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Maranhão : Atins
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Nestled in between the dunes of the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, the delta of the Rio Preguiças, a little contributory creek (Igarapé), and the Atlantic Ocean’s coastline, Atins is a place of pure tranquility and simple life bliss. Given its secluded setting people also like to refer to it as ‘the island’, and it certainly feels like one.

In Atins you won’t find streets or any conventional pavement; here life sets place in a large sand pit. Mobile phone connectivity is patchy and Internet access is limited, electricity arrived only a few years ago and credit cards only start be seen in some places. Removed from the hurried world of civilisation, Atins offers endless dunes, sandy beaches as far as the eye can see, warm shallow waters, swaying palm trees and a constant, soothing sea breeze.

A destination for the adventurous traveller, Atins is the ideal base camp from where to explore the famous Lençóis Maranhenses due to its immediate access to both the park and the sea. It’s also the perfect Kiteboard spot offering huge sheltered lagoons with flat waters and steady and reliable cross/onshore winds of 15-30 knots.

How to get there[edit]

From Barreirinhas:

  • 4x4 Pick-up on off-road pistes passing through part of the Lençóis Maranhenses. Leaving between 10am - 11am, sometimes there's a second departure from 1pm - 3pm. Takes about 1-2 hours, R$25.
  • Boat trip: Catch a ride on one of the many trips down the Rio Preguiças stopping by in Vassouras, Mandacarú and Caburé. Leaves around 8am - 9am in the morning, 5 hours, R$80.
  • Hire a private boat for R$300-400, 1 hour


  • Kiteboarding:

Atins was named as one of the Top 4 Kiteboarding flatwater spots in the world in Kitesurfing Magazine. Between July and December boarders will find ideal conditions in Atins. During this time the vast and sparsely populated beaches are met by constant cross on-shore winds of 15 to 30 knots.

Beginners can practice in the huge lagoon in calm and flat waters sheltered by two natural sandbanks whilst the more experienced can venture out to the open sea, where you might find 1.5 – 2.5m waves at the right tide.

Other options for boarders include the calm waters of the Preguiças River or the inland lagoons in the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, the size of which depend on the rains and time of the year (the rainy season generally runs from January to June).

Atins has a small Kiteboarding community of riders and experienced instructors, equipment rentals and guided adventures.

  • Tours & treks

Tours & treks from Atins are typically of low carbon footprint nature; you either walk or ride on horseback. Tours often include a ride by specially licensed 4×4 to get into the National Park.

In the last couple of years, Quad tours from Barreirinhas have become more popular with Brasilian tourists who frequent the Lençóis and arrive at Luzia’s in Canto do Atins. However, you will notice them only passing through Atins thus far.

Some travellers destined for Atins may arrive on one of the day-trip boats from Barreirinhas, which is actually quite a pleasant mode of transport as you’ll get to take in the sights of Vassouras, Mandacarú and Caburé along the route.

  • Beach life

Atins’ beach life extends itself across a vast deserted area that stretches countless miles into the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park. This is not your tropical palm tree beach though. Whilst the sand is white and fine the beach front is typified by meandering sand dunes and is fairly windy during the dry season of July to December. These days you will find a number of beach huts that provide shelter from the sun and wind and offer cold beverages and tasty lunches, however remember to take sunscreen and keep hydrated.

Back in the village, kicking back with a good book in your hammock is also a good option. The constant gentle breeze makes life quite enjoyable when being lazy!


There is an growing number of restaurants to choose from in Atins. Consult the local tourism website for latest information.

Hostels & Holiday Houses[edit]

There is rising choice of accommodation from cheap and cheerful to luxurious to be found in Atins. Consult the local tourism website for latest information.

Contact & information[edit]

Consult the comprehensive tourism information website:

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