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South America » Brazil » Maranhão » Barreirinhas
September 10th 2009
Published: September 15th 2009
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Doesn't Look GoodDoesn't Look GoodDoesn't Look Good

The driver tries to fix the Toyota Bandeirante.
I know it's an odd title but it's the best I could come up with.
The Parque Nacional Lencois de Maranhenses is literally at the end of the road, to keep going east from here - which is what we wanted to do - needs off road 4x4's, plenty of time, a lot flexibility and tons of patience. We don't have some of these so went on a long day trip from Sao Luis, it was a good decision and well worth the travel time, the place is sensational.
After a 5am !!!!! start we got to Barreirinhas where we transferred to a Toyota Bandeirante 4x4 for the last 15km to the park entrance. After a few km we came to a long, sandy uphill climb which needed the low 4 wheel drive setting, unfortunately the driver couldn't get this to work (bloody Toyotas why don't they use Land Rovers ?????) and without it we could go nowhere - merde !!!!! Thankfully there was mobile phone coverage so they called for a replacement which arrived about 30 - 45 minutes later, an inconvenience but nothing too serious. After a seriously bumpy ride we got to the entrance but had to climb a steep, powder soft dune about 30m high to see anything. The view from the top took our breath away, white sand dunes for as far as we could see and in the hollows blue / green lagoons, stunning just stunning. We got a surprise at the edge of the first lagoon, there was a small frog hopping about !!!!! the next surprise was the water - we'd expected it to be warm but it was actually quite cool. The most incredible thing though were the fish - these lagoons are seasonal and dry up in the summer - so where do the fish come from ????? how do they get there ????? (we have no clue on the answers). If you sit still in the water you become surrounded by hundreds of them and they bite !!!!! they're not very big (2 / 3 cm long) but it's not a very nice feeling being fish food.
After a couple of hours exploring, swimming and sunbathing it was time to start back for Sao Luis. We got “home” about 9h30, a long day that will stay in our memories for a long time :-)


Additional photos below
Photos: 11, Displayed: 11


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View From The Top Of The First DuneView From The Top Of The First Dune
View From The Top Of The First Dune

Atsuko with the amazing scenery in the background.
FrogFrog
Frog

Atsuko photographing a frog, how did that get here ?
PicnicPicnic
Picnic

People picnicking by one of the lagoons.


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