Exploring on your own in Fernando de Noronha will only get you so far; the best things to see and do tend to be through guided tours. Like most things on the island, the tours can get expensive yet when you factor in the experience of visiting untouched beaches, seeing pods of wild dolphins, and diving in marine life-abundant waters, the price is worth it. Here are the best tours to take in Fernando de Noronha.
Scuba diving tour
Whether you want to learn how to scuba dive or already are an experienced diver, Atlantis Divers do various courses and diving tours for all levels. The company follow strict safety protocol and comply with international standards of diving practices, making them one of the most reputable and professional diving schools in the region. During a diving tour, Atlantis Divers will provide the necessary equipment and take you out to the best places to swim among tropical fish, turtles, rays, and (friendly) sharks. For an extra cost, you can purchase underwater photos of your experience.
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Swim at Sancho Bay and dolphin-watching
Sancho Bay is among the three most beautiful beaches in Fernando de Noronha and among the top five in Brazil. This tour includes pick up from your hotel and boat cruise towards Sancho Bay while passing some of Fernando de Noronha‘s other striking landmarks such as Pedra do Leao, Two Brothers Peak, and Ponta da Sapata. The island has one of the highest concentration of dolphins in the world so seeing them during this trip is likely. You can also go snorkeling at the beaches although you will need to rent out the snorkeling equipment separately.
4×4 off-road tour of the island
Explore every corner of the island in one day with an eight-hour 4×4 island tour that takes you to all the island’s most famous landmarks. During this tour, you can visit the best beaches on the island such as Sancho Bay, Cacimba do Padres, and Bay of Pigs, including opportunities to snorkel among turtles, dozens of species of fish, and sharks. The tour also includes a stop at the Projeto Tamar, a turtle sanctuary where you can talk with a biologist about the conservation efforts on the island, and a visit to the small yet informative Shark Museum.
A sunset cruise
With dramatic rocky backdrops and sparkling turquoise sea, it’s hard to imagine a better place to watch a sunset than Fernando de Noronha. The island is part of the Fernando de Noronha Marine National Park that is protected by strict conservation laws. As a result, there is very little pollution there meaning the clean sky is a perfect canvas for the sunsets’ shades of oranges and pinks and idyllic for star-gazing too. This sunset tour will take you past some of the most famous beaches to find the perfect spot to see the sunset followed by a freshly cooked fish dinner.
Costa dos Mirantes hiking tour
This hike is a relatively easy 2.5 kilometer (1.5 miles) hike which is done in a small group as part of a guided four-hour trek. The trail follows the Costa dos Mirantes, the idyllic coastline of Fernando de Noronha peppered with scenic viewpoints and edged by colorful flowers and vibrant-green vegetation. The hike will pass by several places where you can look for dolphins and stop at the picturesque Sancho Bay where you can swim and snorkel.
The Emerald Tour
The Emerald Tour is a five-hour trip to visit the ‘Emerald of the Atlantic’, the name coined for Fernando de Noronha’s stunning coastline. The tour picks you up from your hotel and visits the island’s best beaches, including Cacimba do Padre, a beach famous for surfing and for the two rocky peaks known as the Two Brothers, the Bay of Pigs, and Bode beach. The bus will take you to each beach where you can spend some time swimming and snorkeling. It’s advisable to take food and drink with you on this tour as it’s hard to find shops en route or at the beaches.
All of these tours are done through tour agencies which can be booked in advance or when you are on the island. However, for personalized or private tours, it’s a good idea to ask the staff at your hotel as they will know local, independent guides who rely on word-of-mouth rather than advertising online. These independent guides are highly knowledgeable, often bilingual, and can tailor-make tours to suit your needs. For example, you can hire a guide to take you to Baia de Sueste which is famous for turtles and the guide can show you the best spots to swim to guarantee seeing one. They can also tell you local facts and stories that will make your excursion more exclusive and authentic. Culture Trip compiled a list of some of the best hotels in Fernando de Noronha which you can find here; ask the reception there for more details on local tours.
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