Praia da Pipa – Adventurous Brazilian Beach Towns Don't Come Any Better
Praia da Pipa, or just Pipa for short, is one of the finest beach towns along the sun-soaked north-east coast of Brazil. Year-round tropical sun, favourable winds and waves, cliffs, dunes, lagoons and wildlife as friendly as the locals make it a perfect escape to the sun most of the year. The town is just an hour from the city of Natal, the state capital of Rio Grande do Norte, and closer to West Africa than it is to the south of Brazil, making Pipa be within just 8 hours journey of Europe and the USA. This means that within 10 hours of leaving home, you could be on a beautiful Brazilian beach, surfing, kite-surfing or swimming with the friendly costero dolphins that make their home in the tropical waters of Praia Curral close to Pipa.
The town grew up as a tranquil north-eastern fishing village, whose miles of sandy beaches washed by turquoise waters and backed by colourful cliffs attracted hippies galore in the 60s and 70s. Pipa has retained its beach village charm, as well as its hippies, and now attracts people from all over the world. As with the rest of Rio Grande do Norte State, it is relaxed and friendly, full of bars and good restaurants to spend a few evening hours after a day of beach-based activities. With colourful fishing boats bobbing in the little harbour, it will come as no surprise to find that seafood is wonderful here.
Pipa can be as much fun in the daytime as it is at night. Boat trips at low-tide or a short beach walk take you to see the dolphins up close. Consistent swells and breaks make the area perfect for surfing and learning to surf. The Atlantic breezes that rush up the cliffs make kite-surfing and parasailing possible too, with courses for each if you are just beginning. Buggy and 4x4 trips take you to the dunes and lagoons around the area, with natural pools for snorkelling, sand-boarding slopes and mangrove forests for sunset kayaking at Tibau do Sul.
Many of these activities are tide and wind dependent, but all are available in Pipa 365 days a year, much like the sun, although there is some rain in the wet season. Praia da Pipa makes a great little break in the sun on its own, or part of a great longer break if you want to combine it with other classic beach towns in the north-east of Brazil such as Canoa Quebrada and Jericoacoara. Combining the three together make one of the best beach crawls on earth! This is a special Brazil Adventure Tour, done by 4x4 or even beach buggy.
Suitable Destination For: Those who like their sun, sea, sand with a little adventure, a little wildlife and a lot of activity.
Best Time to Visit: Praia da Pipa is hot and dry at most times of the year, although April to June is the wet season.
Essential Sights & Activities: The dunes; the cliffs; the dolphins at Praia Curral (also known as Dolphin Bay), the changing nature of the beaches with the incoming tide; natural pools. Pipa can also make the start of a Great Brazilian Beach Adventure trips all along the North-East Coast via Natal and all the way around to Canoa Quebrada, Fortaleza and Jericoacoara heading north-west.