Desert or Not? Unravel Lençóis Maranhenses National Park's Mystery

Desert or Not? Unravel Lençóis Maranhenses National Park's Mystery

Lençóis Maranhenses National Park lies is a protected area which lies on the megadiverse Brazil's Atlantic coast. Put abruptly, you will be deceived by your first glimpse at this majestic land and call it a desert, well, only till you find pools of turquoise blue breaking its monotony.Composed of large pristine white sand dunes, Lençóis Maranhenses National Park looks like a typical desert, but is actually a sandy oasis which transforms with the season. 

If you plan to visit the bedsheets of Maranhão, we suggest you read on:

1. Fly to São Luís to reach here

This desert-but-not-a-desert is easily accessible from Maranhão’s capital, São Luís, via public transport which takes you to Barreirinhas, the nearest town to the park. 

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2. Sand dunes punctuated by turquoise lagoons

Calling this place scenic would be an understatement. It is hard to believe that this is not a product of some Photoshop alchemy when you behold an unending stretch of sand beautifully interrupted by turquoise blue pools. The wind and tides and the regular rainy season at the beginning of the year are responsible for creating this masterpiece in sand and water.

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3. Finely crafted sculpted sand dunes

If you choose the visit this place in the dry season, you won’t be disappointed either. The winds and tides brush the sediments in the opposite direction and push the dunes farther into the land, thus creating sculpted sand dunes.

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4. The inhabitants of the lagoons

The ponds which form between the dunes in rainy seasons can be as long as 300 feet and as deep as 10 feet and fish from the nearby rivers nest in these for the season. Wolffish is one such species who bury themselves within the dunes and survive in the wet mud in the dry season and spring to the surface during rains.

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5. Months to visit

These lagoons are the fullest in the months from July to September and attracts the highest number of visitors. A bunch of sightseeing spots are worth a visit as well. It is advised to take a guide to escort you around the park, because it is easy to lose yourself there, literally speaking!

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6.  The Purpose

This place was meant to preserve the ecology of the area. A number of people reside in the park and work as fishermen during the rains.

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7. Getting around

This place makes for a very good camping site as well. You can swim your way around or just walk and soak up the old world charm. Old school ferries, authentic home stays and luxurious resorts. Take your pick!

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Folklore has it that this place was inhabited by Caeté Indians who, one morning, woke up to find out that their town has been covered in sand. Well, we assure you that this has in a way added to the beauty of this place. Happy exploring!

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Anwita Mukherjee is a lawyer by education and has just finished her LLM from Jindal Global Law School. She has worked as a lawyer for a couple of corporate houses and is presently trying to metamorphose into a successful journalist.