Pernambuco has a total of 187 kilometers of coastline, geographically divided in the North Litoral, the Metropolitan Region of Recife, and the South Litoral. Porto de Galinhas (or, chicken port) is located in the south region and is definitely a destination you cannot miss. Been elected more than ten times the best beach in Brazil, Porto de Galinhas is the most popular touristic destination in all the state of Pernambuco.
The first name of Porto de Galinhas was Porto Rico (or, "rich" port) because of the quantity of redwood- the first richness' findings in Brazil by the Portuguese colonies, back in the 16th century. As the battles with natives got increased, the region became "hostile" and for a long time occupied by them. In the 18th century, though, with the increase of slavery in Brazil, the beach started to be used as an illegal trading point. Despite this horrible past, Porto de Galinhas became a fantastic destination for tourism, happiness, and integration of people.
At Porto de Galinhas you can also do water sports, such as diving, windsurfing, surfing, paragliding, or simply sit at the beach and enjoy good food and drinks. Keep in mind that if you're interested in diving, it is mandatory to take a course beforehand, which usually takes one to two hours. So, try to schedule your arrival time at the beach early in the morning. Also, pay attention to the tide charts, because you can only do such sports while the sea level is high.
The local gastronomy is highly recommended, and you can find in the city center a wide variety of restaurants. The beaches in Pernambuco are full of services for a fair price. This means you are not going to be charged if you want to sit on the sunbeds - also the drinks and food prices are relatively low. So, once you relax, get ready to enjoy various types of food and beverages. By the way, I would sincerely recommend the boiled crab and caipirinha.
Unlike other beaches in Recife, Porto de Galinhas is wilder in a beautiful way. You'll not see buildings or avenues next to the sea, just small houses, and at some point, resorts. Also, the local economy runs around tourism and fishing, so you will probably see fishing villages while there.
Everything in Porto is very traditional, but as I said, very touristic as well. If you intend to stay in a fancy place, there are five-star hotels and resorts, but if you are looking for more reasonably priced places, to be in contact with local people, check the ''pousadas". Those offer a kind of accommodation between regular hostels and the hotels - by the way, this is very typical in Brazil.
To go to Porto de Galinhas, you have different options: The first one would be by bus. There are bus services that go straight from the Airport to Porto de Galinhas. It is the line 191, in which there's no air conditioning and no luggage rack. It costs around ten reais, but you should check the price before getting on it. Another option is a bus from Boa Viagem neighborhood to Porto de Galinhas, with the Line 195 "Opcional". This line also stops at the airport, has air conditioning and a luggage rack and costs around 15 reais. An alternative would be a taxi or Uber; the price is going to be around 150 reais.
Porto de Galinhas is probably my favorite beach in Pernambuco and I hope you enjoy your visit, as much I enjoyed writing this article. Have fun!
Like this story?
Get more! Subscribe to our monthly inspiration newsletter.