Cabo Frio
Cabo Frio showing a small town or village
Walk cobblestone streets lined with pretty colonial houses, watch fishing activities along the waterfront and cruise a lagoon by rented boat.

A laid-back charm fills Cabo Frio’s Passagem neighborhood. This is the historic heart of the seaside town, where a legacy of colonial architecture harks back to the times of the 17th-century Portuguese settlers. Visit Passagem to stroll the alleys and esplanade once walked by the town’s founders.

The tree-shaded, cobblestone square Praça da Passagem is the focal point of the neighborhood. It's a social gathering point where you’ll see couples, groups of friends and children playing games. Admire the simple whitewashed façade of the 250-year-old São Benedito Church. Slaves built the chapel and at the time used the square to practice dances such as capoeira and jongo.

Whitewashed houses with blue, red and yellow painted shutter windows surround the main square. Some double up as casual restaurants with seating areas set on the quiet streets. Try traditional Portuguese food such as a francesinha, which is a meat-filled sandwich covered in melted cheese and a beer and tomato sauce. Return to the square at night when caipirinhas and cold beers flow freely and the street lights create a romantic atmosphere.

On the waterfront, fishers moor their brightly painted rowboats at the piers. Early risers come to watch as the sun appears from behind the green hills on the opposite side of Arauama Lagoon. Ferries depart regularly from the piers for the wondrous beaches of Japanese Island. Discover your adventurous side by exploring the lagoon with friends and a guide on a Hawaiian outrigger canoe.

Passagem is the neighborhood located immediately to the east of central Cabo Frio and is a 10-minute drive from the resort’s bus terminal. Several public bus lines travel throughout the area. Stay overnight in Passagem to be close to Forte Beach, the town’s most popular coastal area. This 4.6-mile (7.5-kilometer) long bay is packed with bars, is great for watersports and is home to the 17th-century São Mateus Fort.

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