Feet on Sand
Brazilians have an expression for accomodation located right on the beach: pé na areia, or feet on sand. In Jericoacoara (Zher-ee-kwah-KWAH-ruh), however, this definition applies to the whole village. All streets are made of sand: the village is attached to a national dunes park.
Isolated by the sand, Jericoacoara used to be a quiet fishing village known by just a few hippies in the outmost western part of the state of Ceará. Everything began to change in 1987, when the Washington Post Sunday supplement included Jericoacoara in a story featuring three exotic beaches in unfamiliar spots on the planet. When the news arrived in Brazil it was a tad blown up – a Brazilian magazine wrote that Jericoacoara had been chosen one of the ’10 most beautiful beaches in the world’ by the Washington Post. (There is also a variant with the New York Times instead of the Post).
Jericoacoara became so famous, it has now a nickname: Jeri. Today its beaches are an international hub to windsurfers and kitesurfers, who have helped ignite a scene of charming inns and cosmopolitan restaurants, many of them run by expatriates. Jeri isn’t either a quiet place anymore. Every night there’s an open-air beach party at the end of Rua Principal. The former ecological sanctuary nowadays is a party beach town.
The good new is, traffic has been finally controlled. Cars must be kept at the parking lot at the village’s entrance, and motorcycles don’t rumble through the beachfront anymore.
Even with all these changes, Jeri’s trademark still stands: the majestic Duna do Pôr do Sol (Sunset Dune), a small Mount Fuji made of sand on the southern side of the beach. There, afternoons end under applause as soon as the sun sets.
Jeri has also other postcards: the intriguing Pedra Furada (Rock with a Hole), a 40-minute walk from the village, and the Jijoca freshwater lagoon beaches, 20 km away (12 miles).
The beaches in Jijoca are known for their hammocks that hover the lagoon crystal-clear waters and white sands — and they are beautiful enough to fuel the Washington Post rumour.
Why Include Jeri In Your Trip
- Nice mix of rustic and cosmopolitan
- Fun nights
- Great for kitesurfing, windsurfing and stand up paddle
Keep in mind
- Gentrification is accelerating
- Jijoca has the best beach
When To Go
The weather is rainy in the first six months and dry and sunny in the rest of the year. It is never cold. Temperature lows are always above 22°C (71°F) and highs between 30°C (86°F) and 35°C (95°F).
The best time to visit is from June to December.
The high season runs from July through February, and it includes the windsurf-kitesurf season (August through December), Brazilian school holidays (July and January), and Carnival week (usually in February).
The lagoons in Jijoca are deeper between June and October, an effect of the rainy weather in the first months of the year. If you don’t sail, go in June, the most cost-effective month in Jeri: it’s already sunny but the wind guests (and higher prices) have not arrived yet. If you’re following the Rota das Emoções (‘The Thrilling Route’, a road that cuts through the states of Piauí, Maranhão and Ceará) and your travel plans include Jericoacoara and the Lençóis Maranhenses, it’s best to go between June and the beginning of September, when there’s a higher chance of catching full lagoons in both locations.
Typically, the rainiest months are March and April. It doesn’t rain as much in May, but you might get more cloudy days than you’d expect.
When Is Beach Season In Jericoacoara?
Almost no rain: July | August| September | October | November | December
Possibly rainy: January | June
Likely rainy: February | May
Definitely rainy: March | April
How Many Days In Jericoacoara?
Minimum: 3 days. You’ll be able to spend one day at the Jijoca lagoon, trek to Pedra Furada, do the sand buggy tour to the West — and recover from the exhausting trip from Fortaleza.
Ideal: 4-5 days. The longer you stay, the more you relax and get into the local vibe.
Getting to Jericoacoara
Flying into Jeri
Jericoacoara now has its own airport, open for regular flights since August 2017. Azul airlines operates four flights weekly from Recife and one from Campinas, connecting with major cities. Gol will fly every Saturday from São Paulo (Congonhas airport) starting December 6th; tickets are already on sale.
The airport is 32 km (20 miles) away from Jericoacoara village. Private transfers by SUV cost R$ 240 one-way up to 4 passengers and take the Preá beach route (including 12 km/8 miles on a sand trail). There is also shared SUV transfers available upon arrival for R$ 60 per passenger. The cheapest way to get to Jeri is by regular taxi to Jijoca (12 km/8 miles; R$ 60, up to 4 passengers), then transferring to a jardineira (passenger pick-up truck) for R$ 20 more per passenger (the final 20-km/15-mile stretch on a sand trail).
Flying into Fortaleza
Most visitors get to Jericoacoara via Fortaleza (300 km/187 miles away), due to more flight options and cheaper fares. Fortaleza is connected by daily nonstop flights to Rio, São Paulo, Brasília, São Luís, Belém, Natal, Recife, Salvador, Campinas, and Belo Horizonte. From abroad there are regular nonstop flights from Lisbon (TAP), Frankfurt (Condor), Miami (Latam), Buenos Aires (Gol), and Bogotá (Avianca).
You can go to Jericoacoara straight from Fortaleza airport.
Fortaleza-Jericoacoara by bus
At R$ 81 one way, the bus is the cheapest way to get from Fortaleza to Jericoacoara. Fretcar runs 4 buses daily, leaving Fortaleza Airport with stops at Fortaleza Bus Station, Hotel Praiano on Av. Beira-Mar, and Jijoca, where passengers transfer to jardineiras (pick-up trucks) for the last 20 km (15 miles) on a sand trail. Total journey time from the airport is about 7 hours. In Jericoacoara you get off at our pousada. (But on the way back to Fortaleza, you’ll board your jardineira in front of Fretcar’s office on Rua São Francisco.)
Tickets can be bought online, or at any Fretcar office. There’s a 24-hour booth at Fortaleza Airport arrivals lounge, and an office at the hotel zone (operating out of a modified shipping container on Av. Beira-Mar beach promenade #2985, across the street from Náutico Clube). Buy your ticket at least 2-3 days in advance, because buses can be sold out.
When buying your ticket online, keep in mind that the departure times informed are the ones from the Bus Station; buses leave Fortaleza Airport 30 minutes earlier, and pick up passengers at Hotel Praiano 20 to 30 minutes later than scheduled times. The 4am bus leaves the airport by 3.30am and passes by Hotel Praiano at 4.20am. The 7.15am bus leaves the airport at 6.45am and stops by Hotel Praiano around 7.45am. The 2.45pm bus departs from the airport at 2.15pm and picks up passengers at Hotel Praiano around 3.15pm. The 6.30pm bus leaves the airport at 6pm and doesn’t stop at Hotel Praiano. Also note that you’ll have to drop by a Fretcar office (at the airport or the beach promenade) to print out your ticket (you can’t board with your confirmation email only).
Fortaleza-Jericoacoara by 4×4 SUV
Private or shared SUV transfers are the quickest way to get to Jericoacoara. You’ll be picked up at the airport or at your hotel in Fortaleza and taken to your pousada in Jeri. The journey takes 5 hours, with no need to change cars in Jijoca or Preá.
Have your pousada arrange the transfer (you’ll probably be offered one with your booking confirmation email). Shared 4×4 SUV transfers cost R$ 150 per passenger. Shared SUV transfers are more easily arranged on the way back from Jeri to Fortaleza. A private transfer costs R$ 600 one way for up to 4 passengers.
You can book online with TourOn:
- Private transfer from Fortaleza to Jericoacoara
- Private transfer from Jericoacoara to Fortaleza
- Private transfer in/out from Fortaleza to Jericoacoara
The Last Stretch: On the Sand
Roads are paved only until Jijoca village or Preá beach. From either place, the final stretch of the trip is on a sand trail. There are two routes.
From Jijoca, through the dunes. Buses and regular cars stop at Jijoca, where the bus station has a big car parking lot attached. From there, adapted pick-up trucks (the jardineiras) set off to Jericoacoara through a 20-km (14-mile) trail among the dunes. The fare is R$20; jardineiras departure as soon as there are 12 passengers, day and night. They may also stop by pousadas or restaurants at Jijoca lagoon. Since the route crosses Jericoacoara national park, only accredited vehicles can go this way.
From Preá, through the beach. 4×4 SUVs and regular cars with adventurous drivers go to Preá seaside village and take the 12-km (8-mile) shortcut along the beach. Private cars must stop at the parking lot at the entrance of the village.
From/To Lençóis Maranhenses
Improved road conditions make it easier now to roll Jericoacoara and Lençóis Maranhenses into one trip. Barreirinhas, Lençóis Maranhenses’ unofficial capital, is 400 km (250 miles) west of Jericoacoara.
You can add stops on the way at Barra Grande do Piauí (a charming kitesurf village, 180 km/112 miles west of Jeri) and Parnaíba (home to the largest open-sea river delta in the Americas, 200 km/125 miles west of Jeri), thus completing the full Rota das Emoções (the ‘Thrilling Route’) itinerary.
Lençóis Maranhenses should be visited between mid-June and mid-September. Read more about it here.
Jericoacoara-Lençóis Maranhenses by 4×4 SUV
4×4 SUV transfers can be arranged through your pousada. A private transfer either way between Jericoacoara and Barreirinhas costs arond R$ 1,000-R$ 1,200 for up to 4 people. Shared SUV transfers (at R$ 300 per person) are possible, but require a minimum of 4 passengers. The 400-km (250-mile) journey to Barreirinhas takes 7 hours.
Jericoacoara-Barra Grande-Parnaíba-Lençóis Maranhenses by RotaCombo
Operating since late 2016, RotaCombo is the first regular air-conditioned bus service connecting all four destinations of the Rota das Emoções. Every leg of the itinerary is offered three times a week (no service on Sundays) and can be booked separately online.
- Jericoacoara-Barra Grande: Mo, We, Fr; departure between 8.30am and 9.30am; 40 minutes by passenger truck to Jijoca, then 3-hour trip; R$ 100 per passenger
- Barra-Grande-Jericoacoara: Mo, We, Fr; departure at 7.30am; 3-hour trip to Jijoca, followed by a 4-hour stop at Jijoca lagoon for lunch (not included in the price); then 40 more minutes by passenger truck to Jericoacoara; R$ 100 per passenger
- Jericoacoara-Parnaíba: Mo, We, Fr; departure btw 8.30am and 9.30am; 40 minutes by passenger truck to Jijoca, then 4-hour trip; R$ 100 per passenger
- Parnaíba-Jericoacoara: Mo, We, Fr; departure btw 5.30am and 6.30am; 4-hour trip to Jijoca, followed by a 4-hour stop at Jijoca lagoon for lunch (not included in the price); then 40 more minutes by passenger truck to Jericoacoara; R$ 100 per passenger
- Barra Grande-Parnaíba: Mo, We, Fr; departure btw 1.30pm and 2.30pm; 1-hour trip; R$ 75 per passenger
- Parnaíba-Barra Grande: Mo, We, Fr; departure btw 5.30am and 6.30am; 1-hour trip; R$ 75 per passenger
- Parnaíba-Barreirinhas: Tu, Th, Sa; departure btw 5.30am and 6.30am; 4-hour trip (last 40 km/25 miles between Paulino Neves and Barreirinhas by passenger truck); R$ 100 per passenger
- Barreirinhas-Parnaíba: Tu, Th, Sa; departure btw 7am and 8am; 4-hour trip (first 40 km/25 miles to Paulino Neves by passenger truck); R$ 100 per passenger
By local transportation (Toyota and bus)
If you’re travelling on a really tight budget, or if there’s no Rota Combo transfer scheduled on the day you need it, you might resort to local transportation. But bear in mind that some legs of the trip will be hard to coordinate, requiring some negotiation (in Portuguese) along the way.
- Jericoacoara-Parnaíba: hop on a jardineira (40-minute trip, R$ 20) in time to catch the 12.30pm Fretcar bus to Camocim (1.5-hour trip; R$ 15). At Camocim board the 3.30 pm Expresso Guanabara bus to Parnaíba (2-hour trip; R$ 20).
- Parnaíba-Jericoacoara: the trip has three legs. First you hop on the 7.15am or 9.30am Expresso Guanabara bus headed to Camocim (2-hour trip; R$ 20). At Camocim take the 11.30am or 12pm Fretcar bus to Jijoca (1.5-hour trip; R$ 15). Once at Jijoca, catch the next jardineira (passenger truck) to Jericoacoara (40-minute trip, R$ 20).
- Parnaíba-Barra Grande: Damasceno buses depart from the Fontenele travel agency in downtown Parnaíba (av. Capitão Claro, 91, close to Senai; tel. 86/994-882-931). From Monday through Friday, buses depart at 10.30am, 2.00 pm, and 4.30 pm (the 2.00 pm stops at the bus station). On Saturdays, there is only one bus which leaves at 2pm (also stops at the bus station). No buses on Sundays or holidays. The 2-hour trip costs R$ 13 one way.
- Barra Grande-Parnaíba: Damasceno buses depart Mon through Friday at 6am, 6.30am and 11.45am; Saturday at 6.30 pm. No buses on Sundays or holidays. The 2-hour trip costs R$ 13 one way.
- Parnaíba-Barreirinhas: catch the 5am Real Sul bus to Tutóia (R$ 20, 3-hour trip). The Toyotas that go to Paulino Neves will be waiting at Tutóia bus station Mon-Sat. 1.5 hours later you’ll change to another Toyota that will take 1 hour more to Barreirinhas. The combined Toyota trips cost R$ 30 per passenger.
- Barreirinhas-Parnaíba: Toyotas heading to Paulino Neves leave Mon-Sat, betwen 8am and 9am, from the main street (point of reference: Dona Dulce restaurant). This first leg takes about 1 hour. In Paulino Neves you’ll be transfered to another Toyota bound to Tutóia (40 min.) Both legs combined cost R$ 30 per person and can be arranged on spot or booked ahead through WhatsApp (Portuguese only): +55-98/996-039-445 or +55-98/984-100-853. Upon arriving in Tutóia, you go on to Parnaíba either by bus (3-hour trip, R$ 20) or shared taxi (1.5-hour trip, R$ 120-R$ 150 split between up to 4 passengers)
Where to Stay In Jericoacoara
Jericoacoara may be small — just five sandy streets leading to the sea — but it’s not wise to stay too far from the beachfront. Walking on streets made of sand is no easy task, especially under the midday sun or late in the evening.
However, if you’d like to stay away from the buzz for a little while, consider spending a couple nights by the lagoon in Jijoca or among kitesurfers at Preá beach.
The front row contains (and how could it not be) the most expensive real estate in town — but even here there’s a bargain or two to be found.
Vila Kalango has the best architecture of any pousada in Jeri, blending beautifully in the landscape. You can choose among cabins built on stilts, with natural ventilation, or the more conventional rooms on firm land with ar conditioning. The pool deck has a view of the beach and the dune.
Right next to it, the conspicuous Essenza is a monument to Jeri’s gentrification. The ground floor is entirely surrounded by a pool (you can dip in right from your balcony), while every room on the second floor features its own individual infinity pool (complete with glass walls). It surely appeals to a fancier crowd –- which posts rave reviews on booking websites.
Blue Residence has serviced apartments with modern furniture, fully equipped kitchens, and a discreet layout in white. Most apartments sit at the back of the building, with no sea view.
Rustic-chic twins Casa de Areia and Casa na Praia have lovely rooms and cosmopolitan flair, not to mention the most charming beach furniture around. If you have sensitive ears, avoid the front rooms — the loud nightly open-air beach party nearby can make sleep difficult.
Open in 2003, My Blue Hotel was the first property of the Blue-Essenza hotel empire. Unlike Essenza, though, its sheer size and Mediterranean looks are conveniently hidden from the beach: most apartments are tucked around a courtyard (where the pool is). The ones on the first floor offer very little privacy: the door is the window itself. If possible, choose one on the second floor. The main entrance is on the back street — which is Jeri’s restaurant row.
If you want to wake up at a beachfront acommodation without splurging, consider two pousadas that offer humble rooms and rather affordable fares. Capitão Thomas, one of the oldest inns in the village, features a nice pool. Ponta da Pedra is a recent addition and serves breakfast with an amazing beach view.
Sitting discreetely at the northernmost end of the beach, Jeribá has cozy rooms and a lovely pool in the back of the property. Bonus points for being next door to Club Ventos, Jeri’s nicest beach club.
The remaining two beachfront hotels face north into Praia Malhada; they are reached through Rua da Igreja.
Chili Beach, with only six rooms, is the coolest hotel in town. Although you may say it feels more Ibiza than Brazil, there’s a rustic character to it that mingles well with the surroundings. If you’re not staying here, do come for a drink around sunset.
Right next to it, the Hurricane Jeri consists of two wings facing each other across an alley that leads to the pool and the beach. Wood paneling (in some suites) and thatched roofs help create a beach-y look.
Rua São Francisco and Rua das Dunas
Rua São Francisco is a very strategic location: the jardineira stop to Jijoca is here (across the Fretcar office).
If you care for rustic design but can’t afford a stay at Chili Beach, consider Pousada Pescador, its moderately-priced sister inn at Rua São Francisco. There are only five (compact) rooms overlooking a busy restaurant alley — but don’t worry, the noise ceases before midnight. The sandy-floored little restaurant is Pinterest-worthy.
Across the street, Surfing Jeri offers rooms in two-storey cottages with hammocks in every balcony.
Tucked away in an quiet alley between São Francisco and Dunas streets is the Pousada Ibirapuera. One of Jeri’s most traditional inns, its rooms are just OK — but the pool is delightful, staff are atentive and prices are great value.
Pousada Cabana, on Rua das Dunas, is another old-timer that kept improving over the years. Here a wooden walkway leads through a row of well-appointed cabanas. The hammocks out in the garden and the sauna connected to the little pool are welcome pluses.
Rua Principal and Rua do Forró
Mona Lisa is one of the newest pousadas in Jeri. Operating out of the second floor of Leonardo da Vinci restaurant, it features pleasant, airy rooms, mostly done in white. Location couldn’t be handier, at the final (and pedestrian-only) stretch of Rua Principal.
A mere half a block away from the beach at Rua do Forró, WindJeri has rooms with balconies around a good swimming pool. There’s a Japanese restaurante (Kaze) on the premises.
Open in 2016 in an alley between Rua do Forró and Rua Principal, Vila Métisse exhudes charm with its décor in white, green, and wood. An old leafy tree in the patio provides poolside shade.
For some serious beach relaxation, take one or to two days off to stay lagoonside at Jijoca. Longer stays are possible, too: jardineiras pick up and drop off passengers at lagoon restaurants and pousadas en route between Jijoca town and Jeri, so you won’t be totally cut off from civilization. All you have to do is ask your receptionist to make a call (on the way back, just go to the jardineira stop at Rua São Francisco). Regular dune buggy tours are also available for guests staying at Jijoca.
I’m a big fan of Pousada do Paulo, one of Jijoca’s early settlers. Its cottages are comfortable enough, and the food is really delicious — both the Italian and the Brazilian parts of the menu. Unlike some of its neighbors, Pousada do Paulo doesn’t accept large tour groups to spend the day, so peace and quiet are guaranteed. Prices are very reasonable, too.
Praia do Preá
Praia do Preá is kitesurfing heaven. But if you’re not a kitesurfer yourself, there’s one reason to stay there. The reason is called Rancho do Peixe — in my opinion, the most amazing beach hotel in Brazil. Rancho do Peixe takes its sister Vila Kalango concept to dazzling heights, with wood and thatch huts on stilts that boast natural ventilation and mingle just perfectly with the enviroment. It’s beach architeture at its very best, with a decor to match. A large swimming pool is discreteely laid out, not visible from the beach. The restaurant is as good as any in Jeri — and you can check the kitsurf action while sipping caipirinhas at the neat beach bar. There’s free transportation to Jeri at 4pm, returning by 10pm -– you’ll be able to watch the sunset on top of the dune, have dinner and return to the peace and quiet of Preá.
Where To Eat In Jericoacoara
Jeri’s food scene is diverse — both in terms of cuisine as well as price tags. The more upscale places usually serve individual dishes, but at cheaper joints sharing is the norm. You can always ask for a half-portion, or meia-porção (MAY-uh por-SOWNG).
Many restaurants open only in the evening. By lunchtime, look for restaurants by the beach.
Club Ventos (tel. 88/3669-2288), at the northern end of the main beach, is the place to go for a high-quality lunch pay-by-the-kilo style. You help yourself at the buffet and weigh your plate on a scale; the bill is set accordingly. There’s a wide selection of fresh salads, as well as varied hot dishes, including all Brazilian sides. Choose wisely and you’ll have a healthy, balanced meal.
The sun loungers at Pousada Vila Kalango (tel. 88/3669-2289) are only available to guests, but its restaurant is open to the public. It’s the best place to have lunch with a (dune) view.
If you’re spending the day in Jijoca, choose Pousada do Paulo‘s restaurant (tel. +55-88/3669-1181) for its peace and quiet, and also for its food: Paolo, the Italian owner, prepares great pasta, fish, and seafood dishes.
Should you fancy a lounge-y atmosphere, though, head straight to Alchymist Beach Club (tel. 85/998-158-656), where the food comes with a DJ. Food and beverage are more expensive here than elsewhere by the lagoon.
A quick stroll will help you choose your restaurant for the evening.
Let’s start by the ‘corner’ of Rua Principal and the beach. Turn right and you’ll come across Naturalmente (tel. 85/997-006-116), a crêperie that is a Jeri classic. On the menu, savory and sweet crêpes that make for a wholesome meal.
Following Rua Principal you’ll find the most hyped restaurant in the village: Bistrô Caiçara (tel. 88/996-253-873). Chef Apolinário Souza does a mean octopus with spicy sugarcane honey.
Next door is Na Casa Dela (tel. 88/997-178-649), Jeri’s loveliest restaurant, with funky décor and tables set in the backyard. Try the escondidinho (es-con-gee-GEEN-yo), shredded jerk beef under yucca mash.
Close to main square, Leonardo da Vinci (tel. 88/3669-2229) has been around forever and offers good pasta, fresh fish and Argentinian beef.
Turning left at the square, you’ll get to Travessa Ismael, Jeri’s little restaurant row.
It’s worth waiting in line to get a table at Tamarindo (tel. 88/996-765-817). Although the menu is not long, it may prove difficult to choose between the fish in tamarind sauce, the thai prawns (in coconut milk) or the sesame-crusted tuna confit.
Across the street, The Lab (+55-88/996-083-141) is famous for good ceviche and high prices.
The side alley will take you to Rua da Igreja and Chili Beach‘s charming restaurant. Arrive by sunset for drinks and follow it up with dinner.
Now back to the main square: turning right at the first alley, Beco Doce, the smell of grilling burgers will take you directly to Eat on the Streets, a burger joint that feels like a food truck.
On the corner at Rua São Francisco, Pimenta Verde (tel. 88/999-160-577) does good ceviche, moqueca (Brazilian fish stew cooked with palm oil and coconut milk) and a variety of pasta and risotto dishes. Eggplant parmigiana is a delicious starter.
Back on Rua Principal and walking inland, look for Kafila (tel. 88/997-549-821) on your left handside: it has good Middle Eastern snacks. Esfihas (Lebanese empanadas) and kibes (ground meat-and-wheat fritters) please the Brazilian customers, while foreigners go for the kebabs and falafel.
On an alley at your right handside, Freddyssimo (tel. 88/997-798-357) stands out for its original concept: it’s an appetizer-only restaurant. You get to choose between 20 items (mostly Italian antipasti or Middle Eastern mezze); it’s possible to order them separately or combined into a 4 or 8-item plate. Should you care for main course, there’s always shrimp spaghetti.
Further away at Rua Principal, La Tarantella (tel. 999-917-612)f is one of those simple Italian canteens that don’t impress at first sight until you notice the chef’s accent: the pasta is veramente Italian, done al dente (firm to the bite); and the prices are reasonable, too.
Whatever your choice, skip dessert and get back to main square after dinner, where Gelato & Grano waits you with the best ice-cream in Jeri. Try local flavors like tapioca and açaí.
Things to Do in Jericoacoara
The beach in front of the village has shallow water, with intermittent albeit harmless waves during windy season (August-December), when it’s great for winsdsurfing, kitesurfing and SUP. Tidal variation is big, especially during full and new Moons. When venturing into the sea, beware of windsurfers.
A pair of beach chaises complete with sunshade rent for R$ 5 per hour. But you can throw your towel or canga anywhere and stay as long as you wish for free. Additionally there are beach bars on north side of the cove (the opposite end of the Sunset Dune). Beachfront hotels also have chaises for their guests.
At the far northern end of the beach you’ll find the coolest spot to spend a day in the sun: Club Ventos. Sitting on a low ravine, it is a vantage point to watch the windsurfing (and SUP) action. Great lunch buffet too.
The pictures of white-sand, Caribbean-clear Jericoacoara beaches you see around were all taken on the fresh water lagoons of Jijoca, 20 km away from Jeri village. It’s actually just one lagoon that during dry season ends up divided into two.
The stretch known as Lagoa do Paraíso (Paradise Lagoon), close to Jijoca town, is the one to choose. It has proper beach restaurants scattered along one bank, complete with palapas and swim-up hammocks. Best picks out of the bunch are Pousada do Paulo (tel. +55-88/3669-1181), if you want peace and quiet and good food, and Alchymist Beach Club (tel. 85/998-158-656), if you fancy a lounge-y atmosphere.
To get to any location at Lagoa do Paraíso, head to the jardineira stop at Rua São Francisco; the next one sets off as soon as it gets 12 passengers. On their way back do Jeri, jardineiras pick up passengers at Jijoca lagoon restaurants — just have your lagoon restaurant make a call. Fare is R$ 20 one way.
The other stretch, known as Lagoa Azul (Blue Lagoon), close to Preá beach, is way less appealing: three straight dry years turned the water a bit muddy. The kiosks are humble and the landscape is spoiled by cars and dune buggies parked on the sand. It’s a regular stop of the dune buggies’ East tour.
It’s kitsurfers’ heaven — an open-sea beach with no further attractions besides the kitesurfing ballet.
Sunset On The Dune
It’s a ritual repeated every late afternoon: around 4.45pm, visitors stop whatever they’re doing and head to the Duna do Pôr-do-Sol (Sunset Dune). From afar, they look like small ants in line climbing a rock. The sun begins to set around 5.30pm. Its descent is at first slow, but around 6.00pm it picks up speed until it disappears in the sea under applause.
The full experience include sandboard down the dune (‘esquibunda’, or butt-ski, as Brazilians call it). When the spectacle ends, people usually climb down the front side of the dune, creating small avalanches. (Don’t worry: the wind recomposes the original shape in no time.)
Trek To The Pedra Furada Rock
The Pedra Furada (Rock with a Hole) is the most iconic Jeri postcard. Getting there involves a 40-minute walk from north end of the village beach. The path near the sea, however, can only be taken during low tide; during high tide, you’ll have to use the Morro do Serrote (Serrote Hill) trail. It’s best to go in the morning, when the sun shines directly over the rock, resulting in better photos; in July instead, go at sunset, for during this month the sun sets straight through the rock’s hole. The Pedra Furada is usually included in the dune buggies’ East tour. You can also go there on horseback.
Dune Buggy Tours
Dune buggy tours are all the rage with Brazilian (and South American) visitors; many can’t imagine going to a beach in the North-east without racing through the sands. It must be noted, though, that Brazilian buggies are quite unsafe: there are no seat belts whatsoever, and speeding is the norm.
That said, there are two main circuits.
The 6-hour West Tour is the most diverse. It takes you first to Mangue Seco mangroves, where you can take a canoe ride to see a seahorse colony. After crossing Guriú river by raft, there’s lunch stop at Tatajuba lake. On the way back to Jeri, you’ll go up and down the dunes at the national park area, arriving in time to applaud sunset at the Pôr do Sol dune. The price for up to 4 passengers range between R$ 300-R$ 350; the canoe ride is R$ 15 extra per person, and lunch is not included in the price.
The 5-hour East Tour stops by Instagram-ready Pedra Furada (Rock with a Hole) and Árvore da Preguiça (Lazy Tree) landmarks before visiting both Lagoa Azul and Lagoa do Paraíso in Jijoca. A buggy for up to 4 passagers will cost between R$ 270-R$ 300. You can negotiate an extension to Barrinha, a lagoon nestled among the dunes a little bit further than Preá Beach.
Content by | ViajeNaViagem.com