At a glance, Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, located on Brazil’s north Atlantic coast, may not seem like much. The desert, which, spans over 1000 square kilometres, is either so dry that aquatic life must bury themselves under the little available water to survive, or is absolutely bucketing down, receiving over 120cm of rain annually.
But what happens in between the wet and dry seasons is truly spectacular.
Between July and September each year, once the dunes begin to dry up, and what remains are these colossal turquoise lagoons. The desert pools boast comfortably warm temperatures of up to 30 degrees Celsius, with an exceptional, unmatched view, making it incredibly popular with swimmers.
These pools are up to 3m deep in places and reach over 300m in length. Visitors are transported by 4WDs in order to make the journey through steep terrain, with a number of tours leaving from nearby Barreirinhas.
If you want to take a dip in the desert, you best start planning — they’re typically dry up by the end of September.
(Lead image: Danielle Pereira / Flickr)