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The Best Kitesurfing Spots in Brazil

by Octavia Drughi

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Samba, carnivals, football (soccer), capoeira, the Amazon…there are many things that come to mind when thinking of Brazil. But the world’s fifth-largest country is also chock-full of kitespots.

Famous for its picturesque lagoons, powerful South Atlantic swells, epic downwinders, and the eight months of reliable winds per year, this South American paradise is a kitesurfing mecca for both beginners and pros.

With a huge coastline counting 7,491km (4,655mi), how do you decide where to go kitesurfing in Brazil? Some of the best kitespots on the planet can be found in the northern states of Rio Grande do Norte, Ceará, Piauí, and Maranhão. This is also where you’ll find Brazil’s famous downwinders, which allow you to ride from one spot to the other, parallel to the shore, on a kite safari. But there are idyllic spots in Rio de Janeiro and Santa Catarina too.

To help you plan an unforgettable trip, we’ve put together a list of the best kitesurfing spots in Brazil. Let’s have a closer look at them:


But first, when is the best time to go kitesurfing in Brazil?


Image credit: Oasis Kite Trip

The short answer is any time is a good time to go kitesurfing in Brazil.

However, the prime kitesurfing season runs from July through February. During this time of year, there’s an 80-95% probability of wind, with an average speed of 25-30 knots.

March, April, and May are the worst months for winds, but there’ll still be about 50-60% chance of wind. It’ll be less strong, though, about 10-20 knots.

The weather in Brazil is warm all year round, with the northeast region being the hottest. The water temperatures hover around 24-28°C (75-82°F) throughout the year.

Now let’s dive in! Or should I say “launch”?


Cumbuco, Ceará


Image credit: Oasis Kite Trip

Recommended for: All levels

With big sand dunes, lagoons, and turquoise sea, Cumbuco is the most popular kiting spot in Brazil and one of the world’s best kitesurfing destinations for beginners. It’s also one of the most accessible in the country. Only a 45-minute drive from the international airport in Fortaleza (FOR), it has a great infrastructure for both kiters and tourists.

A small fishing village turned kitesurfing mecca, Cumbuco is one of the first spots discovered by kiters in the Ceará region. Its coconut-fringed shores receive constant winds throughout the year, and are now brimming with kite schools. Furthermore, the sea and lagoons are a popular training ground for some of the world’s best kitesurfers.

» Join a kitesurfing camp in Cumbuco.

There are two main kitespots: the ocean and the lagoon.

Praia de Cumbuco is a 4km (2.5mi) stretch of white-sand beach, flat and wide. It’s very easy to launch here, and it won’t feel too crowded even during peak season. The sea is usually choppy, but tends to calm down in the afternoon when the wind drops a bit.

Close to the village of Cauipe, Lagoa de Cauipe is located 8km (5mi) north of Cumbuco. Separated from the ocean by a narrow strip of sand, it has perfectly flat water and is, therefore, ideal for those who are just starting out and for freestylers. Cauipe Lagoon is where you might just get to see some of the world’s best kitesurfers in action.

If you’re up for the challenge, you can embark on the famous downwinder from Cumbuco to Jericoacoara. The trip takes five days, downwinding about 30km (19mi) per day from one kitespot to the other.


Taiba, Ceará


Image credit: Lineup Pousada

Recommended for: All levels

Half an hour from Cumbuco, Taiba is a tiny fishing village surrounded by palm trees and white-sand dunes. Smaller and less crowded, it’s also more affordable than its popular neighbor.

With the ocean on one side and the lagoon on the other, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to variety and styles.

Praia de Taiba is a great place to go if you wish to perfect your wave riding technique. This is one of the best wave spots in Northern Brazil, with waves up to 3m (10ft).

Only 10 minutes from the village, Lagoa de Taiba is an excellent spot for beginners and freestyle addicts, thanks to its flat and shallow water. Here, you might also get to ride alongside some of the world’s best kiters.

You can ride downwind from Taiba to Paracuru. The trip takes 2-3 hours, depending on your level.


Paracuru, Ceará


Image credit: Surf Pousada 360

Recommended for: All levels

A one-hour-and-45-minute drive northwest of Fortaleza, Paracuru is a definite stop on the kitesurfing itinerary of Brazil.

East of Paracuru, Quebramar is one of the best combinations of flat water and waves in the entire country. At low and mid tide, several reefs emerge, creating a lagoon that’s perfectly flat and ideal for freestylers and beginners. Out of the lagoon, there’s a reef break that produces waves up to 1.5m (5ft).

At the mouth of the River Curu, there’s a great flat-water spot surrounded by a long white-sand beach. However, kiting here is restricted to certain times of the day.

For a truly epic experience, take the downwinder from Paracuru to Lagoinha. The trip will take you along some of the wildest beaches and sand dunes in this part of the country.


Ilha do Guajiru, Ceará


Recommended for: All levels

A two-hour drive from Fortaleza, in the Itarema municipality, Ilha do Guajiru is the largest lagoon in Northern Brazil. Separated from the ocean by a 4km (2.5mi) long and 500m (1,600ft) wide strip of sand, it is surrounded by palm trees and white sand dunes.

With numerous accommodation options right beside the lagoon and strong, consistent winds for minimum eight months of the year, Guajiru is an up-and-coming kiting destination worthy of your bucket list.

There are several spots to choose from on the lagoon, mostly flat water but also some occasional waves depending on the tide.


Préa, Ceará


Image credit: Sunset Kiteboarding

Recommended for: Intermediate and advanced kiters

With strong winds and laid-back vibes, Préa is a 4.5-hour drive from Fortaleza and 13km south of the popular kiting spot Jericoacoara. It’s also easier to access than its more famous neighbor.

Praia do Preá is a 15km (9mi) stretch of beach with constant winds. With a low tide, the water is flat. With a rising tide, waves between 1 and 2 meters (3-6.5ft) emerge. However, the water is usually choppy.

Although you can find conditions for all levels, the wind is generally strong. Therefore, Préa is not a very friendly place for beginners. You should be comfortable with small kite sizes and choppy water.

You can catch a downwinder from Preá all the way to Jericoacoara, and you ride some nice waves on the way.


Jericoacoara, Ceará


Image credit: Lov2KiteBrasil

Recommended for: All levels

A remote sandy village with a unique vibe and an end-of-the-world feel, Jericoacoara is one of the most famous kitesurfing spots in Brazil. Jeri for short, the place was discovered by windsurfers in the ‘80s and has since gained a reputation as one of the best kitespots on the planet.

Isolated in the Jericoacora National Park, this enchanting village is equipped with bars, restaurants, and kitesurfing camps. In short, anything you might want from a kitesurfing holiday minus the vibrant nightlife.

Although you can find conditions for all levels of kiters, winds over 35 knots are frequent. Therefore, Jeri is not the best place to learn.

» Join a kitesurfing camp in Jericoacoara.

The main beach at Jericoacoara is reserved for windsurfers, but you’ll find Duna por do sol (Sunset dune) at the outskirts of the village. This is also the starting point for the spectacular downwind trips from Jeri to Guriú, Tatajuba, or Camocim.

West of Jeri, Lagoa de Guriú is a fantastic flat-water spot that’s ideal for freestyle, as well as for those that are just starting out or wish to perfect their tricks.


Tatajuba, Ceará


Recommended for: All levels

West of Jericoacora, Tatajuba is a small fishing village near the mouth of the river Tucunduba, surrounded by a large dune park.

The main kiting spot lies at the mouth of the River Tucunduba. With a medium to high tide, you’ll find a lagoon with sections of flat water as well as chop. Where the river meets the sea, there’s a nice wave spot with waves as high as 2m (6.5ft).

In the middle of the dune park, only 4km (2.5mi) from Tatajuba, Lagoa da Torta is a good option when the wind is too strong at the river mouth. However, the wind is gustier here.

You can ride downwind from Tatajuba to Camocim (16km/10mi).


Barra Grande, Piauí


Image credit: Ana Raquel S. Hernandes

Recommended for: All levels

An 8-hour drive from Fortaleza, Barra Grande is an up-and-coming kiting destination.

Sure, getting there can be a drag, but it’s all worth the effort. With soft-sand beaches and flat-water lagoons, incredible scenic beauty, constant winds, authentic vibes, and a charming community, it’s one of the trendiest kitesurfing destinations in Brazil. Barra Grande is great for beginners and entertaining enough for pros.

You’ll find a variety of kitespots at Barra Grande: Praia de Barra Grande, Lagoa de Barrinha, Lagoa de Mangue, and La Boca offer something for all levels, from beginners to pros, and from freestyle to wave kiting.

If you’ve never ridden downwind before, this is the place to start. You can take the short downwinder from Barra Grande to the Macapà Lagoon, which is only 2km (1.2mi) long.


Atins, Maranhão


Image credit: Vila Guara

Recommended for: All levels

In Maranhão, Atins is a hidden paradise and perhaps the most scenic kitespot in Brazil. This small fishing village in the delta of the River Preguiças has managed to preserve its authentic charm. Located at the edge of the Lençois Maranhenses National Park, one of Brazil’s largest protected dune and lagoon ecosystems, it is an emerging kitesurfing hotspot and a flat-water paradise.

At low tide, sandbanks emerge, creating seemingly endless turquoise lagoons. Depending on the season, there can be up to 8,000 small lagoons. Their flat water is ideal for beginners and freestylers, and you’ll need a 4x4 to get around.

Atins is one of the most versatile kiting spots in Brazil. Besides the many lagoons, you’ll also find waves where the ocean meets the sandbanks. With a rising tide, the water tends to get choppy.

There are numerous options for downwind trips to the many deserted beaches in the area. A popular trip is the downwinder from Atins to Rio Negro (15km/9mi).


Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro


Recommended for: Intermediate and advanced kiters

Just outside of Rio de Janeiro, Barra da Tijuca is a 20km (12.5mi) stretch of beach that regularly hosts national kitesurfing championships. This is a rather technical wave spot, with waves up to 2m (6.5ft).

Due to its proximity to Rio, the beach is packed during summer weekends. But when stronger winds hit and bigger waves roll in, the beach empties and offers and amazing nine-kilometer (5.5mi) downwinder.


Araruama Lake, Rio de Janeiro


Image credit: AKS Kite School

Recommended for: All levels

Two-and-a-half hours from Rio, Araruama is quite a well-kept secret. Getting there is no easy feat, and local knowledge is required to navigate the last length of unmarked roads. The flat-water lagoon with waist-deep water is considered the best freestyle spot outside of Northern Brazil.

Even when the wind is up the water stays smooth. Araruama is a preferred training spot for top-level kiters, but there are usually no more than a handful of kiters out on the lagoon.


Campeche, Santa Catarina


Recommended for: Intermediate and advanced kiters

On the Florianopolis Peninsula, Campeche also goes by the name of C-Bay. This popular wave riding spot is often compared to South Africa’s Jeffrey’s Bay (J-Bay), which should give you a picture of just how great and challenging the place is.

C-Bay is one of the best wave spots in Brazil, offering the change to kite on some splendid barreling waves. There are both surfers and kitesurfers in the water, so please be respectful of the crowd. Luckily, there are plenty of waves to be had for everyone, so it doesn’t feel too crowded.

*Cover image credit: Kariri Beach Hotel

Whether you’re a flat water lover or you like challenging yourself on the waves, join an intermediate kitesurfing camp in Brazil and take your skills to new heights!

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