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Travel Consultant, Tom Maker, recently spent a month living in Rio de Janeiro and some of his favorite weekend getaways were to Paraty, Ilha Grande & Buzios. In the 4th and final part of this 4 part blog series, Tom takes us to the best coastal cities of Brazil, Cabo Frio & Arraial do Cabo.

1: Paraty – A Weekend in Paraty

2: Ilha Grande – A Little Taste of Parade

3: The Best of Buzios: Brazil’s Beautiful Coast

Cabo Frio

Simply positioned between sand dunes, lagoons, and the Atlantic, Cabo Frio is Brazil’s seventh-oldest city. Its historic charm attracts weekenders from Rio, as you won’t find many tourists here! The refreshingly cold water invites families, couples, and independent travelers to spend their afternoons sunbathing at one of the nearby beaches. By night, the restaurants, street markets, and bars open their arms to sunkissed visitors, searching for food, goodies, and a delicious drink.

The Best Coastal Cities: Cabo Frio & Arrial do Cabo

The laid-back beach town of Cabo Frio is charming, but most hours are spent on the white sand beaches. Head to the shell-shaped Praia das Conchas, a favorite among the locals, where crystal-clear water awaits you. Partake in any of the various watersport activities here, such as surfing, snorkeling, or diving. For picturesque photo opportunities, walk to Praia do Forte, and when low tide commences venture to Ilha do Japones for a quieter, more peaceful beach.

Read more >> 6 Best Northeast Brazil Beaches

Arraial do Cabo

Cabo Frio is known as the livelier city, but Arraial do Cabo gleams with white sand dunes and gorgeous beaches, offering visitors a relaxing time without half of the touristy fuss. Only a 15-minute drive from Cabo Frio, you can find yourself in a perfect, zen-infused atmosphere. Lay out your favorite beach towel, and unwind as the gentle waves soothe you into an afternoon nap.

The Best Coastal Cities: Cabo Frio & Arrial do Cabo

In Arraial do Cabo, some beaches are only 15 minutes away from the downtown bus station, while others require you to take a quick boat ride. If a boat ride suits you well, opt for a Schooner Cruise. Schooner Cruises are perfect for visitors wishing to see as many beaches as possible. Depart from Praia dos Anjos, and travel around the surrounding beaches and islands in half a days time. As you sail across the bright-green waters and past the encompassing sand dunes, you will become a true “islander.”

Second to Schooner Cruises, is the love for scuba diving and snorkeling. This region is recognized for its incredible deep sea diving. Head to any of the nearby beaches, and dip far below sea level with an expert instructor. Don’t forget to wave hello to the beautifully diverse sea creatures living underneath the water. If you’re lucky, you might even get the chance to observe humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae), whose migration routes pass directly offshore.

The Best Coastal Cities: Cabo Frio & Arrial do Cabo

Read more >> Brazil Beach Resorts

Getting There

Bus: It’s easy to get to Arraial do Cabo and Cabo Frio from Rio’s main ‘Novo Rio’ bus terminal, with frequent departures to both destinations. Company “1001” is your best option for bus transfer. The buses interiors are kept spotless, and the routes that they take to the islands are scenic and effortless.

Private Transfer: If you would like to arrange a private transfer from Rio to your desired destination, just ask! Private transfers, along with an English speaking guide are easily arranged. Any of our expert travel consultants would be happy to help accommodate your transportation needs.

The Best Coastal Cities: Cabo Frio & Arrial do Cabo

Thomas Maker

Tom was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. He has always wanted to travel and experience new places, especially those that make his mother a little nervous. He studied international communications & anthropology at the university, taking time off to travel throughout. He has traveled around Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, the US, Canada, and South America. Tom was so infatuated with the beautiful chaos that is South America, that he came for a holiday and decided that he wasn’t ready to leave – with so much more exploring to do and things to learn. He currently lives in beautiful Buenos Aires. His favorite thing about traveling is the way that different places make you feel; the excitement and confusion of visiting somewhere new, and the warm, homely, fuzzy feeling you get when you are somewhere that you know. Tom's other passions include music, food (mostly eating) and the outdoors. His highlights of South America (so far) include the Uyuni Salt Flats in Bolivia, the Caribbean Coast in Colombia, Central Argentina, and the Uruguayan Coast.

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