World Heritage Wonder: Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, Brazil

08 Mar

The "Two Brothers" hill - Morro Dois Irmãos, viewed from the Praia da Cacimba do Padre, FN.

Just like the AtlantisFernando de Noronha has caught the imagination of travelers for centuries and many urban myths are associated with this gloriously surreal island. With its powdery beaches, lush rolling greens and crystalline azure waters, Fernando de Noronha is a tropical paradise of sublime beauty that is steeped deep in mysticism and mystery. The archipelago – named after a 16th-century Portuguese nobleman who may never have actually set foot there – exists in the proud Brazilian imagination, as well as a beautiful group of a main island and several islets. Fernando de Noronha is, strictly speaking, an archipelago made up of one 11-square-mile chunk of volcanic rock and 20 smaller islands, three degrees south of the equator, 220 miles from Brazil’s north-eastern coast.

Discovered in 16th century, the eco-wonderland is big on conservation, thus traveling from mainland is expensive business. Fernando de Noronha has the best beaches in Brazil, as Guia Quatro Rodas Praias, Brazil’s ‘Beach Bible’, bestowed five starts to only four beaches in Brazil – and three of them are at Fernando de Noronha. One of the more popular ways to explore the island-mountain is by hiring a dune buggy [look at our photos here on the sides!], which is available easily for rent.

We would always start or days early, heading towards Lago dos Dois Irmãos, or walking down the cobblestone streets in Vila dos Remédios.

street in Vila dos Remédios

Main Church - Igreja da Conceição

In Atalaia Beach, we were able to snorkel with fishes and juvenile sharks, checking out the swarms of hawksbill and green turtles, and also, witness rare island species like iguanas. Other adventure seekers like us, engaged in underwater activities, diving and snorkeling to experience the prolific marine life including albacore, barracuda, snappers, cangulos (fish)… An upcoming post will offer more details about our encounters with the marine and wild lives from the archipelago 😮

Leão, Sancho and Porcos Bay are the best beaches in Fernando de Noronha and our personal favorite is Sancho Bay as the water changes color from crystal to turquoise to emerald and there is a huge reef wall around the beach making it popular among snorkelers. These will be subject of upcoming posts, since we’re still going through our pictures, often having to bring ourselves back to our present time…

Watching the sunset behind the "Morro Dois Irmãos" (Two Brothers)

Hiking along the beach coast - Praia do Cachorro, Praia do Meio, Praia da Conceição

One of the natural wonders found during our hiking adventures - native Atlantic/Rain Forest setting

Praia da Cacimba do Padre, well-known destination by surfers, and observers

Turquoise waters

Intriguing formations among the volcanic rocks

Fernando de Noronha’s claim to fame is its diverse and rich ecosystem. And while nature lovers throng to this eco-paradise, the volcanic island with its splendid marine life, dramatic rock formations and long lazy stretches of beaches is the perfect romantic destination as well… and we can vouche for that! 😮

Searching for marine fish and dolphins

hiking couple :o

hiking couple 😮


…finally, leaving you “curious for the posts to come“, a glimpse of what we found during our eco-friendly explorative adventures: 😮

[We still need to share our experiences with the Brazilian TAMAR Project (marine turtles) and with the Shark Museum (“Museu do Tubarão”)]. Imagine!!


Posted by on March 8, 2012 in ARCHIPELAGO, post a day


Tags: , , , , , ,

32 responses to “World Heritage Wonder: Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, Brazil

  1. ddivna

    April 26, 2012 at 6:20 am

    Thank you for visiting my blog! Your country is so beautiful it takes your breath away!


  2. Ayelet - All Colores

    March 24, 2012 at 5:44 am

    It looks like such a magical place! Can’t wait to read about your eco-friendly adventures 🙂


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 24, 2012 at 6:23 am

      thank you very much, Ayelet! I still need to write about our experiences searching marine life with the Navi Project, and a visit to the shark museum… A lot to talk about, still! Thanks for your I retest and good vibe! 😮


  3. andiperullo

    March 20, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    Such AMAZING pics, especially the last one! We honeymooned there and I’m posting about it next week. I definitely want to return to this ridiculously gorgeous place.


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 20, 2012 at 5:28 pm

      Thank you very much! Please keep me posted, sending the link to your post – I’d love to see it! The place is fantastic, you’re right! 😮 We are totally in love with the island/archipelago… Hopefully, we’ll be able to go back.. one day… one day… 😮


  4. dabawenyo life

    March 12, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    an adventure that everybody dreamed of… thanks for letting me see it too .. 🙂


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 12, 2012 at 10:03 pm

      Oh… you’re more than welcome! I hope you’re enjoying the other posts of this series… We came back with lots of photos, from the different activities – the navi ride, boat ride, hiking adventures, surfing observation… or simply appreciating the nature and outdoors settings! 😮 Thanks for stopping by and sharing your impressions!


      • dabawenyo life

        March 12, 2012 at 10:14 pm

        my pleasure! 🙂 ..I may not be able to come to that place but at least, I saw it already 😀 thanks to you..


        • 3rdCultureChildren

          March 12, 2012 at 11:14 pm

          good to know… We always try to share our travels &impressions… Glad you liked it!


  5. Pat Bean

    March 12, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Beautiful photos. My favorite were the Two Brothers’ sunset and that fantastic red-bloomed tree. Thanks for sharing.


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 12, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      Thanks, Pat! 😮


  6. Rick Daddario

    March 8, 2012 at 8:21 pm

    aloha 3rdCultureChildren – beautiful. i may have to revise my list of places i’d still consider visiting.


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 9:01 pm

      WOW! That’s a great compliment! 😮 Thanks for stopping by!


  7. Marcia Clarke

    March 8, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    Amazing views, and I really like that you included a bit of a history lesson too, very cool!


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 9:00 pm

      Thank you, Marcia! 😮 Lessons are always welcome!


  8. Cee Neuner

    March 8, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    Talk about beauty and diversity. Fabulous photos!!


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 7:02 pm

      Thank you very much, Cee! 😮


  9. Gilly Gee

    March 8, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    Yep, I’m curious to see the next episode!


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 5:14 pm

      Thank you, Gilly! 😮 The next one will likely be about the visit to the Marine Life Open Museum, which houses the Marine Turtle Project – Projeto Tartaruga Marinha [TAMAR].. Hope you enjoy and learn, as much as we did! 😮 Thanks again, for stopping by and commenting! Always a rich experience!


      • Gilly Gee

        March 8, 2012 at 5:43 pm

        Ah turtles! i’ve been to several turtle beaches on my travels but never seen any 😦


        • 3rdCultureChildren

          March 8, 2012 at 7:01 pm

          I just saw a green turtle, from the project, while snorkeling… but hadn’t rented a camera… 😦


  10. Cherise

    March 8, 2012 at 3:06 pm

    Breathtaking photos & exciting post … makes me want to book a diving trip there right now 🙂
    I can smell the ocean & hear the dolphins jumping!! Glad you two are having a great time together & seeing the world

    BTW, what camera are you using?


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 3:31 pm

      Hey Cherise – really glad your enjoyed the post… we’re still overwhelmed, we took a bunch of pics, left the kids here and went for a 3-day trip to the archipelago… It’s definitely the most beautiful beach I’ve seen… Simply amazing… still sorting pics for future posts/send to friends/family… We used two cameras: a smaller one, a Canon, PowerShot ELPH 100HS, and a less-light one 😮 – Nikon Sigma D70s, with 2 sets of lens, which we brought from Mozambique… getting closer to retirement… 😮 Much love from Recife, Mirandas.


  11. Madhu

    March 8, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Wow! Awesome place and equally awesome pics! Thanks for sharing


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 3:25 pm

      Thank you, Madhu! So glad you liked it! 😮


  12. cobbies69

    March 8, 2012 at 8:05 am

    Fabulous post and pictures to match, thanks for sharing….:)


    • 3rdCultureChildren

      March 8, 2012 at 8:17 am

      Thank you, Cobbies69, for checking it out! Always a pleasure to have good visitors! 😮



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