Lençóis, in the middle of Bahia state, Brazil, is one of those pleasant surprises you will be happy to have come across in your travels.
Poço Azul is an amazingly clear water pool inside a cave that you can swim in! My picture does not do it justice but you can see the underwater arch in it. A tour to Poço Azul should also include a visit to Poço Encantado, another big cavern filled with stunning crystal clear blue water. Entrance is charged at both.
Caldeirões do Serrano is a series of beautiful water pool formations in the bed rock embedded with small pebbles of different types and colours. It’s a natural playground where you can take a plunge into a ‘caldron’ or let yourself go on fun slides. Walk 30 minutes along the river from Lençóis to get there.
Some of the other popular tourist attractions include Gruta da Pratinha and Gruta Azul – both susceptible to muddiness after heavy rain; and Parque Nacional da Chapada Diamantina (Chapada Diamantina National Park).
Lençóis itself is a small town with pretty cobblestone streets. Its livelihood depends very much on backpacker tourism, and there is fierce competition for your business among the many tour agencies and hostels in town: you can expect a swarm of tour operators and hostel people to descend on you as you get off the bus. Despite that, its popularity means it’s on the expensive side for a small town.
It’s better to do your tours on a sunny day and not after heavy rain, so you can see more intense and wider spectrum of colour in the water. The main ‘water’ attractions take 2 days (2 different tours) to see.