A Weekend Warrior’s Guide to Buzios

Buzios Brazil - Buzios Brasil

In desperate need of an escape from all the dudes in Rio after the World Cup, a few friends and I headed east to the peninsula paradise they call Buzios.

Just a three hour bus ride from Rio, it’s the perfect getaway for Cariocas seeking refuge from the hustle and bustle of the big city.

Thanks to a well-publicized visit by Brigitte Bardot back in the early ’60s, Buzios has gone from a simple fishing village to a well-traveled vacation destination for weekend warriors like us.

We painted our faces with SPF-30 and stormed the sand like Normandy in search of fun in the sun.

With only a few days in town, here’s a step-by-step account on how we made the most of our time in Buzios. Follow this and I guarantee a swift victory over monotony.

STEP 1: Travel in Style

Buzios Travel Guide - Ostrich Pillow

The easiest way is to take a bus from Rio de Janeiro’s bus terminal (Rodoviaria). They run everyday, almost hourly, and it costs around R$46 ($21USD). You can also rent a car, but with the gas and fees, it wasn’t worth it for us.

If you’re not going from Rio de Janeiro to Buzios, check out this all-inclusive “How to get to Buzios” resource for help.

STEP 2: Find a Home Base

Buzios Travel Guide - Where to Stay in Buzios

We stayed at the El Misti Hostel where we got a private, 4-person room with in-suite bathroom for R$30 ($14USD) each. It was clean, comfortable and a short walk from downtown Buzios.

There are tons of hostels, hotels and pousadas in Buzios, so shop around for what works best for you.

STEP 3: Pop the Top

Buzios Travel Guide - Rent a Buggy

Rent a dune buggy. It’ll cost you around R$100 ($45USD) for the day and that includes the respect in the streets when you’re cruising around with the top down.

Side Note: All men should know how to drive a stick-shift. If you don’t now is the time to learn. If you don’t do it for the ladies (look how happy they are), do it for Paul Walker.

STEP 4: Never Settle

Buzios Travel Guide - Praia Azeda

With almost two dozen beaches around the peninsula, you should swim around before you get married. For example, are you more of the quiet sunbathing type who likes a little intimacy? If so, Praia Azeda is for you (above).

Or, would you like more action and activities with your seaside experience? If so, Praia de Geriba is your answer (below).

Buzios Travel Guide - Praia de Geriba

With the buggy, we went to six different beaches over the course of 24 hours, all within a few miles of each other.

STEp 5: Identify the Bar 

Buzios Travel Guide - Beach Bar

At all times, you should know where the closest bar, cart or guy with a cooler on the beach is. It won’t always be obvious who’s slinging the adult drinks, but stay focused and they will appear. Sometimes in the form of old fishing boats!

Remember, you’re on vacation and it’s up to you to prove it.

Buzios Travel Guide - Bars

Step 6: Enjoy the Sunset

Buzios Travel Guide - Sunset in Manguinhos

We were told that the best place to watch the sunset was at the pier on Manguinhos beach. When we arrived however, the scenery wasn’t particularly attractive after everything we’d seen. The beach and surrounding area looked like it was used mostly by fisherman.

That all changed when mother nature turned the lights down. We found a spot at the end of the pier and enjoyed the show. The fishing boats added the perfect contrast in the water and the colors could fill up a crayon box. Well played Manguinhos, well played.

Buzios Travel Guide -Sunset in Buzios

Step 7: Stay up Late

Buzios Travel Guide - Porto da Barra

Start with Porto da Barra in Manguinhos right after the sunset (above) with a nice view and a sweet setup.

From there, head back to downtown Buzios’ main street,  Rua das Pedras, to cruise the streets and enjoy the many bars and restaurants.

Buzios Travel Guide - Central Buzios

If you’re up for it, I’m told that Pacha Nightclub is as legit as it gets when it comes to mega parties in Buzios.

However, I opted for a nice whiskey, two ice cubes, good friends and a solid waterfront view to finish the evening.

Buzios Travel Guide - Beach Bars

This is how I Buzios. Any questions?

Buzios Travel Guide - Buzios Map

Above is a map of the peninsula of Buzios. All the yellow highlighted areas are beaches.

*El Misti Hostel photo was taken from El Misti’s website, I didn’t actually climb a tree and take that.

 

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19 Responses to A Weekend Warrior’s Guide to Buzios

  1. Hey Gareth this question isn’t related to this great article, but what do you think about a motorcycle adventure in South America, do you think it’s too dangerous compared to other countries. How would you go about doing it? Thank’s for any insight you provide, and keep the vids and blogs comin!

    • Gareth

      Hey Julio, I have known a few people who have traveled by car or motorcycle from the USA down to South America and from what I hear, the most dangerous areas to cross are in Central America (Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador). The most dangerous parts of South America (and Latin America in general) are around the borders. I don’t know how that compares to other parts of the world, but I assume that drug trafficking isn’t as popular elsewhere as it is down here. I would look into maybe Vietnam or other Asian countries, which are much safer. I was thinking of doing the same myself!

  2. Also quick question, what camera do you use to take those great, detailed pictures?

    • Gareth

      Thank you! I use a Canon 120 for everything. I also have a GoPro, but I only use that for adventure stuff (like the buggy photo).

  3. ahh… It all makes sense now. the locals all told me to go to Buzios and now I see why, looks incredible!
    Brad Bernard recently posted..Extreme India Challenge Rickshaw Run: Death Summons Us to the Sacred GangesMy Profile

  4. Love your travel guide especially the cozy atmosphere offered by Porto da Barra where you can just sit back, relax or have a chichat with your dearest friends. Thanks for sharing this Buzios! =P
    Cristy recently posted..Haven’t Experienced Much of an Enjoyable Campfire Meal? Here’s how to StartMy Profile

  5. I have many friends who have been to Buzios that say it is paradise! I need to get there soon.
    Adrienne @ AdrienneAway recently posted..Alessandra Ambrosio’s Jetsetting StyleMy Profile

  6. Dang! I hate that I didn’t get to Buzios. I heard it is like Acapulco was in the ’60s.
    Leah recently posted..5 European Cities to Visit during the FallMy Profile

    • Gareth

      I haven’t heard that comparison but it definitely makes sense. It’s so great now because it’s still relatively undiscovered to mass tourism, i.e. you can still escape people!

  7. Great photos! The ostrich hat is pretty funny

  8. Good article about an adventure of travels and excellent to read this kind of article.

  9. Stunning, simply stunning!
    And we wouldn’t find out about these places, unless someones in Brazil digs deep, explores and shares.
    Thanks a lot, it’s inspiring!

  10. Pacha Bar in brazil. :)

    We went to pacha two nights.
    One was the resident dj and other was dj Chuckie (Dutch house)
    One of my best club nights Iv been to. Crowd and music was on point.

    We booked a VIP table, best thing we done. We had our own area with own waiters. Drinks were on full flow. Fruit and food is also great.

    The VIP host Gabriel is an amazing person. Made this a great stag night to remember. Think he is the main person to book a table with.

    Third night we went to privilege , booked a VIP in this place. Now that’s not what you call VIP

    Had to wait one hour for our first bottles to arrive to the table. We had to make a compliant to the club manager to get some service. Even when we got service it was very poor. One waiter shared with a few tables.
    We were the highest spenders in all these clubs. Going in like we were in Vegas where no one else done this.

    I would go pacha all day compared to privilege. Even though privilege is a newer club. If you do go to privilege. VIP is a waste of time. Just get a normal pass and go crazy.

  11. I like to read your blog but never settle and stay up late is kind a too much for my beer belly :]
    Cheers

  12. Hello! Thank you for the great write up on Buzios! I am going for a wedding in a few short weeks and I am so excited!! I’m staying at the bride’s beach house in Cabofrio. Do you happen to know what the situation will be like getting to and from Buzios from Cabofrio? Should I rent a car for the week I’m there or rely on busses and taxis?
    Best!
    Ashley Marie

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