"The night is nice in those big houses at downtown."  

Formerly denominated the Brazilian Athens, Love Island and City of the Tiles, São Luis is now known as the Brazilian Jamaica, in an allusion to the reggae. São Luís is the only place where the people dance the reggae tightly together, since in other places the choreographies are individual. Besides the reggae, it also conserves many folkloric traditions, like "Bumba-Meu-Boi" and "Tambor-de-Crioula". 

"The tide variation here is impressive."  

The facades of hte houses of São Luís are filled with tiles. They are pieces of ceramic that you join to form colored drawings. Each house has a  different tile color and drawings.  

"There is a crazy dragon there... "  

Reggae is a musical phenomenon, that heat up the nights and days of the city and it has been attracting many tourists, to check out the rhythm. Reggae is so diffused in the city that it is not still restricted to the periphery and reaches all social classes and ages. All the radio stations, FM or AM, play reggae. 

"Nice... "  


"Ponta d'Areia" (Sand Tip) - 3,5 kilometers from downtown. It is one of the most frequented. Famous for the reggae clubs. 

São Marcos - Favorite of the surfers. It has São Marcos Fort and the entrance of the bay of same name. 

"Calhau" (Flintstone) - Considered the most beautiful for the presence of dunes.  Frequented during the summer games season and it has an illustrious address: former-president José Sarney. 

"There is a sidewalk with bike lane".  

"Caolho" (Cross-eyed) - Extension of Flintstone until the entrance of Olho d'Água. 

"Olho d'Água" - Very frequented by the fishermen and by the windcar drivers. 

Araçagi - 19 kilometers from downtown. Landscape of dunes and cliffs. 

"I always wanted to fire a cannon".  

Other attractions: 

"Litorânea" (Coastal) Av. - During the day, proper to run, to bike ride and to work out, at night to eat, to drink and to flirt. 

Historical center - Big Beach. At night the bars and restaurants put chairs and tables on the street, and people stay till dawn, it is a good moment to get to know the rhythm of the city, because usually the music is live and almost always with local musicians.  

"This is the city of the reggae."  


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1. The nightlife happens in the big houses of downtown. It seems a trip to the past.  

2. Try "Guaraná Jesus". It is a pink guarana with tuti fruti taste. It is not delicious, but it is typical of Maranhão. 

3. If you'll go for a boat trip or will take the ferry-boat, get to know the schedule of the high tide. On the low tide the boats are stuck and the water disappears. The tide variation is impressive. 

4. Most people think that the capital of the reggae is Bahia. Well... this is because they've never gone to São Luis.  

5. A good time to visit the city is between June 20 and 30, when "bumba-meu-boi" parties happen. 

6. Don't miss the opportunity to visit Lençóis Maranhenses. It is one of the most awesome attractions of Brazil. 

10. It's advisable to get the vaccine against yelow fever 10 days before the trip. 

11. "My name is Maria, I love this site, it is great. I was very happy to see that you went to São Luiz! I've been in São Luíz in August, 2000, visited the historical Center, where there are so many nice places to visit, to buy souvenirs and also to enjoy the night, because it has great bars. I also went to Barrerinhas, it is interesting that as soon as I arrived to Barrerinhas, I saw a huge dune right at the entrance of the city, it is fantastic! The trip to Barrerinhas was quite tiresome, because we went by car, and the highway that takes to the city was not paved, there were passages when the car stalled and we had to solve the problem under an intense sun. I knew that it's a whole lot easier, because "Translitorânea" (Transcoastal) road is finished... (read the rest in the tips of Lençóis Maranhenses)... I came back to São Paulo totally loosened of any stress, light, super happy with my trip to São Luiz, and fully conscious of how wonderful it is to travel! Kisses to all and I love you, Haxi! "tip from Maria of Ponte    

12. "My name is Sandra and on the last holiday of June, 2003, me and my husband went to São Luís and to some other cities of Maranhão following some very useful tips of yours. I loved the city. Especially the "Bumba-meu-boi" party. It is very organized, we could listen to several rhythms of the popular culture and the happiness of the people is wonderful. It's great to get to know a people that still struggles to preserve his culture. I must recommend you to visit "Nossa Senhora do Desterro" Church (it is the oldest of the city) and to talk with Mr. Francisco, he is wonderful, very nice and gave us many historical information. We also visited Alcântara, that is charming with its ruins and history. It is very interesting the work of the little guides who are very polite. Seek Geraldo, he is a 14 year-old boy who likes a lot what he does. The highway that takes to Lençós Maranehenses is great, the place is of an indescribable beauty. It is an adventure that you can't miss. The boat trip on "Preguiça" (Laziness) river is also an exciting adventure. Thank you for the tips that made me enjoy a lot my trip. Kisses" tip from Sandra 

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