Welcome to Arraial do Cabo, Rio de Janeiro

Hello guys! I’m gonna tell a little bit about a paradise in Brazil called Arraial do Cabo.

Arraial do Cabo is in the coast of Rio de Janeiro (around two hours from the capital). So if you are thinking about visiting Rio, try to stay a few days in Arraial do Cabo and Armação dos Búzios (I’m preparing a post about Búzios).

What can you do there?

There are at least five famous beaches in Arraial. The city is very modest, it resembles a fishing village.

So, I’ll tell you what we did in three days and them you can do the same things there.

Day One

You can start by visiting the easiest beach to get to: Prainha (Little Beach). From the road you can see this beach. And then you’ll see why Arraial is considered the Caribbean of Brazil. Prainha has some waves but nothing too dangerous. It’s one of the most popular beaches and it’s kind of crowed, especially in the summer. You can eat there since there are various food kiosks. You can spend all morning here and them go to Praia Grande (Long Beach) in the afternoon and see one of the most beautiful sunset ever!


Praia Grande (Long Beach) as the name says is very long. The waters here are very cold, so go prepared! There are many places where you can eat there. We recomend “Point Calamares” because of the great food, live music (at night) and excelent customer service. 

But the best thing about Praia Grande is the sunset: one of the most beautiful ones I’ve ever seen in my life!

Praia Grande – Photo: Viaje Caju
Sunset in Praia Grande – Photo: Viaje Caju

Day Two

We selected this day to go on a boat trip to visit the following sightseeings: Ilha do Farol, Praia do Farol, Gruta Azul, Praia do Forno e Prainha do Pontal do Atalaia.

You can get the boat in Praia dos Anjos (Angels Beach) and it costs around 70 reais per person (around US$ 20). Try to go as earlier as you can, because many boats take tourists to these places and near lunch time they can get really crowded.

The first stop is normally in Ilha do Farol (Lighthouse Island). The water is so clear and blue that really looks like a swimming pool. Praia do Farol (Lighthouse Beach) is very close to Ilha do Farol, and it’s considered the most perfect beach in Brazil. That’s because this beach is very preserved and to get there the boats need an authorization from the Brazilian Marine. Visitors can not take food or beverages to this beach and the limit time for each boat to stay there is around 30 minutes.

Ilha do Farol – Photo: Viaje Caju

During this trip we were so lucky! On our way to another stop, we saw a group of dolphins swimming along the boat. It was an amazing experience!

Dolphins swimming along the boat – Photo: Viaje Caju

The next stop was in Gruta Azul (Blue Cave). The boat stops there for a few minutes but we cannot swim there. I really don’t know why but anyway the waters were freezing and there were lots of jellyfish there. 

The other two stops were in Praia do Forno and Prainha do Pontal do Atalaia. All those stops are brief, something around 30 minutes each. But it’s a good way to visit many places in just one day and then you can decide what beach you want to visit again.

Praia do Forno – Photo: Viaje Caju

After this boat trip you can rest a little and finally see another beautiful sunset on a hill known as Mirante do Pontal do Atalaia. This is a must-see experience. Take a look!

Sunset – Mirante do Pontal do Atalaia – Photo: Viaje Caju

You can take this day to come back to one of the beaches mentioned above. But guess what? In my humble opinion I would come back to Prainha do Pontal do Atalaia.  This is definitively the most beautiful beach in Arraial. There are two ways to get there: by car (if you didn’t rent a car, you can use taxi – around 100 reais (US$ 30,00) round-trip, or by taxi-boat that leaves from Praia dos Anjos (around 40 reais per person (US$ 12,00) round-trip. If you get by car, you’ll see this beautiful 225-step wood stairs. You can take beautiful pictures from there. Visiting this beach is a must-see experience. You don’t need to take food or beverages. There are some improvised tents selling food and drinks, including amazing caipirinhas! The things are a little more expensive here because it’s a more distant beach.

Prainha do Pontal do Atalaia – Photo: Viaje Caju
Prainha do Pontal do Atalaia – Photo: Viaje Caju

Final Tips

  • not everyone speaks English but if you know Spanish that’s good enough;
  • try to stay there for 3 or 4 days;
  • if you didn’t rent a car, you’ll need to take the buses or taxis, because the beaches are far from one another;
  • in high season, try to visit the region during the week so the beaches will be less crowded;
  • enjoy every sunset you can!

That’s it! I hope you enjoy Arraial do Cabo as much as I do!

See you soon!

If you need more information, send us an email.

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