Paulino Neves is a tiny town in Maranhão. Mostly a stopover between Parnaíba and Lençóis Maranhenses, it is trying to develop as a destination of its own. Sand dunes and lakes in the surroundings, much easier to access than those of Barreirinhas.
From Sao Luis, take a bus from the Rodoviaria to Barreirinhas.
- Cisne Branco, R$28 one-way
- Departure & arrival times: 0600-1030, 0845-1315, 1400-1830, 1930-0000
The route to Paulino Neves from Barreirinhas is full of great adventure! There does not exist a paved road, and so the route is done using 4x4 trucks which travel on trails that go through the dunes and countryside. The trip varies from 1:30 to 2 hours depending on time of year, because there are trails for winter and summer.
- Barreirinhas to Paulino Neves: R$20.00 only by Toyota 4x4
- Note:These Toyota 4x4 have final destinations of Tutóia, corresponding with onward buses to Parnaíba.
Access from Piauí is much easier because the state has a paved road linking Paulino Neves and Tutóia. The trip varies from 30 to 40 minutes, and can be done with any vehicle.
- Tutóia to Paulino Neves: R$5.00; Toyota and buses every day.
It is fairly easy to find transport along the beach to Caburé. Hiring a truck with driver should be about R$ 150, taking at least 8 people. Otherwise look for a truck gong there to pick up a group. The ride should be R$ 20 per person, -negotiable.
See and Do
Walk the sandy streets. Visit with locals and get a sense of Brazilian culture and simplistic living.
Swim in the river, Rio Novo. If you feel courageous; -jump from the bridge!
Visit Pequenos Lençóis. See the brilliant white sand dunes with fresh water lagoons in the wet season (May-September)
- From the bridge walk north for about 20 minutes to get to the dunes. You don´t need a guide, just ask for "dunas". In the wet season, the road is partly submerged. Fresh water lakes for swimming.
- Arriving at the dunes, turn northeast and walk for another 20 minutes to get to the beach. This gets complicated in the wet season.
- Sleep under the stars and a full moon on the Pequenos Lençois
Kayak to the Mangrove forest. See monkeys and exotic birds.
Relax by the Rio Novo at the few river bars and restaurants.
Take a boat ride on the Rio Novo.
- Ecological Tours & Tourist Information, Rua Deme Trio Ribeiro, 18C (From the church square, cross the bridge that spans Rio Novo and take the first left (the main road through town). Pass through town, about 2-3 blocks, and make a right onto Rua Deme Trio Ribeiro. Walk two blocks and the business is on the right (Next to the empty lot with white fencing).), ☎ +55 98 8423 4982, . 7-days a week, 9am-11pm.. Stop in for information and directions to destinations by foot. The office has two large hand-painted wall maps of the whole region, complete with local trails and travel brochures.
Captain Marin and his fleet of two boats and three kayaks can take you to destinations hidden in Paulino Neves. Rent kayaks and take a tour of the mangrove forest, explore its narrow channels and see families of monkeys and exotic birds unique to this region of Maranhão. Enjoy an authentic churrasquinho on the white sand dunes of Caburé. R$20-R$50.
- Ivaldo, (At the main square). 10 AM till 9 PM. Might close in the late afternoon.. Limited menu. Prato feito R$ 6.
- Rei do Hamburguer, (At the end of the street from the main square). Evenings. Burgers at R$ 3-5.
- Aline, (Just past Rei do Hamburguer).
The locals come together on Wednesdays and Saturdays, -the latter drawing more people. Follow the noise.
- Oásis dos Lençóis (Mazé), (At the main square), ☎ +55 98 3487 1012. Cosy, on the river. Homemade jam for breakfast. Single R$ 25, double R$ 50.
- Vera, (On the Tutóia side of the bridge). Reportedly cheaper and simpler.
Slow internet by the bridge, R$ 2,50/hour.
You can walk a couple of kilometers across the dunes to the beach.