Lençóis Maranhenses Travel

Rising above the Salar de Uyuni, Tunupa volcano affords otherworldly views of the shimmering salt flats below.

Inland from the Atlantic Coast, in a northerly corner of Brazil, lies one of the most beautiful landscapes in the entire country: Lençóis Maranhenses National Park. Smooth, sandy dunes rise up and down for 1,550sq km, filled with crystalline waters – lagoons of rainwater that are collected during the rainy season. With so many refreshing pools dotted around the national park, Lençóis Maranhenses isn’t just a sublime sight to behold, but also the perfect place to enjoy a dip during a visit to this surreal but stunning place.

Picture sweeping curves of bone-white sand, rolling up and down into the distance, as far as the eye can see, punctuated with pure blue waters that twinkle in the sunlight and beckon you in. This is Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, a natural phenomenon that occurs in northern Brazil, 260km from the city of São Luís and up to 50km inland from the Atlantic Ocean. Every year, strong winds heave the sand up from the coast and shape it into these rippling dunes, with nearly 50 inches of rain falling over the year and subsequently collecting in lagoons that plunge as deep as 10ft.

A trip to Lençóis Maranhenses is one that will fill you with awe and wonder, as you contemplate the ethereal landscape and learn how this natural phenomenon takes place every year. There is also wildlife dwelling in the channels of water, such as Wolf-fish, plus Turtles, Monkeys and migratory birds that inhabit certain corners of the national park. Come for a day tour and tuck into a picnic on the dunes; soak in the lagoons and bring your camera for some seriously amazing photographs!

Highlights of Lençóis Maranhenses:

Swimming in the lagoons

Forget infinity pools, the beach or any other kind of swimming spot; to bathe in the waters of Lençóis Maranhenses is a totally unique experience. There are countless lagoons that divide the rising sand dunes of this national park, so all you need to do is take your pick and jump in!

Boat ride on the river

Explore the national park from an altogether different perspective: by boat! After boarding a vessel, float down the Preguiça River to reach Cabure Beach, Vassouras – where mangrove systems and Monkeys are in abundance – and Mandacuru, to see the famous lighthouse with its amazing vistas of the lagoons, sea, and beach.

Lunch in Lençóis Maranhenses

Enjoy a memorable lunch in Lençóis Maranhenses, as the backdrop of this national park is all too breathtaking to forget. Flanked by the river and the Atlantic Ocean, Cabure is a back-to-nature beach that is delightfully remote, where you can tuck into a delicious lunch at one of the casual eateries while absorbing the laidback atmosphere. Or, go for a boxed lunch on the dunes, with the lagoons and sand all around you for the picnic of your dreams.

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