Jericoacoara

Jericoacoara is a small fishing village cum beach hippie resort in Ceará, Brazil, some 300 km west of Fortaleza. Jeri, as it is affectionately known, is the kind of idyllic place where many travelers end up deciding to stay for longer than they had originally planned.

Jericoacoara is a place removed from the hurried modern world of screeching sirens, maniac deadlines, traffic jams and endless lineups. A place where streets are paved with sand, where beaches stretch as far as the eye can see and where warm water marries with palm swaying breezes. Until about 20 years ago, Jericoacoara was still a secluded and simple fishing village. There were no roads, no electricity, no phones, no TV's, no newspapers, and money was rarely used.

Since 1984, the area around Jericoacoara was declared Environmental Protection Area (APA) and became a National Park in 2002. This brought many building restrictions and tourism controls what help to preserve the area. Electricity arrived in the village and today, hot showers and air conditioning are no longer luxury articles. However, illumination of the streets is forbidden by local law.

Get in

By road

Most visitors arrive from Fortaleza, changing vehicles in Jijoca, the nearest town to Jeri with paved roads. Then a 40-80 minutes ride passing through humble rural areas, with cashew-nut trees and farm animals on either side of the road. If coming from the west, Sobral might be a stopover, or use Camocim as your alternative gateway.

Only Fretcar bus company (Fortaleza phone +55 85 3402-2244) can take you from Fortaleza to Jericoacoara, as they recently replaced the Redencao VIP services by their own. From Fortaleza to Jericoacoara: Fretcar offers two VIP buses (5,5 hours from Beira Mar to Jericoacoara / R$57) and one Executivo (7 hours from Rodoviaria to Jericoacoara 18:30h / R$41,65). The VIP buses leave the Rodoviaria (08:00h & 16:00h) and pass at the Airport (08:30h & 16:30h) and the Beira Mar (09:00h & 17:00h), in front of the Praiano Hotel. Near Jijoca you change the bus for a jardineira, a lorry with benches, for the last part of your trip. Purchasing your ticket: In Fortaleza you can purchase your tickets at the main Bus Terminal (Rodoviaria) or at an authorized travel agency. If you are staying at Avenida Beira Mar, Fretcar suggests you to buy your tickets at the Beach Point travel agency (located by the beach opposite from Nautico Atletico Cearense country club. The agency is hard to miss as it features a large Beach Park sign). The travel agency only accepts cash. From Jericoacoara to Fortaleza: Departures with VIP bus from Jericoacoara at 08:00h & 15:00h - Executivo at 22:30. In Jericoacoara, all buses arrive and leave from Global Connection Travel Agency on Rua do Forró. Here you can buy your tickets back to Fortaleza. More info: (88) 9900 2109 / globalconnectionjericoacoara@gmail.com

By plane

The nearest international airport is Pinto Martins in Fortaleza, approx. 280 kilometers south-east of Jericoacoara. Still under construction is a new international airport between Cruz and Jijoca, approx. 30 kilometers from Jericoacoara. The new airport is scheduled to be operational before the end of 2012 however the date has been shifted to the future on a regular basis.

Get around

Jericoacoara is full of sandy pathways and everywhere can be reached by foot. Walking is, in fact, the best way of getting to know Jericoacoara. Only a few streets have names, guide yourself with landmarks and names of shops.

It is recommended that you use footwear, especially on the rocky patches of the beach. Since Jeri doesn’t have any street lamps, a small flashlight can be helpful on those moonless nights. You may occasionally have to share the road with a meandering mule or cow!

See

The Jericoacoara beach is reputedly one of the most beautiful beaches in Brazil, although mostly too shallow for real swimming. It is made of very fine gray sand that gets hard on low tide, and is wide and flat. Every evening a crowd climbs the "Por-do-Sol" dune to watch the sunset over the ocean, a rare view in Brazil, as very little of its coast faces west.

Be sure to make a day trip at least up to Lagoa Azul - amongst stunning freshwater lagoons. There are authentic and unspoilt villages nearby where you can stay, if you want to get off the beaten track. for example.

Do

Jeri is full of things to do for the active and extreme as well as for those who wish to relax and recharge.

Contact Ivonne for Salsa, Samba, Afroaxe as well. 30 Reais.

Buy

Just along the main street, towards the beach, there are many handicraft shops where you can buy jewelry, souvenirs, etc.:

Also, there are many narrow streets where you can find:

etc...

Eat

Although Jericoacoara has only four main streets (all leading to the beach), it hosts a wonderful variety of restaurants and cafés. There's pizza, pasta, meat, fresh fish dishes, crepes, tapioca, and all at very affordable prices. It might take you some time for your stomach to get used to regional seasoning and water. So if you don't want to spend your holidays on the toilet, choose bars and restaurants where hygiene is evident.

Drink

The best place to party is down the main road, at the beach. If you have a weak stomach, then buy your drinks at bars and restaurants. You can also try drinks from the barracas, you will find dozens of them lined up along the street. Of course the standard drink is a Caipirinha. You can also have a Caipiroska (which is the same as caipirinha but prepared with vodka instead of cachaça), or a variant based on another fruit than lemon, e.g. maracujaroska, which has vodka with maracuja (AKA passion fruit).

Sleep

This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget Under R$50
Mid-range R$ 50-150
Splurge Over R$150

Dozens and dozens of hotels and inns in all price ranges.

Budget

Wi-Fi connection is available to use with own laptop. You will be able to use our kitchen for self-catering and BBQ area as well. Your home away from home! Single R$ 40 to R$ 60.

Mid-range

Splurge

Stay healthy

The small pharmacy in Jeri has a limited stock of medications.

Connect

Cope

Go next

It is possible to charter a dune buggy to virtually anywhere. They will take you to the fresh water lagoons for about R$ 30 per person.

Innumerable fresh water pools, or lagoons, are located throughout the expanses of dunes that surround Jeri. Near the village there are only small pools mostly frequented by cows and horses. However, if you venture into the dunes, you will soon find lagoons and small rivers running as far as the eye can see in the "valleys" that lie between the dunes. The bottom of these pools is sandy, which makes them excellent for swimming, wading, and water sports. Near constant winds make the lagoons a favorite spot for wind surfing. Because the sand constantly changes shape and alters the landscape, the locations of the pools change as well. To discover a favorite swimming spot in one of these lagoons is to carve out a unique and ephemeral natural experience that is only more beautiful for the fact that it can't be repeated next year.

You can go to the Lençois Maranhenses from Jeri although it is much easier to get there from São Luis. From Jeri there are two main options:

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, September 09, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.