the river also favors the growth of mangroves in the region.
One of the busiest beaches in the south of Pernambuco, particularly during weekends and holidays. Good support for nautic sports. Distance from Recife: 100 km. Access: PE-60 e PE-76.
Boca da Barra
Extension of the Tamandaré beach, near the mouth of rier Mamocabinha. Quiet waters, reefs and plenty of seaweed. The ruins of Fortress of Tamandaré (built in 1691) can be visited.
Praia do Porto
Access is difficult, but those who get there are enchanted by a nearly untouched beach. Nature combined sand, rocks and trees to create a wonderful scape.
Praia da Várzea do Una
Large bay, strong waves. Popular among those who practice submarine fishing.
The name means "Big Crown"; "crown" is a reference to the rocky formations which become visible during the low tides, trapping the water and forming natural pools. This beach belongs to the city of São José da Coroa Grande; the city is quiet but offers a good structure of hotels and restaurants.