Known for being the gateway to the tourist region known as Lençóis Maranhenses, the small town offers great attractions in the midst of nature.

Photo: Geovanne Araujo / Wikimedia Commons

gateway to the Lencois Maranhenses National Park, the small town of barriers 250 km from São Luís it is the best in terms of infrastructure, and best known of the cities that give access to the immense tropical desert.

The city is surrounded by the waters of the Rio Preguiças, which slowly cuts across the region and forms several freshwater beaches with short strips of sand, where locals spend their weekend afternoons cooling off from the high temperatures always present in the region. Its cobbled streets and the ancient architecture of barriers make the destination even more welcoming.

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In the city center, the main restaurants and shops are concentrated close to riverside, which has an immense wooden deck with a small marina, which leads towards a huge dune that during the mornings attract some bathers.

At night, bars and restaurants place their tables all over the street and conquer the clientele with live music and delicious dishes made with spices and ingredients typical of the region. Another gastronomy option is to look for some hotels in the region, most of them have a restaurant open to the public.

There are numerous tours that leave the city towards the natural beauties of this Maranhão territory, in addition to the lagoons and dunes of the Maranhão sheets, other tours offered by boats depart towards the village of Mandacaru, the municipality of Atins and the Cabure beach, a small peninsula of sand that separates river water from sea water.

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Things to do in Barreirinhas

Photo: Otávio Nogueira / Flickr Wikimedia Commons


The edge mounted in front of the Rio Preguiças it concentrates several bars and restaurants that promote live music performances on weekends. It is in the port of Beira Rio that the tour boats depart for Atins, Mandacaru and Praia de Caburé.

Rio Preguiças

One of the main tourist attractions in barriers, The Rio Preguiças has this name because of the large presence of animals in the region. At some points along the river, small strips of sand form freshwater beaches. Several restaurants installed in front of the water flow, work as a beach club and offer a complete structure to visitors, with bathrooms, restaurants, swimming pools and showers.


The fishing village has a 54-meter high lighthouse that allows a beautiful view of the dunes, mangroves, palm trees and cashew trees scattered throughout the region. The Lighthouse was built in 1940 and offers a panoramic view of Mandacaru, Atins, caburé, Rio Preguiças and two Maranhão sheets.

Caburé beach

The area is part of a region nicknamed Pequenos Lençóis. The peninsula has a small hotel structure between the Rio Preguiças and the Atlantic Ocean.


The municipality still little explored by tourists, has sandy streets and a bucolic climate. This is where the dunes of the Lencois Maranhenses National Park.

Lencois Maranhenses National Park

The desert landscapes brushed by hundreds of incredible lagoons in shades of blue form a horizon that seems to have no end. During the rainy season, the lakes are even fuller, reaching up to 2 km in length.

Other attractions to discover in Barreirinhas

  • Mother Church
  • Craftsmanship
  • brooms
  • Floating on the Formiga River in Cardosa
  • Armadillo Bar
  • thickets
  • Ponta do Mangrove
  • Boi Hill
  • Flour House
  • blue Lagoon
  • beautiful lagoon
  • Laguna da Preguiça

How to get to Barreirinhas

Photo: Geovanne Araujo / Wikimedia Commons

By airplane

The closest airport is São Luís, Cunha Machado International Airport, and receives daily flights from the main capitals of Brazil.

By bus

The company Cisne Branco makes the route and has buses that leave twice a day. The trip lasts approximately 4 and a half hours.

By car

To get to Barreirinhas via São Luís it is necessary to take the BR-105 to the municipality of Bacabeira, then take the BR 402 to the municipality.

Best time to visit Barreirinhas

Photo: Mayra Pavanello Munerato / Wikimedia Commons

The unique landscape of Lençóis Maranhenses stands out for its crystalline lagoons, which are formed by the accumulation of rainwater throughout the year. The ponds are supplied during the first half of the year, a period of constant rain in the region.

The best period to get to know the Maranhenses sheetsare between the months of June and September, when the lagoons reach their maximum water level.

Where to stay in Barreirinhas

Photo: Iain and Sarah / Wikimedia Commons

The center of Barreirinhas is where the local commerce, banks, tourist agencies and the port where the tours depart towards the Preguiças River are concentrated. This is the neighborhood with the best structure in the city and has good hotels. THE Hotel Pousada do Buriti, Porto dos Lencois Residence and the Pousada do Riacho are great accommodation options in this part of the city.

If you value moments of privacy and comfort, Pousada Encantes do Nordeste might be the right choice. The accommodation is located a few kilometers from the center of Barreirinhas and has a great structure, with a swimming pool, private chalets and a bar facing the river.

Find accommodation in Barreirinhas.

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