Icaraizinho is a very tranquil fishing village located just two hours from Fortaleza. Sounds like Jeri? Think again, Icaraizinho is still a growing destination very much in its youth. The windsurfing is idyllic and un-crowded with an extremely relaxed atmosphere. You find yourself living in an almost perfect cycle of the sun - windsurfing all day and passing out exhausted at 9.30.
Fortaleza is the closest airport - only two hours away. We flew with TAM Brazilian airlines via Sao Paulo. TAP Air Portugal also has regular flights from Europe to Fortaleza International Airport via Lisbon.
The transfer is two hours in a 4WD with the last part of the journey being slightly off road! There is no point hiring a car, as the roads are extremely hard to navigate.
If travelling from Jericoacoara the best and most scenic option is to take the “Buggy Adventure” provided by Club Ventos. In true beach-search style, the journey takes you in dune buggies right down the coast, passing some truly deserted locations. Our buggy journey was with Carlos who must have been an ex Formula 1 mechanic . He already had the bonnet up just outside Jeri and then went on to navigate through some seriously tricky river marshes. At one point we went ploughing into what looked like a puddle. We all jumped out while the engine was still running. Luckily, we managed to lift the buggy to safety!
The journey also includes two river crossings. The road appears to end; after a few beeps from the driver, a guy and his son either punt or drive a wooden raft across the river for the buggy to travel on. A truly Brazilian experience!
Due to the large tidal range, Icaraizinho offers a massive range of conditions and generally you don't have to share them with many people.
At low tide, the reef is revealed creating what we called “ the swimming pool” - perfect flat water with a nice sandy bottom at just over waist depth - freestyle heaven! The reef is just flat rock - we sat on it most days to film. If you want, there is a small pathway through the reef to get you to the open ocean.
As the tide rises, the reef creates some gentle waves pushing all the way into the beach. There are plenty of markers to see that the reef is deep enough to sail over.
It is best at high tide with nice, organised chop and small waves flattening off at the inside. Unlike Jeri there is no wind shadow on the inside at high tide making Icaraizinho one of the most perfect all round locations.
There are also lagoons about 45 minutes by buggy offering even more perfect flat water conditions.
North Eastern Brazil is one of the most reliably windy places in the world. If you go between June and December and want to take time off the water, you will miss a windy day!
In Icaraizinho, it is windy from first thing in the morning, building until lunch time and staying until well after sunset. The wind is side-shore and is generally considered to be a little lighter than Jeri, making it ideal for all levels of windsurfing.
During 10 days in Icaraizinho, I sailed my 4.5 most of the time and my 5.1 and 3.9 just once.