On this two-week excursion to distant northern Brazil, spend two weeks experiencing true Brazilian culture. Your itinerary includes visits to Sao Luis de Maranhao, Lencois Maranhenses National Park, seaside villages, and two days in Fernando de Noronha. This journey is ideal for those seeking a taste of everything!
Trek through a myriad of dunes and lagoons in Maranhenses National Park
Swim in clear freshwater pools formed from heavy rainstorms
Explore the beaches & landscape of Jericoacoara, a coastal village
Rise early and view dolphins playing in Baia dos Golfinhos
Arrive today to Sao Luis de Maranhao and transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is yours to explore Sao Luis de Maranhao, which was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its magnificent colonial architecture. Treat yourself to coffee in a cafe or wander the streets of this lively city.
After enjoying breakfast, meet your guide and take a vehicle to the entrance of the Lencois Maranhenses National Park. This National Park was named for the immense dunes which spread across its landscape like a bedsheet. Lencois Maranhenses is divided into two distinct regions: Grandes Lencois and Pequenos Lencois. Stop to eat lunch and continue by vehicle to the trek's starting point. The two-hour trek takes you on foot through a myriad of dunes and pristine lagoons. Stop along the way to swim in these clear, freshwater pools and watch the sun as it dips below the sand-line. Set up tents and partake in a unique dining experience on the slopes of the dunes.
Breakfast is served on the dunes of Lencois Maranhenses, and the trek continues along the sand and lagoons for two hours. Choose to swim in the freshwater pools or relax on the sand as you make your way. The pools are left from heavy rainstorms between January and June, eventually becoming warm and crystal clear. Your destination is Baixa Grande, a small town within the borders of the park. Eat lunch in Baixa Grande and spend the afternoon exploring the community. Tonight's accommodations are unique - hammocks in a small cottage in the fishing village.
Eat breakfast in the village and resume trekking across the park. Admire the valleys and hills made by the ever-changing sand formations as you walk approximately three hours to the coast of Rio Negro. Explore the beach and get picked up by a vehicle which takes you to the small fishing village of Atins. The afternoon is yours to relax on the beaches surrounding Atins or walk the quaint and charming streets of this small coastal town.
Take a free morning in Atins to rest after your trek across the dunes of Lencois Maranhenses. In the afternoon, embark on a boat to travel along the coast to Rio Preguicas. At the entrance of Barreirinhas, another national park, transportation is waiting to return to Sao Luis de Marandao for the night.
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel and then transfer to the airport for your flight on to the Fortaleza airport. You are met at Fortaleza by your guide and transferred to Jericoacoara by vehicle, an 5-hour drive tour. The first half of this drive takes place on the road, but the second half takes you on an adventurous ride across sand dune beaches in a 4 X 4 with stops along the coast and at the lagoons to explore, walk, and take a swim. Jericoacoara is a truly remote destination in Brazil, and the trip ends at an elegant pousada, your new home in Brazil!
Take a few days to explore the forgotten coastal village of Jericoacoara! Charming and inspirational, Jericoacoara features diverse landscape and beaches which exceed expectations. In addition to exploring the dunes and rich vegetation surrounding the village, you can also enjoy horseback riding, yoga classes, surfing lessons, or four-wheel vehicle drives around the surrounding beaches. Windsurfing and sand-boarding are also available for the more adventurous. Sand-boarding is a sport similar to snowboarding. It allows individuals the opportunity to surf down the dunes surrounding Jericoacoara. Alternatively, you can also explore the area on foot. The sandy beaches offer pristine views of the ocean at at easy pace. Jericoacoara's natural beauty is found in its golden beaches, pristine waters, and idyllic atmosphere. The village's inhabitants are warm, welcoming, and treat guests to a magical experience in this enchanting fishing town.
Early this morning return the five hours to Fortaleza airport for your flight on to this beautiful archipelago paradise. Fernando de Noronha is a highly protected, exclusive destination made up of 21 islands, only one of which is inhabited. Officially a Marine National Park, the archipelago is home to some of the most stunning beaches and inspiring landscapes in the world. Settle into your hotel just outside of Noronha's unofficial capital city, Vila dos Rememdios. Enjoy dinner and a relaxing evening on the main island.
After breakfast on your first morning in Fernando de Noronha, get acquainted with your surroundings by taking a morning hike to the clifftop lookout above Baia dos Golfinhos. Playful dolphins visit this bay, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, particularly in the early mornings. Continue the hike to Baia dos Porcos (named after the Cuban Bay of Pigs) and then Baia do Sancho, considered the most beautiful beaches in Brazil, where you have the chance to swim and snorkel. Return to Vila dos Remedios via the coastal trail and visit beaches such as Cacimba do Padre, Bode, Americano, and Boldro. Total excusion duration is 3 hours, and the hiking distances can be adjusted based on preferences.
For the remainder of your stay, fill your days with the island adventure of your choice. Activities abound on Fernando de Noronha during your Brazil:
- Fernando de Noronha Scuba diving: Touted as one of the best diving destinations worldwide, Noronha's crystal clear waters beg to be explored! Dives are catered to the travelers' ability levels and degree of experience.
- Beach days: Fernando de Noronha is home to Brazil's most beautiful beaches: Stroll the length of these pristine white sand expanses, splash and play in the warm Atlantic surf, and relax your cares away under the Brazilian sun. You can also try your hand at surfing in the idyllic waves of Baia do Sancho.
- Main island tour: Meander through the trails and walkways of the island, either on foot or in a dune buggy, learning about the historical significance of Noronha and enjoying its exotic vegetation
- Tamar Project: Attend an class put on by Brazil's environmental organization, the Tamar Project. The Project focuses on conservation and protection of Brazil's endangered marine life, especially its sea turtle population.
In the evenings dine at your hotel or local restaurants, unwind from the days' activities, and enjoy the marvelous sunsets over the islands.
Day 13: Depart Fernando de Noronha
Fly from Fernando de Noronha to the Recife airport (a short one hour flight) and connect with your flight on to Rio and home.
The trip might have been the absolute best of our lifetime (thus far). We particularly want to commend our guide Peter in the Guilin area-he was so incredibly attentive, energetic, enthusiastic-and absolutely dedicated to ensuring that our meals were 100% vegetarian.