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The town of Santo Amaro is imbedded in the Big Lençois and its 17,000 population lives mainly from fishing. There is little tourism in the region yet mostly due to the difficult access, which is only made possible by a 4x4 traction vehicle.
A cidade fica a 100 km de Barreirinhas, parte do acesso por asfalto e parte por estradas de areia e terra. O tempo de viagem, sem paradas é de aproximadamente 3 horas.
The town is 100 Km distant from Barreirinhas, the access being partly on asphalt and other half via sand and dirt roads. It is a 3-hour trip without stops.
A good route is via Rosarinho and coming back by Bethania and Espigão.
Several tourist points deserve a visit in Santo Amaro. The Lagoa da Gaivota, the largest and most beautiful of the Lençois should not be missed, particularly because it is one of the very few perennial lagoons of the National Park.
The Lagoa do Cajueiro is another must, and Santo Amaro Velho is a settlement that should be visited too, with its lagoons, dunes and a grind mill where the whole process of manioc meal production can be observed. Very instructive.
The Barreira das Pacas, has a mountain that hides a lovely 3-meters high waterfall, and Bethania, another settlement with lagoons, rivers give access to Queimada dos Britos. Farther on is Espigão, a stretch of dunes and river in the middle of woods on the way between Santo Amaro and Barreirinhas.
If you want to have a good bite, look for Dona Delma at the Lagoa do Cajueiro and ask for grilled shrimp, Maranhão's typical fish chowder or buck on coconut milk. It's worth!