This Gorgeous Brazilian Beach Has A Deadly Secret

Tourists visiting the South American country of Brazil flock to its famous coasts for the likes of Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Beach. Ultimately, a trip to Brazil is a once-in-a-lifetime vacation you don't want to miss out on. One underrated destination is Recife, the capital of Pernambuco. Notably, the city, located on the Atlantic Ocean, hosted several games during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Recife is also home to Boa Viagem Beach, known for its stunning white sand and skyscraper scenery.


Reviewers on Tripadvisor rave about it, with one individual writing, "This beach has warm, greenish waters, providing not only a good dip in the sea but also an excellent background for the eyes." Unfortunately, Boa Viagem Beach has a notorious reputation. While you can encounter dangerous animals in the Amazon, the same can be said about Boa Viagem Beach's waters. If you visit, you'll come across large signs notifying the public of the presence of sharks.

In the early 1990s, Recife began having an unusually high number of shark attacks. According to CNN, between 1992 and 2013, 40% of attacks occurred at Boa Viagem Beach. Unsurprisingly, it's now considered one of the most dangerous beaches in the world. Having said that, there may be a reason for the large number of shark attacks. 


Why is Boa Viagem Beach shark-infested?

In 2013, Boa Viagem Beach made international headlines when a teenage tourist died after being bitten by a shark. The attack happened as the woman, who was drowning, received help from a lifeguard. In other words, the attack was unprovoked. When the FIFA World Cup came to Recife less than a year later, government officials ensured that tourists knew the dangers of swimming in Boa Viagem Beach by increasing warning signs and lifeguards. Nevertheless, according to a 2023 study published by the International Journal of Oceanography & Aquaculture (IJOAC), shark attacks have continued to plague Boa Viagem Beach as of 2023.


The study states that bull sharks and tiger sharks are involved in these incidents. As mentioned, these shark attacks only became the norm in the 1990s. It's believed that Port Suape, in Recife, is to blame for the shark dilemma. The port, built in the 1970s, may have negatively altered the shark's environment. The thought is that this eventually steered them toward the shore, leading to a rapid increase in shark attacks. However, this is only one theory out of many, and the study from IJOAC notes that more research is needed to understand why the sharks attack in the first place.

Activities in Boa Viagem Beach that don't involve swimming in the sea

Recife has made efforts to decrease the number of shark attacks in the city. An example is the creation of the "Shark Monitoring Program of Recife." Essentially, this program diverted sharks away from the beaches without harming them. With that in mind, swimming is not outwardly prohibited at Boa Viagem Beach, although it is recommended to swim in low-tide areas. Note that surfing is not allowed. However, it would be best for visitors to steer clear of Boa Viagem Beach's waters altogether; the warning signs are there for a reason.


Despite the shark attacks, Boa Viagem Beach should not be missed. Feel free to sunbathe and enjoy the beach's striking beauty. Moreover, reviewers on Tripadvisor advise visitors to roam the surrounding neighborhood. Minutes away from the beach is Boa Viagem Square. It appears Boa Viagem Beach has made the best out of a bad situation, as you will find popular shark-themed souvenirs for sale. Tourists can also purchase locally-made goods.

Less than 10 minutes away from the beach is Shopping Recife. The upscale mall has countless stores, eateries, and a movie theater. Of course, if you visit Boa Viagem Beach, you must stay at a hotel overlooking the ocean. One option is Transamérica Prestige Beach Class. The four-star establishment offers complimentary breakfast and has a gorgeous pool. You can find prices under $100 per night depending on when you visit. You can make a reservation online.