5 days from £1115pp plus international flights.
If you feel like getting away from it all, to visit what is considered to be one of the most beautiful places on the Brazilian Coast, then look no further that a trip to Lencois Maranhenses National Park.
Lencois are bedsheets or linen in Portuguese. This is a wonderful way to describe the rolling sand dunes, it's as though they are bedsheets hung out to dry, changing their shape as the sands shift with the winds.
Spend a few days here. This unique natural phenomenon where desert-like dunes are interspersed with beautiful natural freshwater lagoons and lakes is a surreal sight. It's something quite different. You'll enjoy a guided 4x4 tour, where you can feel the sand between your toes and enjoy a swim in crystal clear lagoons. Also on this trip, spend the day gently sailing up the Rio Preguicas which translates as 'Lazy River' and top it off with a delightful lunch of the freshest seafood from one of the restaurants at Cabure.
Spend your first and last night in Sao Luis, this is the gateway to Lencois Maranhenses. Rich in French and Portuguese colonial history this city is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site and worth a visit in its own right.
This trip is best done between June and October when the lagoons are at their best. The heavy rains from January to June fill the lagoons. Once the rains stop, as time goes on, the water evaporates, and come late October most of the water has gone, so it's important to time your trip well.
Arrive at Sao Luis airport where you are met and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day has been kept free so you can relax after your journey and enjoy the ocean views and the hotel's outdoor pool. Alternatively you can venture out and explore the historic centre of the town, where cobbled streets and colourful colonial mansions hark back to a prosperous era. This is also where you will find several museums and art galleries.
You are collected early this morning for the 4 hour drive to Berreirinhas, gateway to Lencois Maranhenses National Park. There is a lunch stop along the way in Morros where you can sample some traditional fare. This afternoon you get your first taste of the National Park with its incredible sand dunes and lagoons. The Blue Lagoon Circuit, which takes in Lagoa Azul, Lagoa dos Peixes, Lagoa Bonita and Lagoas do Etrono is well known. Your guide takes you to the best lagoons according to the season and climate conditions. Experience sunset in the national park and then head back to Barreirinhas. The rest of the evening is free. Breakfast
After breakfast you embark on a full day boat tour on Rio Preguicas, heading towards the coast and Cabure Beach. The first stop is at Vassouras where you set foot back on dry land. Here you try fresh coconut water and watch the monkeys that live here in the mangroves, before continuing the journey to Madacaru city. Visit the lighthouse for stunning views of the park. The boat trip carries on to Cabure Beach, where there are numerous local seafood restaurants at the river's edge. After a little exploring, it's back on board to Berreirinhas where you can spend the evening at leisure. Breakfast
This morning has been kept free so you can have a slow start to your day or enjoy some of the optional activities available such as a scenic flight over the Lencois Maranhenses or a last stroll around Barreirinhas. After lunch, at about 1pm, you are transferred back to Sao Luis by road. The evening has been kept free for you. Breakfast.
Enjoy a last breakfast at your hotel in Sao Luis before you check out. You are picked up and taken to the airport at a pre-arranged time, so you can catch your flight to your next destination. This is where the trip ends. Breakfast
Guide price from (pp sharing): £1115 (ex. international flights)
Accommodation on a twin share basis; meals specified as included; ground transfers between Sao Luis and Barreirinhas; 4x4 tour in Lencois Maranhenses; boat tour.
Flights to and from Sao Luis, meals not mentioned as included, drinks, tips, visa fees, travel insurance, optional extra activities.
Getting there: This holiday starts and ends in Sao Luis. Regional and international flights are not included. Regional flights will vary. International flights from the UK will start from around £750 per person.
Departure dates: This is a tailor made trip. We can amend this trip to suit your travel plans. Chat to us to see how it can fit into your holiday.
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Time: GMT -3 hours
Flight time: Most flights go to Sao Paulo but some airlines have direct flights to Rio de Janeiro, and to North-eastern Brazil. British Airways and TAM have direct flights from London and many European carriers also offer flights to Brazil.
Language: Portuguese is the official language. Spanish and English are understood quite widely.
Visas: Not required for British nationals.
Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations, except yellow fever if you are coming from an infected area. Malaria prophylactics are recommended in the rainforest.