Lençóis Maranhenses: Your Ultimate Exploration Guide to Brazil’s Spectacular Gem

5 Days

Venture with us on an uncharted journey into the mesmerizing heart of Brazil, into the vast and awe-inspiring Lençóis Maranhenses.
This extraordinary landscape, a grand spectacle of windswept dunes and seasonal lagoons, is a world away from the conventional.
In Northeast Brazil, Lençóis Maranhenses defies norms. Its contrasting desert and rain ecospheres create a spellbinding experience.
Under the radiant Brazilian sun, undulating white sands glisten like sugar.
Azure lagoons interrupt this sight. They emerge in the rainy season, forming an ethereal vista akin to a fantasy novel.

This paradise, a true gem in Brazil, offers a perfect blend of excitement and tranquility to satisfy all preferences.
This breathtaking destination awaits your arrival, eager to unveil its magnificent vistas and hidden gems.

Ready for the adventure of a lifetime?
Allow us to be your guide, your compass to navigate the mesmerizing labyrinth of the Lençóis Maranhenses.

Exploring Lençóis Maranhenses: A Comprehensive Guide Covering Overview, Itinerary, Costs, and FAQs

Journey Into The Heart Of Brazil: Exploring Lençóis Maranhenses

First, we’ll set the stage. We’ll cover the climate, ideal age group, type of public, and what to expect.
This overview is designed to introduce you to the thrilling adventures and serene escapes that this refuge offers!

Before we delve deeper, treat your eyes to a mesmerizing preview of Lençóis Maranhenses on our Twitter page 🐦 here.

Next, we’ll detail an itinerary for your stay, so you don’t miss any must-see spots.

We’ll cover costs, from accommodation and transfers to food, travel insurance, and essentials. You’ll be well-prepared for your journey.

Frequently Asked Questions
We’ll end with answers to eight common questions about visiting Lençóis Maranhenses, to help you plan your trip.

Join our expedition to uncover the extraordinary Lençóis Maranhenses. With Travellence, explore breathtaking Brazilian landscapes and experience an unforgettable journey. Ready to venture into the crown jewel of the state of Maranhão? Let’s unleash your spirit of adventure.

Furthermore, we highly recommend you to extend your Brazilian exploration to another dazzling locale – Jericoacoara.
Known for its spellbinding sunsets, Jericoacoara is a treasure waiting to be discovered. Dive into our detailed blog post 📖 here to uncover the alluring facets of Jericoacoara.


Lençóis Maranhenses, the mesmerizing jewel of Brazil, boasts an enchanting ecosystem that straddles multiple climates. The landscape lies in the grip of a tropical climate, characterized by a clear division between dry and rainy seasons. The year typically begins with the rainy season that lasts from January to June. These rains transform the expansive white dunes into a patchwork quilt of crystalline lagoons, glistening under the radiant sun. It’s during this period that Lençóis Maranhenses showcases its surreal beauty, presenting a spectacle that’s reminiscent of a fantasy realm. On the flip side, the dry season from July to December reveals an arid, desert-like panorama. The ebb and flow of these seasons endow Lençóis Maranhenses with a unique rhythm of life and a dynamic allure.

While Lençóis Maranhenses is a haven for explorers of all ages, it is particularly suited for the young and young at heart. The adventurous terrain is a playground for thrill-seekers, from sandboarding down the towering dunes to swimming in the serene lagoons. It is equally appealing to those in their golden years, who would enjoy leisurely strolls on the endless sand dunes, marvelling at the exceptional sunsets, and soaking in the tranquillity of this surreal landscape.

Lençóis Maranhenses appeals to a diverse audience. It’s a paradise for nature lovers, photographers seeking their next masterpiece, couples looking for a romantic getaway, and families wanting a unique bonding experience. This exceptional destination is a hiker’s dream, a wildlife enthusiast’s playground, and a haven for those seeking a spiritual retreat.

As for what to expect, prepare to be enamored by the paradox that is Lençóis Maranhenses. Here, you’ll find tranquility and adventure nestled together, moments of absolute solitude punctuated by encounters with vibrant local communities. The region is rich in local culture, with friendly natives always willing to share their stories and folklore. The adventures extend beyond the dunes and lagoons, with nearby fishing villages and mangroves waiting to be explored. From sampling local cuisine to experiencing traditional festivals, every aspect of Lençóis Maranhenses invites you to immerse yourself in the heart of Brazil.

To summarize, Lençóis Maranhenses is a destination that defies convention and promises a plethora of experiences, enough to satiate every traveller’s wanderlust. The allure of Lençóis Maranhenses lies in its contrasting landscapes, vibrant culture, and the promises of adventure and serenity in equal measure. And therein lies the true charm of this destination – it’s an oasis of surprises that beckons every visitor to discover their own unique journey. This extraordinary landscape is your canvas to paint your ideal vacation, whether it’s an adrenaline-charged adventure, a tranquil escape, or anything in between.

The average temperature in Lençóis Maranhenses typically ranges between 22°C (71.6°F) and 30°C (86°F) during the day, throughout the year. However, please bear in mind that these temperatures are averages, and they may fluctuate. The dunes, being out in the open, can get significantly warmer during the peak of the day.

As for what kind of clothes to take, considering the tropical climate, light and breathable clothing is essential. Here are some recommendations:

Lightweight, quick-dry materials are ideal for this environment. Think along the lines of linen or thin cotton. Pack plenty of shorts, T-shirts, and light dresses. Long sleeves and pants may also be beneficial for cooler evenings and to protect from any potential insects.

  1. Swimwear: Since the lagoons formed by the rain are one of the main attractions, don’t forget your swimwear. A good beach towel or sarong would also be useful.
  2. Footwear: A sturdy pair of walking sandals that can handle sand and water would be your best bet for footwear. If you plan on extensive walking or hiking, a pair of lightweight, breathable hiking shoes or boots would be useful.
  3. Sun Protection: Given the open, sun-drenched landscape of the dunes, it’s crucial to bring sun protection. This includes a wide-brimmed hat, UV-protective sunglasses, and plenty of high-SPF sunblock.
  4. Lightweight Jacket or Windbreaker: Evenings can become cooler, especially in the dry season, so a lightweight jacket or windbreaker is advisable.
  5. Accessories: Don’t forget essentials like a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated, and maybe a lightweight scarf or bandana to shield your face from dust or sand if it gets windy.

Remember, the key is to stay comfortable and protected against the sun, while also being able to enjoy the water in the lagoons.


Arrive at São Luís, the nearest city with an airport, and transfer to the small town of Barreirinhas, your gateway to Lençóis Maranhenses. Spend the day settling into your accommodation and exploring the charming town. In the evening, sample some local cuisine; try the local fish cooked in a rich coconut sauce or 'Arroz de Cuxá', a traditional Maranhão dish made with rice, dried shrimp, and a herb called Vinagreira. It's an introduction to the region's bold, tangy flavors.

Embark on your first tour into the heart of the national park. Ride a 4x4 vehicle across the sandy riverbanks and then take a 2-hour trek across the spellbinding dunes. Once you reach the Blue Lagoon, take a refreshing dip in its crystal-clear waters. Afterward, experience a breathtaking sunset over the dunes, a memory that will stay with you forever.

Board a speedboat to navigate the winding Preguiças River, lined with verdant mangroves. Stop at the small fishing villages of Vassouras, Mandacaru, and Caburé. In Mandacaru, climb the picturesque Preguiças Lighthouse for a panoramic view of the endless dunes, the river, and the sea. Enjoy a beachside lunch in Caburé before heading back to Barreirinhas.

Venture further into the park and visit the remote village of Atins. Known for its tranquil atmosphere and exceptional kitesurfing conditions, it's a place to relax or indulge in some adventure. While here, don't miss the chance to savor the region's best 'Camarão na Moranga' - a creamy shrimp stew baked inside a pumpkin.

End your journey on a high note - a scenic flight over Lençóis Maranhenses (optional but highly recommended). This offers an unparalleled view of the vast dunes and lagoons, a sight that is sure to take your breath away. Post the flight, transfer back to São Luís for your onward journey.

This itinerary combines adventure, relaxation, and gastronomic delight, immersing you in the wonder that is Lençóis Maranhenses. The memories, flavors, and awe-inspiring vistas will be etched into your heart, ensuring a part of you always resides in the Maranhão sheets.


  • Navigating the financial aspects of your journey to Lençóis Maranhenses is crucial to enjoying a stress-free trip. Here, we break down the cost factors associated with your adventure in the heart of Brazil.
  • Accommodation: Depending on your preference, Barreirinhas offers a variety of accommodations, from cozy guesthouses to upscale resorts. A budget guesthouse might cost you around BRL 150-200 per night, while a mid-range hotel can go for BRL 250-400. For those seeking luxury, expect to pay upwards of BRL 500.
  • Transfer: From São Luís to Barreirinhas, a one-way transfer in a shared shuttle costs around BRL 50-70. If you prefer a private transfer, it would be around BRL 400-500.
  • Tours: A standard 4x4 tour to the lagoons costs about BRL 80-100 per person. The Preguiças River tour is in the same range. The optional scenic flight over the dunes is a premium experience, costing around BRL 400-500 per person.
  • Food: Food costs are relatively reasonable in Barreirinhas. A meal at a modest restaurant costs about BRL 20-30, while a meal at a nicer restaurant will run you BRL 50-100. Don't forget to try the local delicacies we mentioned in the itinerary!
  • Travel Insurance: It's essential to have travel insurance for any unexpected circumstances. The cost of travel insurance varies greatly depending on coverage, duration, and the individual, but expect to pay around BRL 100-200 for a basic policy.
  • Other Essential Expenses: These may include personal expenditures, souvenirs, and incidental costs. A reasonable daily budget for these miscellaneous expenses could be around BRL 50-100.
  • Entry Fee: The Lençóis Maranhenses National Park entry fee is BRL 2 for Brazilians and BRL 10 for foreign tourists.
  • Please note, these costs are approximate and can fluctuate based on seasons, exchange rates, and personal preferences. It's always good to budget a bit more for unforeseen expenses.
  • From the undulating dunes to the serene lagoons, every real spent on this journey into Lençóis Maranhenses is an investment in unforgettable memories. As you plan your adventure, we hope this guide gives you a solid foundation to anticipate the costs involved, so you can focus on experiencing the extraordinary allure of this magical landscape.
When is the best time to visit Lençóis Maranhenses?

The best time to visit is between May and September, when the rainy season has filled the lagoons and the weather is usually clear and sunny. However, Lençóis Maranhenses is captivating year-round, offering distinct experiences in both wet and dry seasons.

How do I get to Lençóis Maranhenses?

The nearest airport to Lençóis Maranhenses is in São Luís. From São Luís, you can take a bus or private transfer to Barreirinhas, the gateway to the national park. The journey takes about 4-5 hours.

Do I need a guide to explore the park?

While you can technically explore the park on your own, it is highly recommended to hire a local guide or join a tour. The park’s terrain is challenging to navigate and local guides can ensure your safety and enrich your experience with their knowledge of the region.

Are there any safety concerns while visiting Lençóis Maranhenses?

While generally safe, it’s advised to take normal precautions like safeguarding your belongings and using licensed tour operators. Also, be prepared for the intense sun and heat during the day – bring a hat, use sunblock, and stay hydrated.

What kind of wildlife can I see in the park?

Despite its desert-like appearance, Lençóis Maranhenses hosts a range of wildlife, especially in and around the lagoons. You might see migratory birds, turtles, and a variety of fish. The neighboring mangroves are also home to monkeys and tropical birds.

Is the park suitable for children and elderly travellers?

Yes, the park offers a range of experiences suitable for all ages. However, do bear in mind that the trekking could be strenuous for some, and the sun can be intense. Always ensure that every member of your party is well-prepared and knows what to expect.

Can I swim in the lagoons?

Absolutely! The lagoons are filled with rainwater and are perfect for swimming. The water can be surprisingly warm, especially in the smaller lagoons.

What's the food like in the region?

The region offers a unique gastronomic experience, with dishes heavily influenced by indigenous, African, and Portuguese cuisines. You’ll find plenty of fresh fish and shrimp, rice dishes, and unique fruits and vegetables.

These questions provide a brief peek into what awaits you at Lençóis Maranhenses. Remember, the beauty of travel lies in discovery, and there’s so much more to explore, experience, and relish at this wondrous destination. Be curious, embrace the unexpected, and let the dunes lead your journey into the heart of Brazil.

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Lençóis Maranhenses: Your Ultimate Exploration Guide to Brazil’s Spectacular Gem