Off The Beaten Path: Ilhabela, Brazil

Posted by Rhea Cortado on

Brazil has more than 4000 miles of coastline, but the island of Ilhabela has a special place in our heart. This former fisherman village is where our founder Amanda Chinchelli first fell in love with the ocean and inspired the latest collection’s colorful patterns.

Our Seea ambassadors shared their favorite places to surf, explore waterfalls, and what to pack to this off-the-beaten path paradise.

Leah Dawson wears the Leah Surf Suit in Vida.

Where to Surf 

“Praia do Bonete was really a dynamic wave, with refracting swells, bouncy sections, steep drops—the whole lot. I brought my 5’6” flex tail twin fin. In small or slightly big surf, this board finds a way to go really fast!” - Seea Ambassador Leah Dawson

“My favorite wave to ride my 5’2 keel fish by Thomas Bexon was Praia do Bonete. You could watch the swell coming in to the big bay, bouncing off the sea walls, and finally it would come to the little corner we were in and wedge up into a punchy barreling right. It took us a bit to figure out where to sit, where to take off, and how to surf the wave—but watching the local boys for a bit put us in the perfect spot.” - Seea Ambassador Sierra Lerback 

“Bonnette was a gorgeous adventure and the wave was really interesting because it broke against a cliff making it a wild wedge to swim. It was fun to watch the girls get the hang of it.” – Seea photographer Luki O’Keefe

Leah Dawson wears the Leah Surf Suit in Vida and Sierra Lerback wears the Bondi Surf Suit in Vida

Sierra in the Bondi Surf Suit in Vida

Sierra wears the Kirra One Piece in Kayapo.

Taste of the Tropics

“Between surfs on the boat would always have Brazilian Maracujá fruit on hand. Similar to what I’ve always known as a Liliko’i or Passionfruit in Hawaii, the Maracujá in Brazil were at least triple the size, extremely sweet and tart. I prefer to eat them plain but they’re great with something creamy or in a drink!” - Sierra Lerback

Sierra wears the Milos Reversible Bikini Top in Vida and Lulu Shorts in Black.

Cachoeira da Laje 

“Being in the waterfalls felt surreal. The cool river water running beneath our feet, hearing birds singing in the trees, and breathing in the fresh air felt revitalizing after a long morning in the sun.” - Sierra Lerback

“Almost 85% of Ilhabela is a protected biosphere. The vibrant color of green was more powerful and abundant than anywhere I’ve ever seen. The jungle, trees, and forests we passed along our journey, had my attention and gaze of wonder. 

Anytime we see things for the first time, it arises that childlike wonder, and that feeling is priceless. Never have I felt a green aura pulsing louder through my field. Brazil’s forest is magic, and now my respect and love for it is quantified. ” - Leah Dawson

Marina Carbonell wears the Kennedy One Piece in Kayapo.

Sierra wears the Kirra One Piece in Kayapo.

Sierra wears the Kirra One Piece in Kayapo. Marina wears the Soleil Bikini in Tropicalia

Pro Photo Tip 

“Everywhere I go is humid so I just do my best to keep everything dry in my camera cases and I have menstrual pads in my housing to absorb any moisture and keep from fogging. If it’s extra humid I'll add a tampon or two.” - Photographer Luki O’Keefe

Luki wears the Kirra One Piece in Kayapo and the Lulu Shorts in Black.

Favorite Moments

“My most fond memory of Brazil was the kindness of the people. No matter where we went, or where we surfed, we were greeted with a smiling face. I have never felt more welcome and at ease when on a trip to a new country!” – Sierra Lerback

“Meeting local surfer Marina Carbonell was one of my favorite parts of the trip. All of us girls bonded with her, which reminded me how much surfing ties people together from all over the world.” – Luki O'Keefe

Marina wears the Georgia Bikini in Flora. Sierra wears the Bell Pant in Flora

Shop the 2019 Collection. 


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1 comment


  • Love my Sierra and her cool styles and surfing

    Susan E.T. Hill on

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