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Hotels in Natal

Founded on Christmas day in 1599, the city of Natal sits at the mouth of the Potengi River on Brazil’s Atlantic Coast. It’s the capital city of Rio Grande do Norte and is widely considered to be the safest capital city in Brazil. It’s also home to the cleanest air in South America, according to NASA. Natal is the perfect base if you want to discover the unspoilt beaches of Rio Grande do Norte, or explore the nearby Dune State Park on the camel-back.

It’s a favourite holiday destination with rich Brazilians. There’s no shortage of hotels in Natal if you’re planning a trip, with a few particularly interesting areas to discover.

Ponta Negra

The main hive of tourist activity in Natal is the Ponta Negra neighbourhood. Most of the hotels in Natal are concentrated around the famous beach, which sits next to the iconic Morro do Careca sand dune. The beach is a great place to spot traditional fishing boats (jangadas) and you can grab a bite to eat at the rustic barraca restaurants which sit on the shore. Natal’s nightlife is fairly low key compared to other Brazlilian cities, but if you’re looking for a bar and restaurant scene you’ll find it in Ponta Negra.

Cidade Alta & Ribeira

The historical centre of Natal has a unique mix of buildings with neoclassical, colonial, art deco and modern styles all jostling for attention. Hotels in Ribeira are in a great location for sightseeing, as the baroque style Igreja de Santo Antonio, French style Teatro Alberto Maranhao, and the eclectic Palacio Felipe Camarao are all nearby. You can find a good selection of restaurants, museums and clubs in Rua Chile, and for souvenir shopping the Centro de Turismo de Natal is well worth a look. The former orphanage is home to 40 shops selling local crafts as well as an art gallery, nightclub, and restaurant.

Praia dos Artistas

If you want the best of both worlds, look for hotels in Praia dos Artistas, which is a five minute walk away from the historic centre. Although it’s not as beautiful as the beaches along the coast, it’s still a local favourite and can get very busy during the weekend. The beach is particularly popular among surfers, due to the high waves. In the evening you can find a good selection of bars and restaurants along the beach front and it’s a good place to find regional music and dancing.