Amazing Lencois Maranhenses National Park

In Brazil, there is a unique place, which surprises even Brazilians. This is Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, located in north-eastern Brazil, in the State of Maranhão.

Composed of large, white, sweeping dunes, at first glance Lençóis Maranhenses looks like an archetypal desert. In fact it isn’t actually a desert. Lying just outside the Amazon basin, the region is subject to a regular rain season during the beginning of the year. The rains cause a peculiar phenomenon: fresh water collects in the valleys between sand dunes, spotting the desert with blue and green lagoons that reach their fullest between July and September.

source: inthesitymad

source: raizdedois

The National Park is quite extensive and has no access roads. Because of the nature of the park’s protected status, most vehicles are not permitted access. Entrance to the park is made exclusively by 4-wheel drive trucks.

preceding three photos by Sylvain Bourdos

It encompasses roughly 1000 square kilometers, and despite abundant rain, supports almost no vegetation. The area is also surprisingly home to a variety of fish which, despite the almost complete disappearance of the lagoons during the dry season, have their eggs brought from the sea by birds.

source: Tio Mobius

source: Fred Schinke

source: doctor paradox

source: Sylvain Bourdos

source: doctor paradox