Guarujá is a municipality in São Paulo state, Brazil. One of the busiest of São Paulo's beaches (Paulista Coast), 87 kilometres from the capital, Guarujá is a town that is devoted to tourism and has dozens of beaches that stretch along its avenues and urban zones, or are to be found in less accessible locations. In the central area, the blue waters of the beaches of Pitangueiras and Astúrias have great appeal to the tourists. Amongst the most popular spots are the beaches of Enseada and Casado. On the open sea and not good for bathing, the Tombo beach is excellent for surfers, in contrast with tranquility of Guaiúba, Prainha Branca and Iporanga where the fertile vegetation is enhanced by a waterfall and a freshwater swimming pool. Guarujá also has relics from history such as the Barra Grande Fortress built in the 16th century, the Forte Velho just 8 km from the centre and the Armação das Baleias, the first industrial plant set up in the state for the extraction of whale oil.
From Sao Paulo
- By air - Arriving the airports in Sao Paulo (Congonhas / CGH) or (Guarulhos / GRU), packtours can arrange convenient TAXI service to Guaruja, it may take slightly more than one hour to go.
- By bus - Take a taxi or the subway to Jabaquara Bus Station. There you can take a bus directly to Guarujá. Estimated travel time: 1 hour and 20 minutes. More information: 11 50113421.
- By car - From São Paulo, first it catches the Anchieta Highway (SP-160) until the city of Cubatão. There it has a bifurcation that it allows to follow for the Cônego Domenico Rangoni Highway(old Piaçagüera Highway) until Guarujá. Alternatively, it is possible to catch this bifurcation from the Highway of the Immigrants (SP-150), but it takes a little longer.
A good way to move around to not-so-close places. They are not very expensive and drivers are mostly friendly, although small cheats are not uncommon. To avoid it, after getting into a taxi, check if the taximeter has been started . If not, ask the taxi driver to do so.
Buses are a cheap and nice way to get around by day although by night they are more scarce. The fare is payed on cash to a controller or the driver only inside the bus, by passing through a roulette. There are no tickets. Keep an eye out for pickpockets when the bus is crowded. Many people get still wet from the sea into the bus, so have a good look if your seat is dry before you sit. Check bus routes to the beaches on the beach section below. Bus n.81 goes to all the beaches.
Bicycles are by far the best way to move around the town, but unfortunately there are not many places where you can rent one (but plenty where you can buy). It's not allowed to ride on most of the beaches during the day. Better safe than sorry: buy a lock as well.
Beaches are the main reason to go to Guarujá. But be aware of the Brazilian beach culture: unlike many foreigners might think, there is no topless in the beaches, but girls can wear tiny string bikinis (fio dental), but it doesn't mean they're exhibitionists. For most of them, it's highly offensive to stare. If you don't want a sunburn and you are typically white, get a strong sunblock for yourself.
- Enseada. This huge beach is the most popular and common destination for the occasional tourist. Kiosks selling coconuts, beer and great finger food can be found all over. Although crowded in the summer, it's not as crowded as Pitangueiras. It also has a rich nightlife that can make traffic chaotic during the high season. Bus number: 11,17,19,23,55,77 and 81
- Pitangueiras. One of the most popular beaches in Guarujá. Overcrowded in summer mornings, Pitangueiras can be better appreciated with a barefoot walk on its sands in a warm afternoon. Surfers are all over the beach as well as vendors, who will try to sell you anything from sweetcorn to songs. When the waves are not huge, it's also suitable for bathing. Bus number: 1,15,25,26,27,39 and 81
- Astúrias. Pitangueiras' little sister, split only by a few rocks, Astúrias is a smaller and less crowded option for sunbathing and relaxing. Bus number: 1,15,26 and 81
- Tombo. Surfer's paradise and one of the most beautiful beaches in Guarujá, it may not be suitable for bathing. This beach is usually less crowded than the others, making it an excellent choice for the sunbather. Bus number: 1,15,25,26 and 81
- Tortugas. There are tours on kayak, ski and motor launch, as well as boats and the possibility of diving. The wide strip of sand is ideal for comfortable hikes.
- Pernambuco. The rich and famous all have a beach house along this sophisticated and calm beach. Bus number: 17,55,77 and 81
- Perequê. Traditional beach with authentic fisherman's villages. One can appreciate just-caught fresh fish and seafood in the many restaurants while watching the come and go of the villagers. Bus number: 17,55,77 and 81
- Acqua Mundo Theme Park - Avenida Miguel Stéfano, 2001, Enseada Beach. The biggest aquarium in South America, it has more than 700 species of aquatic animals.
- Barra Grande Fortress - The fortress was built by the colonizers in 1584. In there we can see panels of Manabu Mabe’s. It is accessed by the Santa Cruz dos Navegantes road, or by boat, from the Ponte dos Práticos (Pilot’s Bridge).
- Surf! Guarujá hasn't the best waves around, but they are good enough for a great surf session. Each beach offers its own style of wave, so whether you are a newbie or an expert, you will sure find what you are looking for. At Pitangueiras beach you can find a School of Surf (to the southwest, close to the rocks) where you can take some classes or just rent a board. More informations: 013 33821827 or 013 97882558.
- Every weekend and during the holidays local artisans gather on the sidewalk somewhere around the middle of Pitangueiras Beach to sell some handicrafts. Some bargain is allowed, so practice your portuguese numbers before you go.
Not only seafood but many other cuisines can be found in Guarujá. Barbecue restaurants are a nice option after a whole day of walking on the sands (but never before swimming). Italian cuisine is popular in the Sao Paulo State and is well represented in Guarujá. Japanese and Arabian cuisine will add to the vastness of culinary options.
Besides restaurants, vendors are everywhere selling coconut, sweetcorn, sandwiches, ice cream, etc. Kiosks are also easily found on the main beaches where you can try the excellent fresh and clean fried fish, crabs and shrimps.
- Disk Pizza - R. Mário Ribeiro, 1088, Pitangueiras, Phone: 33551388/ 33552667 - Not really a restaurant, just call then and they will deliver a nice and warm Pizza.
- Simbad - R. Mário Ribeiro, 1469, Pitangueiras, Phone: 33865295 - Arabian. Cheap and delicious.
- Tombo Pizzas e Esfihas - Estr. Alexandre Migues Rodrigues, 739, Tombo - Phone: 33546099/ 33546160. Pizzas and Arabian snacks.
- Avelino's - Av. Mal Deodoro da Fonseca, 1771, Pitangueiras, Phone: 33558360 - Seafood. One of the most crowded places in the summer, right in front of the beach.
- Monte Carlo - Av. Marechal Rondon, 742, Astúrias, Phone: 33861669 - Affordable seafood served in great style.
- Churrascaria Santa Carne Grill - Av. D. Pedro I, 1955, Enseada, Phone: 33518964 / 33516943 -Brazilian barbecue, all-you-can-eat.
- Pitangueiras Express Grill - R. Mário Ribeiro, 551, Pitangueiras, Phone: 33554346 - Brazilian barbecue, all-you-can-eat. Very busy at noon.
- Tokyo - Praia do Tombo, 450, Phone: 33544324 - Japanese cuisine.
- Dalmo Barbaro - Av. Miguel Estefano, 4710, Enseada, Phone: 33519298 - Traditional local seafood. One of the most popular restaurants in all the Paulista coast. Worth-visiting. Enjoy the food while admiring the sea view.
- Il Faro - R. Iracema, 38, Enseada, Phone: 33519305 - Authentic and pricey Italian food.
- Rufino's Restaurante - Av. Miguel Stéfano, 4795, Enseada - 33515771. Sophisticated seafood restaurant.
- Tahiti - Av. Mal. Deodoro da Fonseca, 367 , Pitangueiras - A restaurant during the day, a happy and young bar during the night, in front of the beach. Good appetizers.
- Johnny - Estrada de Pernambuco, 353, Pernambuco - Nice pricey bar.
- Barbirott's Bar - Av. Gal. Rondon, n/n, Astúrias - Videokê bar. English songs available.
- Barril - Rua Rio de Janeiro, 280, Pitangueiras - Live music. Jazz on Saturdays after 21:00.
- Guaruça Praia Bar - Rua Avedis Simonian, 1380, Tombo - Spacious young bar. Live music on Fridays and Saturdays.
- Pousada Canto do Forte - R. Horácio G. Barreiro, 1232, Tombo - Phone: 33542860/ 33542117 Email: [email protected]
- Pousada das Pitangueiras - Praça Faria Lima, 125, Pitangueiras - Phone: 33869904 Email:[email protected]
- Sobre as Ondas Hotel - Av. Gen. Rondon, 30, Pitangueiras - Phone: 33871273 Email: [email protected] - Great hotel with good value for money. Right on the rocks that split Pitangueiras and Asturias. Astonishing view of the open sea and tasty seafood served in the restaurant.
- Guarujá Inn Hotel - Av. da Saudade, 170, Enseada - Phone: 33559012/ 33559191 Email: [email protected]
- Hotel Costa Classique - Av. Miguel Stéfano, 601, Enseada - Phone: 33554767 Email: [email protected]
- Casa Grande Hotel Resort e Spa - Av. Miguel Stéfano, 1001, Enseada - Phone: 33894000 Email: [email protected]
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