Natal's Beaches information
Natal’s northern city beaches, Praia do Meio , Praia dos Artistas and Praia da Areia Preta , stretching 5km south from the Forte dos Reis Magos to Farol de Mãe Luiza lighthouse, are unattractive, not very clean urban beaches that get crowded at weekends and holidays. South of the lighthouse, the coast road Via Costeira continues 8km south to Ponta Negra, passing the calm Praia da Barreira d’Água , with its resort hotels.
Praia de Ponta Negra , at the far south end of the city, is the nicest beach in Natal – 3km long and full of surfers, sailing boats and beach bars, with the city's best selection of hotels, pousadas and restaurants in the streets behind. The surf here is consistent if small: you can rent boards from a few places for around R$10 per hour.
At the south end of the beach is the Morro da Careca , a spectacularly high sand dune with a steep face dropping straight into the sea. Access to the dune has been closed off to prevent further erosion and damage to the primary Atlantic rainforest that covers it.