I recently visited the stunning island archipelago of 21 islands called Fernando de Noronha to take photos of its stunning beaches and landscapes. Fernando de Noronha is around 354 km offshore from the Brazilian coast in the Atlantic Ocean. Fernando de Noronoha’s rich waters are a very important breeding area for sharks, turtles, tunas and marine mammals. It also has a healthy population of dolphins and has abundant underwater species. For divers and snorkelers this is a paradise. Also for a photographer that would sound enough, but it also boasts absolutely stunning pristine tropical beaches, with amazing volcanic structures, which rise from the ocean floor some 4,000 m in depth. It is also a protected national park and has a restricted number of visitors each day in order to maintain this special environment.
The main island of Fernando de Noronha has a road system of around 11km running around it. Many of the roads are rather rough and require a off road buggy to get around. You feel like you are on a proper adventure at times. I definitely recommend you hire one as it makes taking photos at the times you want much much easier. Although there is a regular bus service on the island is you prefer, or if you have the time you can hike pretty easily.
There are so many stunning beaches on Fernando de Noronha to choose from, but for me I preferred Conceicao beach for its view of Morro do Pico (mountain) and its relaxed beach vibe and bar. Sancho Bay is probably the most idyllic paradise beach with amazing turquoise waters. I also really liked praia do bode for its view of the two brothers mountains that pop out off the sea. This is a great spot for sunset photos. There are also many viewpoints overlooking the bays to check out. Like the one at Baia dos Golfinhos. If you go just after sunrise you can see up to one thousand spinner dolphins returning from a nights fishing. They come back to the safety of this bay. If you want to take photo I recommend you take a long lens over 400mm in order to get any good shots. If you want to see the dolphins closer up you will have to take one of the boat trips round the island or charter a boat. The dolphins will probably follow the boat. Have both your wide angle lens and zoom close to hand, as at times you will see them jumping out of the water from a distance, and then all of a sudden they are right next to you boat.
Fernando de Noronha really is a gem, and I would say it certainly has to be on your Brazil itinerary. It is the perfect size for getting about. Its clean, safe, stunning, full of marine wildlife, stunning photo locations and I will definitely be going back again soon.