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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Natal as an adjective refers to birth. As a proper noun, Natal may refer to:


As a place name, Natal usually relates to the Portuguese word for Christmas. For example, Vasco da Gama named the South African region of Natal after his landing there on Christmas Day 1497, and the village that became Natal, Brazil, was founded on Christmas Day 1599. See also Christmas Island (disambiguation).


See also


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Natal, the capital of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil, is a city on the Atlantic coast, known for its beaches.


Natal was first settled in the 1500s, but unlike other Northeastern capitals, it did not quite benefit from the economic boom resulting from the region's sugar cane production. Instead it grew moderately and more organizedly, burgeoning on the state's cattle-raising activities and salt and oil extraction.

During World War II the city hosted a U.S. military base established there because of its strategic position as the easternmost point on the Atlantic. Nowadays Natal is becoming a popular tourist destination with Brazilians and foreigners alike, offering gorgeous beaches and a few good hotels and restaurants.

Get in

By plane

The region is served by Augusto Severo International Airport (Aeroporto Internacional Augusto Severo) 20Km far from Natal's center. There are numerous direct flights from most important Brazilian capitals, including São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Recife, Fortaleza, Salvador, Belo Horizonte and Brasilia.

A taxi to Ponta Negra is about R$ 50.

By bus

Natal's bus station is about 3 km southwest of the city center, and some 5 km northwest of the Ponta Negra beach. A taxi to the latter is about R$ 25.

  • To Fortaleza 8 times daily (3 of these stopping in Mossoró) by Nordeste[4]. R$ 35-150, 8-10 hours. Also by Guanabara[5].
  • Taxis flag at R$ 3,88. Rate 2 is about 50% more expensive than rate 1. All taxi prices in this article are rate 1.
  • Forte dos Reis Magos, the star-shaped fort at the northern tip of the beach, was built in 1598.
  • Sunset in Potengy River (Pôr do sol no rio Potengy) The river stays a few meters away from the downtown of the city and the sunset is really wonderful to see. It's near the Army base and there are some ships on the river.
  • Museum Câmara Cascudo It's in city downtown and have lots of stuff about the region's culture and folklore. Good for who want meet the "soul" of the people.
  • Zumbi beach (to the North) - Only by Buggy - One day trip.
  • Genipabu beach (to the North) - Only by Buggy - Half day trip.
  • Barra de Cunhaú beach (to the South) - Only by Buggy - One day trip.
  • Natal's urban beaches stretch for several kilometers, each section having its own name.

From the north, there's Praia do Forte, Praia do Meio, and Praia dos Artistas. Next there is a stretch of 10 km called Via Costeira, where Natal's best hotels , and little more than that, are located. Further south is Ponta Negra, the most developed beach with Morro do Careca, the best known landmark of Natal.

  • Hire a buggy with a driver and travel along the coast, both North and Southwards.

The coast of the State of Rio Grande do Norte affords a rare combination of dunes, lagoons, sandstone cliffs and vegetation in between.

  • The To a Toa Boat Cruise[6] at the Potengi river to watch the sunset. You will see the city from different angles, pass through historical places and neighborhoods, mangrooves, river beaches. Recorded guiding in English and Portuguese.


Plenty of seafood restaurants with outdoor seating can be found along the beaches.

  • Camarões novo There are two restaurants with the same name. Look for the newest. Mains around R$ 40.
  • Abade[7] Once voted the best restaurant in town.
  • No name, Rua Afonso Magalhaes 129 (Almost at the top of the hill). Cheap eat in Ponta Negra Set lunch R$ 6.  edit
  • Astral Sucos, Kiosque 12, Ponta Negra. A wide range of juices, açai, and small snacks.  edit


Ponta Negra nightlife has concentrated along Rua Dr. Manoel Arauju, aso known as Rua da Salsa, a few blocks inland from the beach at kiosk 11. A significant amount of holiday prostitutes blend in.


Most tourist lodgings are in Ponta Negra, heaps and heaps of them. Posted prices are negotiable in low season.

  • Missionebrasile, [8]. Rental apartments in Ponta Negra  edit
  • Pousada Ponta Negra, Rua Afonso Magalhães 115, [9]. Kitchen facilities. Dorm bed R$ 30, also has singles and doubles.  edit
  • Albergue Lua Cheia (Albergue da Bruxinha), Rua Dr. Manoel A. B. de Araújo, nº 500 Praia de Ponta Negra, [10]. A purpose-built hostel. Nice facilities, excellent atmosphere. Right in the nightlife street. Overpriced dorm bed from R$ 45..  edit
  • Pousada Maravista, [11]. One small block from the beach. Balcony breakfast with a view. Single R$ 70, Double R$ 120, Triple R$ 150.  edit

Stay safe

If visiting the Forte dos Reis Magos, it's highly recommended that you take a taxi there, and not walk along Praia Forte; recently there have been an increasing number of robberies and assaults of tourists along the beach, past the populated areas (actually, one should not walk to the Forte because it is far away - about 3 km - from the nearest hotel or bus stop). Official statistics show that Natal is the safest city among the Brazilian capitals. Pick pockets follow the tourists, but robbery is rare. The city is conscious of the importance of tourism, which causes the Government to invest heavily on ostensive security of the busiest spots.

Routes through Natal
END ← Touros ←  N noframe S  João PessoaRecife
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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

There is more than one meaning of Natal discussed in the 1911 Encyclopedia. We are planning to let all links go to the correct meaning directly, but for now you will have to search it out from the list below by yourself. If you want to change the link that led you here yourself, it would be appreciated.


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also natal, and nätäl




From Portuguese Natal ("Christmas"), because the region in South Africa was discovered by the Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama on Christmas Day, 1497.

Proper noun


  1. A seaport and the state capital of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil.
  2. A former British colony and province of South Africa. It is now called KwaZulu-Natal province.


  • Russian: Наталь (Natál’) m.


Proper noun

Natal m.

  1. Christmas


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