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  • Jericoacoara, Brazil

    Jericoacoara Info and Miniguide

    Jericoacoara is considered to is a beach located in the northeast of Brazil, close to the equator, in the state of Ceará. It was, till about 15 years ago, an isolated fishing village, without any contact with modern civilization. There were no roads, no electricity, no phones, no TV’s, no newspapers, and money was something almost useless, since deals were based on trading fish for goods. Jericoacoara has more then one reason to be considered a paradise. The place is a set of several different sceneries, altogether in a very beautiful and harmonic combination. And not only to be seen, but to be felt. The intense contact with nature, and the sensation of freedom that the place transmits, where every place is so wide, and no kind of behavior is restricted, will mark Jericoacoara forever in your memories. What is there to see and do in Jericoacoara? There are several activities for the visitor in Jericoacoara, to satisfy every taste. From calm hikes and horseback rides to radical sports, such as windsurf or sandboard. There are countless touristic interest sceneries, that sometimes it is hard to believe that they can be so different and be so close to each other.

    Read More about Jericoacoara

    Jericoacoara

    Jericoacoara is a small, picturesque fishing village and a hangout for beach lovers. Jeri, as it is fondly known, is located in the state of Ceará, and lies 300 km west of Fortaleza. Far from the madding crowd you can expect to have a peaceful holiday amongst some of the finest beaches in the region. The beaches are ideal for sand boarding and windsurfing. Jericoacoara was declared an Environmental Protection Area (APA) in 1984, and is a National Park since 2002. These titles bring with it restrictions on buildings and controlled tourism, in order to preserve the area. Jeri is a sharp contrast from what it was two decades where infrastructure was almost non-existent. Until today, local law forbids any illumination of the streets.

    Jericoacoara in Tupi (an indigenous language of the region), that means ‘house of turtles’. The city is well known today for its natural beauty, wildlife, and stunning landscapes. The beach is among the top ten beaches in the world while the city is surrounded by sand dunes and freshwater lagoons, that attract tourists from all over the world. The city is strategically located at the northern tip of Ceará allowing a view of both the east and west side of the ocean. This is the perfect way to the sun rising as well as sun setting into the sea.



    History of Jericoacoara

    Much like the rest of Cearà, Jeri was discovered by Spanish explorer Vicente Pinzon who was a former captain of ‘Nina’, a ship in Christopher Columbus’s fleet. The natives were the Tremembès Indios. Later during the 17th century, Jeri became a fishing village with a population of 500. The hippies were the first to frequent the city in the 1970s. Later the city became popular with backpackers and adventure travel seekers.

    Getting To Jericoacoara

    By Road

    It is not advisable to take your own car since it is most likely to get stuck in the sand dunes. Most buses come in from Fortaleza. The buses are operated by Redenção, who ply the seven hour route three times a day. From Jijoca you need to hop into a jardineira, a lorry with benches, and complete an hour’s journey into Jeri.

    By Air

    A 2500 meter runway is under construction.



    Tourist Attractions in Jericoacoara

    The quaint little fishing village allows you to enjoy life at a slow pace and in a relaxed mood. The absence of bustling streets is surge to change your mood, as you walk across the sand or drive around in a dune buggy. However, there are plenty of places to see and things to do around Jeri. You can enjoy a massage, have delicious meals, sip a drink at a bar, or join in the party at a lively dance club.

    Sunset Dune

    Since the city is located at the tip you can watch the sun rise and sun set from on top of Sunset Dune. A short journey to the west of the village will take you to the point.

    Jeri's Igreja - Church

    The church was built in stone by the locals. From the tower of the church you can have a stunning view of the bay.

    Capoeira

    Many of the locals practice Capoeira, an African martial arts form that uses music and dance in a bid to disguise the fight. The dance was a way for the African slaves to express their desire for freedom from bondage. Stop by the beach and you will find many Capoeiristas gathering for a session. You can arrange for a lesson with one of the artists in the morning or late afternoon.

    Horse Riding in Jericoacoara

    A horse can be rented for around R$ 10.00 per hour and is the best option for short distances trips. You can ride along to the nearby hills, visit the Arched Rock, or try your skills at horse riding along the beach.

    Pedra Furada – The Arched Rock

    The rock is now a symbol of Jericoacoara and offers a great view from all directions. Make sure you wear a good pair of shoes since there are many rocky patches. Between June 15th and July 30th you will be able to witness sun passing right through the middle of the Arch. The rock is an hour’s walk from Malhada Beach.

    Light House

    If you take a horseback riding tour you are likely to stop at Serrote Hill to see the lighthouse. It is also a good spot to see the sunrise. At the lighthouse you will have a 360º view of Jeri.

    Mangue Seco

    The small fishing village is about 5 km from Jeri. The village has a small fresh water lake and was once a mangrove forest. The village got its name, Mangue Seco, meaning ‘dried mangrove’, from the dead mangrove trees.

    Carnival in Jericoacoara

    Keeping up with the tradition of the Rio and Salvador Carnivals, the inhabitants of Jeri have a great time over the week leading up to Lent. Parades, street parties, and samba music have everyone in the city joining in.

    Guriu Village

    Guriu is another small community of fisher folk that is situated at the mouth of a small river. The western boundary of the Environmental Protection Area extends until Guriu. You can hire a boat to take you on a guided tour of the mangroves and catch a glimpse of sea horses that are abundant in the area. You can also hire a raft that carries passenger vehicles across the mouth of the river.

    Tatajuba Village

    The village is 25 km from Jericoacoara and is home to a fresh water lagoon. You can opt for a boat tour or jangada ride or simply laze around in a hammock that dips into the water. Tatajuba is accessible by buggy or 4-wheel drive.

    Night Sky

    The night sky is one of the most impressive sights in Jericoacoara since there is no public lighting allowed according to law. Climb to the top of Sunset Dune and you can have the best view of the night sky. On a full moon night the sea turns silver bright, a sight not worth missing.

    New Years Eve in Jericoacoara

    Apart from the Carnival, New Year’s Eve is the time for the biggest beach party in the world. A massive overhead fireworks display brings in the New Year with a bang, after which the festivities continue all night long along the Main Street and at most clubs and restaurants.

    Lagoa Azul & Lagoa Paraiso

    An hour’s buggy ride through the sand dunes will take you to a fresh water lagoon and the areas known as Lagoa Azul and Paraiso which share the same tranquil waters. A few beach side restaurants can cook up a delicious meal while you relax under a shade palapa.

    Climate in Jericoacoara

    Jericoacoara experiences a warm and pleasant climate all year round with temperatures between 29° and 34°. The best months for windsurfing are July to December where wind speeds can reach up to 40 knots. The rainy season lasts from February until May.

    Practical Information about Jericoacoara

    The best period to visit Jeri is between July and December.

    Shorts, t-shirts, sandals, and a pair of walking shoes are recommended.

    The roads are all sand tracks and the final hour’s journey into Jeri is all along a dirt road.

    There are cyber cafes in the area if you need Internet access.

    Most pousadas and restaurants accept Visa and Master Card. You can exchange dollars or euros for local reais at some hotels and restaurants. However, be prepared for lower rates than banks.

    There are no ATMs in Jericoacoara. The nearest one is in Jijoca, 23 km from Jeri. You can avail of cash advances against your credit card at Tem Tudo, a supermarket, which charges a 10-15% commission.

    Traveler checks are not accepted in Jeri.

    Laundry facilities are available in the town.

    Conditions are ideal for windsurfing from July through until September when wind speeds can reach up to 35 knots.

    There is only a small pharmacy in Jeri that stocks a limited amount of medicines so make sure to carry your first aid kit with you.

    Crime is almost non-existent in Jeri.



    Jeri's Specialties

    Food

    Jericoacoara has a variety of restaurants and cafes that are line the four main streets that lead to the beach. Prices are affordable and you will find plenty of fresh fish dishes, pasta, pizza, meat dishes, and much more. Among the popular restaurants are Tempero da Terra at Rua São Francisco, and Carcará at Rua do Forró 530, a restaurant that is well known for its variety of seafood dishes. Café Brasil at Beco do Guaxelo, 65 is one of the first bar cum restaurants in Jeri. The place is popular for the special breakfasts and sandwiches made from homemade bread. The Sky and Bar Restaurant is open until late and night.

    Windsurfing

    Jericoacoara attracts professional windsurfers from around the world. Club Ventos offers lessons as well as rents equipment for surfers.

    Kayaking

    20 minutes from Jericoacoara is Mangue Seco which is an excellent place for kayaking.

    Surfing

    Undoubtedly, surfing is the most popular sport in Jeri. The waves at Malhada beach are ideal for advanced surfers, while the smaller waves in the bay in front of town are the best spot for beginners. The waves are bigger during December through April. Surfing lessons can be taken from Varãnasi Surf School for around R$ 50,00 to R$ 220,00, depending on the course. Surfboards are also available on rent for about R$ 20,00 per hour.

    Nightlife

    Most of the nightlife in Jeri is centered on the Main Street where the parties pick up at midnight and continue until dawn. There are plenty of bars if you choose to bar hop. You can dance the Forro at an open-air dance club. Alternatively, Cachorro bar and Capitao dos Mares bar are great options.



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