Barra da Tijuca (Kite Point, Praia Pepe)

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Barra da Tijuca - Rio de Janeiro
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Barra da Tijuca is the longest beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with 18km/11mi of almost completely untouched stretches favored by surfers. It's calm on weekdays, and crazy on hot summer weekends from December to March. An extension of Barra da Tijuca Beach is called Praia do Pepê, a very trendy beach for the people of Rio de Janeiro to see and be seen by the tourist. This popular area and beach deserves a visit and upper-class residents, Barra has a certain Miami air about it.

On the weekends this small section of the long sandy beach is filled with beautiful people. At Praia do Pepê is the place for kitesurf. Championships (national and international) are often held at Barra da Tijuca many times during the year.

The beach looks perfect. Clear and soft sand, very large space to launch and land, some grass to setup your kite, nice crew support and rescue boat. Open ocean water, usually small chop, sometimes big chop and sometimes real left breaking waves, it depends on the swell. It doesn't get quite as crowded as Copacabana or Ipanema.

Getting there

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Nearest airport:
Aeroporto Internacional do Rio de Janeiro
Nearest big city:
Rio de Janeiro
Nearest town:
Rio de Janeiro
Trip from town:

From the airport it takes 40 min by car and by bus 1 hour and 30 min. From the airport: go to the Red Road until the Ayrton Senna Road at the end on a beach made the U turn to east. Go close to the big Mountain Gavea.

From the city: the majority of buses don’t pass the whole beach extension, so if you want to go by bus, it will leave you on the backstreet and you have to walk a little bit. There are some vans that go to Barra as well, but if you want a safe bet, the best option is to take a cab, since it’s a very big place. If you want to take a buss: Buses from downtown to Barra : 175, 179 (Alvorada) Vans: they pass through Copacabana beach, Ipanema, Leblon and downtown Rio. Just stick your hand out when they approach you and they’ll pick you up. The buses and vans take less time to get to Barra when they use LINHA AMARELA highway. This will save you about 20 minutes on the road.

Kite beach:

Book your Hotel in Barra da Tijuca (Kite Point, Praia Pepe)
Level required:
Best style:
bump & jump
Spot type:
soft sand
totally safe
launch area
life guard
gear rental
Beach rules:

Restriction is based on kiting only in front of the spot, rules are the basic of kiting on waves and crowded places.

The air and water temperatures are most of the year pretty warm, during the winter is necessary to wear a wetsuit. The best season is September till December, but is possible to kite all year.
Members photo shoots:

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Wind conditions

Dominant winds:
Respect to shore:
Best direction:
Wind strenght [Bf]:
Blowing at:
Best season:
[70% >= 4bf]
› January
› February
› November
› December
Medium season:
[45-70% >= 4bf]
› March
› September
› October
Wind details:

best wind direction is East/North-East, normally blowing at 10-15 knots 3 to 4 days a week, sometimes 15-25, rarely at 25-35 knots. Other times we have Southwest wind with big swells, North offshore wind and raining South wind. Typical kite sizes are 18, 12, 10.

On the water

Water quality:
Best tide:
no dependency
waves (max 2m)
consistent (61-120 days/yr)
Water details:
Open ocean water, usually small chop, sometimes big chop and sometimes real left breaking waves, it depends on the swell. Big waves are possible on southwest wind brought by big swells.

When is flat

Day activities:

You will appreciate the first few kilometers of the beach which are filled with bars and seafood restaurants, so you can have a snack in one of the breaks. In addition to restaurants, you’ll find several “barracas” (in Portuguese) or tents, which are simply food and drink stalls on the beach.

Do not miss the chance to go hang gliding in Sao Conrado. No previous experience necessary. There are several companies that offer English-speaking tandem flights for the adventurous. It is an absolutley thrilling and breath-taking experience to jump off the side of a mountain and glide gently to the beach below.

At the far Eastern end of the Barra beach, you will find Cabana do Pepe. Pepe was a famous hang glider that passed away in a hang gliding accident in Japan a few years ago. He started a sandwich shop on the beach that makes a variety of healthy sandwiches. Especially good are the fruit smoothies. Not to be missed. Cabana do Pepe is currently run by Pepe's widow. This is the most popular area of the Barra beach, and is the best area for people watching.

The water is clean, perfect for surfing, kiitesurf, windsurfing and body boarding. Come here to enjoy discotheques, shopping, good restaurants and bars

Night scene:

All sort of crazy late night life in Rio, la "Ciudad maravilliosa"!


Members photos

Barra da Tijuca - Praia do Pepê - WAVES
Barra da Tijuca - Praia do Pepê - view to the beach


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Reviews for Barra da Tijuca (Kite Point, Praia Pepe)

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MThompson's picture
Joined: 15 Apr 2013

- support from various quiosques at the sidewalk;
- large sand belt, making it easy to take off and landing, even solo;
- clear water, most of the time.

- beach can get crowded and bystanders may get in your way, because of curiosity;
- not much windy days;
- during high season and windy weekends, there is a lot of kiters in the water (100+) and traffic can get anoying;
- fishing boats cruising near the (non official) kite area (almost had my crashed kite being run over by one of them).

If you are in Rio and have an addiction and not too much time to wander around, go there. If you have some extra days, make your way to the Lagoon Region (Região dos Lagos - Búzios, Araruama or Praia Seca).

Ian Bailey (not verified)
Ian Bailey's picture

Barra is a seriously large beach with a couple of kite surf schools crowded together. Lessons are the most reasonably way to get kit hire and i paid about £70 for a couple of hours including kit, rescue and instruction. Wind and tide tend to go the same way so fight up wind or do what some of the locals do and catch a big down winder followed by a trip back on the bus!
Scare stories about Brazil abound however this place seems to be away from the tourist traps and i wasn't bothered by any hawkers nor did i feel unsafe at any time.
Locals told me season was Sep-Mar.
Following the kites to find your kitesurfing friends -definitely worth a go with Rio on your doorstep!

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