Alcântara Travel Guide

  • Praca da Matriz
    Praca da Matriz
    by mircaskirca
  • Alcântara
    by mircaskirca
  • Ilha do Cajual at sunset
    Ilha do Cajual at sunset
    by mircaskirca

Alcântara Things to Do

  • Praca da Matriz

    The main square, Praca da Matriz, gives you an idea of how grand it must have been in its heyday, surrounded by colonial mansions and century old trees. There you find the ruins of its main church, the old jail and the pelourinho, main icons of the colonial and enslaver Brazilian society.In a restored mansion with a fine azulejo frontage is a small...

  • A Stroll Around by the Cobblestone...

    Though I would very much recommend you to stay in Alcantara overnight, it can be also an excellent day trip. All the sights of the town, which seems to be stuck in time, can be visited by foot during a nice walk around by the cobblestone streets. The attractions begin as soon as you get off the boat, in the Porto de Jacare, one of the popular...


    The Capital São Luis is the main point to explore the State of Maranhão, but travellers which comes here are the ones interested to visit the famous sand dunes desert of Lençois Maranhenses, even though, this is not a popular destination in Brazil.In other words, Maranhão is not known among travellers and not as poplar among brazilian tourists.So I...


Alcântara Restaurants

  • Regional Cooking in the Green Area of...

    As I was staying in Pousada dos Guaras, about 1 km from the Centro Historico, I thought it would be most convinient to dine also here. And besides, I've been told that the food they prepare is very good.The restaurant is a wooden structure with a little terrace, beautifully situated in a quiet spot near the water, in the extensive green area of...


    You just have to ask for her name, Batizah, and all the locals know her, she is always ready to help everyone, she is also the person who know about everything about the village's life, and she loves so much welcoming people that she decided to make a restaurant in her own house, which is a big old house right located in the main street named...

  • Alcântara Hotels

    0 Hotels in Alcântara

Alcântara Transportation

  • By Boat from Sao Luis

    The way to reach Alcantara from Sao Luis is by boat. The crossing takes about an hour. A large motorboat, the Diamantina, leaves twice a day (at 7am and 9:30am) from the Terminal Hidroviario on Avenida Beira Mar in Praia Grande. The price was 10 R$ (January 2008).The timetable is subject to change, however, depending on the tide. It is good idea to...


    The cross is quite scenic, you will see all over the coast of Praia Grande and the Canal Entrance right in the mouth of the Bay at Ponta da Areia, the place where the first french colonizers set foot when they first reached our land.It can be very shaky, so if you go sea sick so easy, better take some medicines...The boat is commanded by very...


    At Praia Grande Port close to the city centre of São Luis you can take a morning boat which takes you to Alcantara, it leaves every morning (before 8:00am) when the tyde is high and the same boar returns from Alcantara around 5 in the afternoon, you should pay attention not to miss the returnign boat if you just want to spend one day in Alcantara,...


Alcântara Local Customs

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    Chill Out the Maranhense Way

    by mircaskirca Updated Sep 10, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Soon after my arrival at Pousada dos Guaras I agreed with the boatman about the transfer across the canal to the beach. But after the journey from Sao Luis which started quite early in the morning, I wanted first to relax a bit. I was happy to find my new temporary home had a hammock on the terrace.

    There is no better way to relax than is chill out in a hammock, surrounded by the lush tropical vegetation. A heaven of peace and serenity away from the bustle of the city, just singing of the birds :)

    I brought a little bag of dried shrimps from Sao Luis market. The shrimps have been sun dried and beside being used in regional cooking, they are also a favourite snack in the area. Though I am not really a beer lover, I can agree that it is sometimes the best thing to quench your thirst. And the combination of the two, salty dried shrimps and a cold beer, is something you simply can't resist on a very hot day :)

    dried shrimps & cold beer chill out with the delicious snack in front of my temporary home
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    • Food and Dining

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Alcântara Off The Beaten Path

  • Ilha do Cajual - Spot the Scarlet Ibis

    Every year tens of thousands of migratory shorebirds reach the Maranhense coast. An importing nesting area is found deep in Baia de Sao Marcos, on Ilha do Cajual, home of the Wildlife Research and Conservation Station. An extensive estuarine area surrounding the island is a result of the confluence of the Atlantic Ocean salt water with the...

  • Praia de Itatinga

    Praia de Itatinga is 5 km long stretch of beach with firm and flat sand and shallow waters. When the tide is low, you can get there on foot. But most of the time the beach is only accessible by canoe, departing from Praia da Baronesa (the Baroness Beach), the most popular beach of Alcantara. It's easy to arrange the transfer across the canal with...

  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

Alcântara Favorites

  • Alcantara's Lost Splendour

    As in Sao Luis, there are buildings in Alcantara which date from the 17th century, although not in such great number and not as well preserved. Many have survived only as ruins or as facades with nothing behind them. Pretty well preserved is Alcantara's main church, the impressive Igreja Matriz de Sao Matias on Praca da Matriz.The ruins of...

  • Colonial Architecture

    Charateristic features of Alcantara are its churches and its azulejo-clad houses, bearing witness to a time when the town was a favourite retreat of the landed aristocracy of Maranhao. Alcantara has an outstanding architectural heritage with over 300 colonial buildings that remain virtually untouched. Sobrados (two-storey colonial houses) with iron...

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