A schooner is type of boat that has two or more masts filled with sails. There were popular in Buzios as a means of sailing close to shore as they are able to skim over the water quite easily. Today in Buzios they are used as a means of transportation and for more formal guided tours around the Buzios peninsula.
The easiest way to catch a tour on a Schooner is to visit the pier near the Rua das Pedras. There are usually plenty of sailors trying to convince you to take their schooner tours. While the price varies depending on how many people are in your group feel free to bargain.
Although you should expect to pay R$30 to R$50 for a sea cruise that lasts half of the day. The other option is to actually contact one of the schooner tour companies and make a reservation for your group. This way you will ensured of a spot on a schooner. To get a list of schooner touring companies check with hotel concierge or tourist information center.
These schooner tours usually visit a few of the islands around Buzios as well as some of its beaches. One of the first stops is Azeda beach considered one of the most picturesque beaches in Buzios. João Fernandes is another beach the schooner visits. This beach is quite large and very popular. It has all the amenities you could possibly want and is made for families with young children. Canto beach is another stop along the way and is the perfect beach to relax and read a good book or sit outside at a beachside café and watch the fishing boats.
The schooner also drops visitors off at Virgens and Amores beach as well as Tartaruga beach. Branca Island and Feia Island are also common stops. At each of these stops visitors have the choice of getting off the schooner to spend a few hours enjoying the beach. It is quite easy to simply hop back on the next available schooner from your company that comes by.
Unfortunately you cannot purchase shade. So if you want to get a shady spot on the boat you are advised to arrive quite a bit before departure. Otherwise your ticket includes fresh fruit to eat as well as free mineral water and caipirinhas.
Some of the native fruits you will be able to enjoy include mango, papaya, guavas, passion fruit or pineapple. A caipirinha is made with lime, sugar and cachaca. Cachaça is an alcohol made from the fermentation of sugar cane. Caipirinha is considered the national cocktail of Brazil.
The other option for touring by schooner is to hire a private guide. Of course this is much more expensive but the schooner will not be over crowded with other visitors. In addition the boat will wait for you while you visit an island or a beach. Private tours can also cater their stops to your tastes. Simply let the captain know where you want to stop and it will be arranged. Most private tours can last from 3-5 hours. They usually offer drinks including soda, water and caipirinhas as well as fresh fruit and a tasty lunch.
These schooner tours are possibly the easiest way to get from beach to beach without renting a car. The sun can be quite hot so remember to pack plenty of sunscreen as well as any other item you might need in a waterproof bag.