Home | São Paulo Travel Guide | Coast | Coast of São Paulo Travel Guide

Coast of São Paulo Travel Guide

Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

The Brazilian coast between Rio de Janeiro and Santos (São Paulo) is one of the most interesting and beautiful regions in the world: many bays with wonderful beaches and islands, mountains with the Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Rain Forest), historic towns and indigenious villages, still not known to international tourism yet.

The Brazilian coast between Rio de Janeiro and Santos (São Paulo) is one of the most interesting and beautiful regions in the world: many bays with wonderful beaches and islands, mountains with the Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Rain Forest), historic towns and indigenious villages, still not known to international tourism yet.

Take the tour on our site along this coast, from Guarujá going northeast along the northern coast of São Paulo and continuing along the Costa Verde, the southern coast  of the state of Rio de Janeiro until Rio.

Map of São Paulo Coast

Something special:

If you have the time make a trip from São Paulo to Rio on the highland and return along the coast (Rio – Santos).

You will follow a long valley (Vale Paraíba) with high mountains also places to stop and make a visit as in Aparecida (with its famous cathedral), Campo do Jordão in the mountains (cold in winter) a nacional park and more. And finally, approaching Rio from the mountains is spectacular. If you are interested, you can fill out a form here…

South Coast of São Paulo

The Southern Coast from Santos to the island Ilha do Cardoso offers simple hotels and pousadas, but more nature in its origin.

Not developed as the northern coast of the state, because the Paulistanos prefer to go to the north, the southern part of the state offers many unique places to visit.

PETAR (Parque Estadual Turístico Alta Ribeira) is a national park with famous caves and a wonderful nature. Not highly developed there are only pousadas to stay, but you will be in direct contact with nature.

The island Ilha Compida and the city of Iguape at the coast are also some rather unknown but very exciting places for tourism with its unique nature and history.

Santos is the largest city at the coast of São Paulo, famous for its harbor, but also has lots of historic places and of course a beach.

Santos

Santos is a city in the south of the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Santos is the core city of Baixada Santista, a coastal metropolitan area with 1.6 million people, and contains the most important port in South America.

Santos is a municipality in the São Paulo state of Brazil, founded in 1546. It is partially located on the island of São Vicente which harbors both the city of Santos and the city of São Vicente, and partially on the mainland. It is the main city in Paulista Coast. As of 2006, its population was estimated at 418,375. Santos has the biggest seaport in Latin America; is a significant tourist center; has large industrial complexes and shipping centers, which handle a large portion of the world's coffee exports; as well as a number of other Brazilian exports including oranges, bananas and cotton.

The city also displays the Coffee Museum, where, once, coffee prices were negotiated; and a football memorial, dedicated to the city's greatest players, amongst which is Pelé. Its beach's garden, 5.335 Km length, figures in the Guinness Book of Records as the largest beach front garden.

To visit the seaside city of Santos is very popular among Brazilians from the country-side. Not only the sea and the climate attracts, but also the beautiful beach park / promenade, which is very pleasant to walk along. Here people exercise cycling, jogging or just sit down and drink some coconut water at one of many beach kiosks. Santos is also joined with Brazil’s first founded town, Sao Vicente, so this site has an interesting history to tell as well.

North Coast of São Paulo

The Northern Coast reaches from Guarujá to Ubatuba, to the border of Rio de Janeiro. It is highly developed with good hotels and pousadas (bed and breakfast).

Guarujá

Guarujá, only 90 km far from the capitol São Paulo, many of its inhabitants like to spend their weekends or vacations there. Guarujá offers well frequented beaches as well as beaches, where you will be more or less by yourself.

A big city as Guarujá of cause offers you everything that you wish. First class hotels, cheap lodging houses as well, golf and many other possibilities of sport, nightlife and shopping. The beach of Enseada is a well known place for jetskiing.

Guarujá was founded on September 2, 1893 and it counted just a hotel, a casino and 46 small houses. Today it has about 300,000 inhabitants. It is located on Santo Amaro island. The first European to land at the beach of Santa Cruz dos Navegantes was famous Américo Vespúcio at 22nd of January 1502.

The name Guarujá was given by the indian tribes that which means narrow passage (Guaru-ya), as it was the narrowest place between the continent and the island, devided by the Bertioga Canal.

Bertioga

Bertioga, the next large town north of Guarajá with its 30,000 inhabitants, offers an excellent infrastructure for tourism.

There is lodging for every taste and pocket, many possibilities for leisure and adventure (fishing, diving, walking, ecological trails and historical culture).

Bertioga has more than 30 km of beautiful beaches, nearly 500 km of Mata Atlântica with waterfalls, natural swimming pools and a large area of preservation.
Channel of Bertioga with fort

Ecotourism is very important in this region. There are several possibilities to visit the Mata Atlântica by canoe, but also with guides by foot.

Schooners, fishing boats and motorboats can be rented for fishing or swimming outside in the ocean or to visit an island.

Before Bertioga was founded by the Portuguese in about 1532, the place was occupied by Indians of the tribe Tupi-Guarani, that called the place of “Buriquioca” (house of the apes).

In 1547 the fort São João was built, which still exists and is the oldest in Brazil.

A big event is the Festa Nacional do Índio, taking place every year in April. Today, Bertioga is aware of the culture of the indigenous people. Since 2001 this takes place, meanwhile it is the largest native cultural event in Brazil with about 300,000 visitors from all parts of the world, presenting cultural manifestations, sporting traditions, corporal paintings and craft from many indigenous tribes.

Riviera de São Lourenço

Riviera de São Lourenço is a very modern and exclusive town at the coast. It is only 31.5 km from Guarujá and 120 km from São Paulo.

It offers everything that you need for life: a shopping center, good restaurants, bars etc. The beaches are very clean, you can make long walks and enjoy the lovely Atlantic Ocean. From Riviera de São Lourenço are many tours to the Mata Atlântica possible.
Riviera de de São Lourenço, São Paulo, Brazil

A must is to visit the quiosques at the road to São Sebastião, only a few kilometers away: they are famous for their fish, directly from the fishing boat.

Close to Riviera de São Lourenço there are some condomínios, where rich people have their beach houses, many are also available for you. These condomínios (for example Costa do Sol) are not public, so you can spend a very quiet time there. There is also the one or other hotel.

Boracéia

at km 190 of the road Rio – Santos
141 km from São Paulo
32 km from Bertioga, 62 km to São Sebastião

The wonderful open sea, calm and transparent, is ideal for children and perfect for sports as walking, fishing or bicycling or just enjoying the sun.

Boracéia is good for surprises, the 9 km long beach hidden by the hill of Ponta da Boracéia. Another place nearby is the Rio Silveiras’s Indigenous Reservation, where tribes of Guarani Indians live and sell their crafts and plants at the Rio – Santos road. With authorization of the Indians it is possible to access the waterfall that goes down the mountains close to the village.

Little inhabited beach and well preserved, but with great hotel and gastronomical structure.

Juréia

As Juréia is not located directly at the Rodóvia Rio – Santos it is rather unknown. Most cars pass without noticing the road leading to this beach.

A small bay in the form of a horse shoe with a wonderful sand makes you feel great. The beach is falling rather steep to the ocean, which is perfect for surfers on windy days.

The village has high standard hotels, offering everything you need for relaxing: libraries, video, massages, swimming pool, bars, restaurants.

Barra do Una

at km 185 of the road Rio – Santos
135 km from São Paulo
19 km from Bertioga, 57 km from São Sebastião

The village is close to the Rio Uno and has an authentic atmosphere with fishermen, artisans and nice restaurants. The beach offers good conditions for surfers and swimmers.

You have many possibilities to make trips to sea by boat, but also by canoe on the Rio Uno.

The most beautiful trails of the litoral norte to the Mata Atlântica are possible with many waterfalls, animals and plants. Kajaking is also a possibilty to see the beauty of the rain forest from another angle.

From the high hill that is between Barra do Una and Juquehy, you will have a wonderful view.

Juquehy

at km 173 of the road Rio – Santos

Another wonderful place along the coast is Juquehy: beaches with white sand and clear blue water and of course the Mata Atlântica as well.

Paulistas own here their beach houses, but also hotels, flats and pousadas are avaliable for tourists. From the marina there are tours available to the islands called As Ilhas, Dos Gatos and Montão de Trigo.

Different to the smaller towns Juquehy also offers night life, small shopping centers, many artcraft and its cuisine is famous.

But still Juquehy is not crowded and noisy as some other places in the world.

Barra do Sahy

km 172 of the road Rio – Santos
145 km from São Paulo
28 km from Bertioga, 44 km from São Sebastião

The beach of Barra do Sahy (or Saí) is formed like a horseshoe, with light sand and a wonderful sight to As Ilhas (“The Islands”). The village is not directly at the road from Santos to Rio, no traffic disturbs. For all, that like snorkels and diving, a trip with the schooner is worthwhile. The basin molded by the sea is impressive at the Canto Bravo.
Barra do Sahy, north coast of São Paulo , Brazil

From the river, fishermen go daily to the work on sea. Tourists also leave from there to the also beautiful islands to rest, to admire the nature or to dive.

Barra do Sahy has an excellent infrastructure, with good hotels and restaurants.

Camburi

It is only 44 km from Bertioga and 167 km from São Paulo at km 167 of the Rodovia Rio – Santos

Divided by a small peninsula, Camburi (also written Cambury)and Camburizinho are one of the more beautiful landscapes of the area. The beach with white sand, the ocean in a bright blue color and with perfect waves.

It is as well a favorite place for surfers as well as for radical sports like mountain biking. Walks on ecological trails are possible and of cause relaxing at the beach or the swimming pools of the hotels. The Atlantic forest, rivers and old farms give a magic touch to the region.

In Camburi various artists and people interested in promoting the local art, which they show in the street along the beach and in the center of Camburi. You can find typical art objects, as the works in colored wood that show the fauna and the characteristics of the area.

Camburi and its beaches are frequented by artists of TV, media and politics, and for those who like night life, Camburi is an extraordinary point.

São Sebastião

The city is one of the oldest at the coast, the island of São Sebastião, better known as Ilhabela (Beautiful Island) is only 2 miles off the coast. São Sebastião is a port for oil and has oil industry, but has a small historic center which is worthwhile to see. Its name the city has from Amerigo Vespucci, who passed at January 20th, 1502 (the day of Saint Sebastian) the channel between the island and the continent.
historic center of São Sebastião, Sao Paulo

In front of the city there are a few nice beaches, but also you can make many trips from here to the island Ilhabela, to Ubatuba in the northeast or to the southwest with the beautiful beaches of the communities of São Sebastião as Maresias, Toque Toque, Juquehy, Barra do Una, Barra do Sahy and others. Also, as in the complete region, there are many possibilities to make walks in the atlantic rainforest, seeing the unique flora and fauna, having a shower under a waterfall or swimming in a natural pool. These tours are only possible with a guide licensed by the government.

Ilhabela

Ilhabela (beautiful island), as the island is called, was discovered 1502 by Américo Vespúci, who gave her the name Ilha do São Sebastão. With its 340 square kilometres it is the largest Brazilian island in the Atlantic ocean. The origin is of volcanos.

Map of Ilhabela

See videos about Ilhabela

You approach Ilhabela in a twenty minute trip via ferry boat from the city of São Sebastião. If there is a chance you also should spend some time visiting the old centre of São Sebastão.

Ilhabela offers many possibilies to the visitor: beaches, 360 waterfalls and the rain forest (Mata Atlântica). 85% of the island are protected area. Many good guided tours are possible. It also is well known for its cachaça.
Ilhabela, São Sebastião, São Paulo

The main beaches, hotels and villages are located at the calm side of the island at the channel facing the continent, with a road from north to south. The other side of the island you can only reach by jeep or by boat. It is windier there, perfect for surfers.

Around the island there are many ship wrecks, something special for divers.

To see all of the island you should hire a boat for a trip of two days and if you are lucky, you will see dolphins.

Ubatuba

Ubatuba is the city most north at the coast of São Paulo, the tropic of Capricorn passes the city. The next city further north is Paraty in the state of Rio de Janeiro.

Map  of Ubatuba

In 1554 the first settlement was established, since 1855 Ubatuba is a town.

A part of the community of Ubatuba is in the Parque Estadual da Serra do Mar (State Park of the Serra do Mar), one of the largest protected areas in the state.

Ubatuba is well known for its 92 beaches, which are, depending on the location, are perfect for surfers or for swimming and tanning. The beaches close to the center of the city are said not to be very clean.
coast of Ubatuba, São Paulo

If you want to see one of the most beautiful and loneliest beaches of Brazil you have to go to the  Praia do Cedro, surrounde by protected rainforest and with a big maritim life, ideal for  diving or snorkeling. You get there by walking about one hour from the beach  Praia da Fortaleza.

Very popular for surfing is the beach Praia Vermelho, not far from the city. Some miles further north you can find  some quiet places as Picinguaba, which is in the center of the State Park Serra do Mar.
Praia Picinguaba, Ubatuba, São Paulo

The city itself has a small part with beautiful old houses in which mainly are shops, restaurants, pousadas (guest houses) or hotels. At the seaside there is the local station of  Projeto Tamar, that preserves the population of turtles. You should pay a visit there in any case.

Also worthwhile are trips by schooners, for example early in the morning to the island Ilha Anchieta, where you can make a walk to the ruins of a former prison (1902 – 1914). The ocean around the Ilha Anchieta is one of the most beautiful diving areas of Brazil.
prison on Ilha Anchieta, Ubatuba, São Paulo

More ruins, worthwhile to visit, but on the continent and very close to the center, are the Ruinas Lagoinha, of a big old fazenda (farm). And a bit north of the city, off the road Rio – Santos, is the Casa da Farinha (House of Flour), an old mill.
Casa de Farinha, Ubatuba, São Paulo

On the way north to Paraty, directly below the road Rio -Santos you should make a break (parking the car on the side of the road – don´t leave things visible in the car) and walk a few meters down to the waterfall Cachoeira Prumirim, where you can swim in a natural pool or slide down the polished rocks.

Shortly before the border to the State of Rio de Janeiro there is another waterfall, directly on the left side of the road Rio – Santos, called Cachoeira Escadas. On the right side of the road there is a road leaving to the beach most north of Ubatuba, Praia Cambury. In this region, in the rainforest, is a quilombo (settlement of runaway slaves), which was discovered only in the year 2005 and may only be visited with a guide. The quilombo is under special protection of the government.

Coast of São Paulo Travel Guide  and Tourism Information  such as accommodation, festivals, transport, maps, activities and attractions in São Paulo, Brazil - Brazil Travel Guide and Tourism Information

  • email Email to a friend
  • print Print version
  • Plain text Plain text
Tagged as: