Fernando de Noronha Brazil
Fernando de Noronha Island
WHERE TO STAY
There are various choices of where to stay on
the island of Fernando de Noronha. All are tipically modest. In
all there are 70 inns, classified according to their facilities
and touristic infrastructure, and a small hotel. Reservations should
be made early, especially for the months of January, February, July
and December, as well as for longer holidays.
Inn is one of the 5 best equipped inns of the island. Other choices
may be found in GUIA 4 RODAS and similar magazines.
The inns on the island function as boarding houses
(breakfast, lunch and dinner), or only with breakfast, charging
per night and per person. There is no limit imposed on the length
of time a visitor may stay on the island, although this is tied
into the Environmental Preservation Tax. This tax, paid upon arrival,
progressively increases with the length of the visit.
Uniquely, all of the inns of the island are private
residences more or less well modified for this type of service,
similar to "Bed and Breakfast" accomodations, but offering
all 3 meals. This family atmosphere is one of the most distinctive
factors of the tourists' stay, making them feel as though they were
in their own beach house.
TOURS AND ACTIVITIES
This unique contact with primeval nature makes
for unforgettable moments of perfect communion with the environment.
The various opportunities for land and sea tours, including underwater
activities, attract a large number of Brazilian and foreign tourists.
There are many beaches to choose from on the island.
Some are better adapted to diving, others to swimming, contemplation,
surfing, etc. In general, the beaches found on the protected side
of the main island are ideal for diving and swimming during the
months of April through November, due to the extremely calm sea.
During the rest of the year, the changing conditions of the sea
favor the sport of surfing, especially during January and February.
Below are some important suggestions for your future visit:
Located in the extreme northeast of the main island, ideal for contemplation
and diving. It offers a spectacular view of the smaller islands.
Here is found the Cultural Center of the Archipelago, which offers
courses in beginning art for children. The name Air France comes
from the use of this area as a base for transatlantic flights made
by Air France during the 1930's.
This is where the tourist and supply ships dock. There is a small
sand beach with calm waters. It is noted for the beautiful sunsets
and the seabirds diving for food. During the months of December,
January and February heavy waves (up to 13 feet) make it ideal for
At the historic Vila dos Remedios, Cachorro Beach is alternately
covered with sand or pebbles, depending on the season of the year,
due to the tidal movements. It too is used for surfing.
Next to Cachorro Beach, shaped like a small bay. It may be reached
from either Cachorro Beach or Conceicao Beach by means of a short
and easy path.
One of the more beautiful and longer beaches on the archipelago,
it is the most popular with both islanders and tourists. It is ideal
for surfing (between December and February), for skin diving (from
March to November), for swimming or merely contemplation. It is
worth a visit just to view the sunset. There is a drink stand (BARBARIDADE)
that is open daily.
Near the old US satelite tracking station, the sea has the same
characteristics as Conceicao Beach except that the bottom is predominately
coral. Special care should be exercised when swimming during the
months of December through February due to the strong underwater
currents. The drink stand Mirante located on a high point, keeps
an irregular schedule.
Americano/Bode/Cacimba do Padre
Three adjacent beaches with access by land or by sea during low
tide, ideal for the sport of surfing between December and February
as well as for swimming during the rest of the year. On Bode Beach
are nice shady spots under leafy trees, where one can relax or rest.
One of the best of Fernando de Noronha, with access from Cacimba
do Padre Beach principally at low tide. Consists of marvelous views.
Located opposite the Morro dos Dois Irmaos, (two small islands very
near the beach), it has natural pools and variegated colored waters.
Just beyond Porcos Bay is found Sancho Bay, another notable beach
among so many. Surrounded by a natural wall, it may be reached by
a ladder fastened to the rock, or by a short trail (a local guide
is recommended) or by sea. A beach of unforgettable beauty where
one may find the nests of aquatic birds and enjoy excellent dives
in the bay. For the tour boats, it is a stopping point for swimming
An area of maximum preservation, the only access is a pathway to
the cliff's edge. It is an observation point for the activity of
the dolphins, principally about 6 am. It is within the National
Marine Park, and in order to preserve the area for the dolphins,
access by sea is prohibited.
Located on the southeast side of the island, many think it has the
most beautiful scenery of the Archipelago. The principal area for
the sea turtles to lay their eggs, it has among other attractions
its size (greatest length), pools and the esguichos, geyser-like
fountains that result from the tremendous build-up of pressure as
the high tide brings water in under the coral and consequently forces
it through small openings. Best months: December through March.
Rocky, with access over the rocks, it has an excellent pool reachable
at low tide. From the lookout point there is an excellent view of
Leao Bay and surroundings.
The calmest beach of Fernando de Noronha due to its form of an enclosed
bay, it permits diving and swimming at any tide. Beautiful view
and rich marine life. Next to it is the only islander mangrove of
the South Atlantic, with its distinctive wildlife. Diving is restricted
in some parts of the bay to protect the coral reefs. Drinks and
snacks are served during the day (Tartarugao Lunches).
Virtually a natural aquarium, diving in its pools is possible at
low tide. Extremely shallow (averaging 30 inches), it displays an
impressive variety of marine life. Access by a trail beginning at
the Vila do Trinta, or by car using the road near the airport. Located
within the National Marine Park, the number of visitors is limited
to thirty per day.
Near the port, on the other side, it has a lovely view, and is used
by the islanders for fishing.
A large group of pools, closed to visitors, may be seen from a look-out
point. Very near the port (on the opposite side) and to Caieira
Beach. Close for dive.
Various other activities are available to the
visitor on Fernando de Noronha. Keep in mind that, in general, the
tourist industry is very small, tending to a gradual improvement.
Ecological tourism is the natural calling of the
island. The unspoiled beauty, incomparable and unforgettable, makes
up for the occassional discomforts, contributing to the spirit of
adventure that spreads in the air.
On Fernado de Noronha two types of diving may be done: self-contained,
with air tanks, and free dives (skin diving). Spear fishing is entirely
prohibited. For self-contained divers there are 3 local firms which
basically offer two services: Beginning Dives and Experienced Dives.
Various boats, with an average capacity of 15 passengers, leave
daily at 9 am from the Port of Santo Antonio, for the smaller islands,
Sapata Point, and Dolphin Bay with a stop at Sancho Bay for swimming
and diving, returning normally about 1:30 pm. Some serve a seafood
meal on board.
Although some beaches are easily reached on foot, it is highly likely
that a rental buggy will be needed for travel around the island.
There are agencies which rent buggies ( LOCBUGGY, 36191142 for exemple
). For short trips there are taxis. This service is offered by NORTAX,
a cooperative of buggy owners.
Many places on the Archipelago remain unknown due to their lack
of access. Exotic beaches squeezed between cliffs, caves, hills,
etc., are excellent choices for walks. The best locations are within
the Marine Park, where the company of a Park Ranger is required
Avoid, if possible, visiting the Archipelago during
the peak tourist season, principally between December 15 and February
28. Due to the limit of 420 visitors established by the local Administration,
during this period the housing accomodations and flights are usually
filled. The ideal length for a visit is 7 days or longer, permitting
a better enjoyment of the Archipelago. The cost of the air fare
is spread over a longer
stay. Upon arrival the visitor is charged an Environmental Presevation
Tax established by the government.
The sun on Fernando de Noronha is always very
strong. Therefore don't forget to use an adequate sun-blocker to
protect your skin. The local electricity is 220 volts 60cycles,
available day and night. The water, supplied by rainwater, is always
rationed to avoid shortages. Communication with the island is supplied
by satellite with DDD/DDI service. The only local bank is a branch
of the Banco Real, connected to Sao Paulo by satellite and thus
able to take care of any transaction on line. No change cash by
The government of the archipelago maintains Radio
Golfinho a FM Stereo station on the frequency of 96.9 MHz, and 5
television channels (Globo, SBT, Manchete, Cultura de Sao Paulo
and Bandeirantes), using VHF channels 6, 7, 9, 11, and 13.
For the sail boats that visit the archipelago,
there is a small and as yet inadequate structure in the port which
includes bathrooms and showers. Each recreational boat as it arrives,
should communicate with the port authority by means of VHF Marine
channel 12 or 16 for instructions. Anchorage within the seawall
protected area is not permitted, so all boats must anchor outside.
The administration collects the Preservation Tax for both crew and
passengers as well as a docking fee.