Haunting and huge, pinkish colored dunes greet turquoise colored waves at Canoa Quebrada. The northeastern Brazilian coast is unrivaled when it comes to its beaches and Canoa Quebrada is no exception. Named in the latest edition of “Moon Handbooks-Brazil” (December 2011) as one of Brazil’s “hippest beaches,” author Michael Sommers describes Canoa Quebrada as being “cosmopolitan without losing (its) laid back groove.”
Canoa Quebrada is located in the state of Ceara and the municipality of Aracati. The coastline of Ceara is especially noted for its blue-green ocean waters. The native population of Ceara regards this beach as one of their favorites for many reasons, not the least of which is its beach weather every day. This semi-arid region maintains a daytime temperature range between 27 C (81 F) and 35 C (95 F). The low at night is routinely in the 20 C (65 F) range. It is always windy and the humidity is low. So the climate is very pleasant.
This beach is located just two hours east of Fortaleza on what is known as the Rising Sun Coast. The small village where the main beach, Praia de Canoa Quebrada, is found is called Estevao. This part of Brazil’s coast was discovered quite by accident in the late 1600’s when Portuguese sailors ran aground due to a sinking boat. The name Canoa Quebrada translates from Portuguese to English as “broken canoe.”
Estevao was a small fishing village and remained virtually unchanged until the 1960’s when the hippies from North America re-discovered this paradise. Their “peace-loving, easy going” nature still lingers in the ocean breezes of today. The permanent population now is a multi-cultural blend. Many visitors from all over the world have come to this coastal village and decided to call this paradise home.
While the dramatic vistas and perfect year round weather do entice people to stay forever, there are certainly other selling points. Small town life has the added benefit of small town costs. Living here is not beyond the realm of possibility for expats seeking a luxurious lifestyle on a budget.
The influence of expats and native Brazilians can be seen in both the daytime and nighttime activities as well as with the local art scene and cuisine. Many expats have settled at Canoa Quebrada with the idea of spending relaxing days and nights with no work obligations but they found that the local economy and opportunity was ripe for entrepreneurial pursuits.
You can start your day with any of a myriad of adventures. As you move away from the calm waters of Praia de Canoa Quebrada, you will find:
- Fantastic kite surfing and windsurfing waves to challenge the best of the best
- Off road trekking in the dune by horseback or dune buggy can take you several kilometers above sea level putting the steepest roller coasters to shame
- Sand boarding has been around since the 1970’s and the dunes here are always numbered among the top ten places in the world to partake of this sport
- Kick back and let the sails of a jangada (native fishing boat) parallel this stunning coastline
- Still have some energy left, hike up Duna Por Do Sol to watch the sunset where it is said that when couples view the sunset from this site, they end up married
- You are wondering about nightlife-plenty of great restaurants and bars can be found along the cobblestoned main street called Broadway (yes, named for the famous Broadway in New York City)
- Pick almost any restaurant along Broadway and the chef will fix the catch of the day in any manner you prefer or let the cuisine speak for itself
Your “day” in Canoa Quebrada ends about 4:00 a.m. Catch a few hours of sleep, because tomorrow will be an entirely new day at the beach.