Alter do Chão, in the state of Pará, gained worldwide fame after being chosen by The Guardian newspaper as one of the most beautiful beach destinations in Brazil, ahead of paradises such as Fernando de Noronha and Alagoas.
Strange? Yes, but the truth is that Alter do Chão has beaches worthy of the most splendid landscape in the country and, it is worth mentioning, all surrounded by the intense green of the Amazon and watered by the fresh waters of the Tapajós and Arapiuns rivers.
Enjoy the magnificent rivers of Para and dive without fear of being happy! Pará awaits you with white sand banks, unforgettable river baths, enchanted forests and, of course, spectacular cuisine!
- Alter do Chão, Tips for your Family Vacation
- 1- Best time to go to the Alter do Chão Tapajós River
- 2- Where is Alter do Chão?
- 3- How to get to Alter do Chão
- 4- How to get from Santarém to Alter do Chão
- 5- How many days to stay in Alter do Chão
- 6- Who is Alter do Chão no pa recommended for?
- 7- What to do in Alter do Chão this
- 8- In Alter do Chão Tapajós River go to many beaches!
- 9- Don’t get so attached to famous names or attractions.
- 10. Take boat or motorboat excursions.
- 11- Start with Ilha do Amor
- 12- Climb Morro da Piraoca Hill
- 13- Watching the sunset at Ponta do Cururu or Ponta do Muretá
- 14- Sit at the tables by the river at Ponta de Pedras beach.
- 15- Enjoy the charming kiosks at sunset at Pindobal beach.
- 16- Stop for lunch at Carapanari beach.
- 17- Enjoy the river bathing on both sides of Ponta do Jutuba (or Jutubinha).
- 18- Go to the spectacular beaches of the Arapiuns River
- 19- Visit a riverside community on the Arapiuns River and take the opportunity to spend a night there.
- 20- Walk along the Tapajós National Forest Trail
- 21- Go to Lago Verde and the Enchanted Forest
- 22- Relax at Lago Preto
- 23- Visiting the beaches of Belterra
- 24- See the beauties of the Jari Canal
- 25- Strolling around Santarem before or after going to Alter do Chão
- 26- See the «Encontro das Águas» in Santarém
- 27- Dance a carimbó in the village of Alter do Chão
- 28- Buy some Indian art pieces
- 29- Try the paraense e tapajônica cuisine
- 30 – New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Eve in Alter do Chão
- 31- Inns and hotels in Alter do Chão
- 32- Telephony and Internet in Alter do Chão
- 33- Shopping and money in Alter do Chão
- 34- How much does it cost to travel to Alter do Chão?
- 35- Final tips of Alter do Chão
Alter do Chão, Tips for your Family Vacation
Thinking of a beach destination in the northern region of Brazil may give the impression of a very complex trip.
Not at all. Alter do Chão is much easier to get to know than you think.
And to help you on this trip (which, we guarantee, will be one of the best of your life), we have prepared a post full of tips to get to know Alter do Chão and its surroundings.
Here we explain everything about how to get there, the best time, which beaches to visit, inns and hotels to stay, how to take the tours and, of course, what to do in Alter do Chão.
Let’s go there!
1- Best time to go to the Alter do Chão Tapajós River
This is the most important information for those who want to know the region. Alter do Chão is characterized by changing completely depending on the amount of rain.
The best time to visit the famous river beaches (main attractions of the region) is the so-called Amazonian summer, dry season from August to December.
If you are looking for boat rides in the middle of the jungle and want to see a lot of animal life, it is best to travel in the Amazonian winter, a rainy season that extends mainly from January to July.
Throughout the year, Alter do Chão offers spectacular scenery, but, of course, most tourists seek out the region for the riverside beaches.
It is during this period that accommodations become more expensive and the town of Alter do Chão is more crowded.
On weekends and long vacations the movement also increases, especially on the beaches near Alter do Chão – such as the Island of Love – and on the sandy strips that offer restaurant infrastructure.
Another date that attracts a large number of tourists is the Festa do Sairé and the Festival dos Botos, traditional, religious and folkloric rituals that take place on different days each year, always in September.
2- Where is Alter do Chão?
Alter do Chão is a city that is part of the municipality of Santarém, in Pará, and has a little more than 6000 inhabitants.
Located 1350 km from the capital Belém, Alter do Chão is only 34 km from Santarém Airport (STM), the main gateway for those who wish to travel by plane from all over Brazil.
Despite not being the largest city and not the most populated in the region (Santarém is much larger), Alter do Chão is the main base for tourists who want to see the beauties of the Tapajós River and Arapiuns River.
3- How to get to Alter do Chão
When planning to visit a destination surrounded by the richness of the Amazon and located in the middle of the great state of Pará, it is common to imagine that it is a rather complex trip.
Wrong! Getting to Alter do Chão is much simpler than you might think at first glance.
The village of Alter do Chão is located only 34 km from Santarém Airport (STM), which is served daily by flights from Belém, Manaus and Brasília.
From all three cities there are direct flights operated by Latam (Brasilia), Gol (Belém and Manaus) and Azul (Belém and Manaus) airlines.
If you are in other cities, one connection is enough to get to Santarém. If you are already in Pará or Manaus, you can also take advantage of MAP flights from Altamira and Manaus.
Another option for those in Manaus or Belém is to take the boat trip to Santarém.
In this case, travel time will vary depending on the departure city.
Leaving from Manaus will be two nights of travel, and from Belem will be three nights.
The cost, starting at R$ 147, varies according to the route and the type of accommodation chosen (simple, simple with air, cabin without bathroom and suite with bathroom).
4- How to get from Santarém to Alter do Chão
The most common route between Santarém and Alter do Chão is by land, on a paved road.
The route is only 34 km and can be done by cab (average cost of 70 to 100 reais), by private transfer (average cost of 100 reais per person and the inns indicate the drivers) or by regular bus to Alter do Chão (available only during the day).
It is worth mentioning that the regular bus to Alter do Chão does not pass through Santarém airport.
In this case, you will have to first take a bus from the airport to the city (get off at Shopping Rio Tapajós) and then the bus to Alter do Chão (often every half hour).
The route is very quiet and the bus is only full on weekends, in the best Sunday beach scheme.
The bus ride takes 40 minutes and takes you to the center of Alter do Chão for less than R$ 5.
5- How many days to stay in Alter do Chão
Don’t fall for the idea that the Alter do Chão region is limited to Love Island Beach. Not at all.
Around Alter do Chão there are countless river beaches to be happy during your trip.
Besides the beaches, Alter do Chão has many other attractions, such as forests, lagoons, igarapés, canals and riverside communities that enrich the travel experience.
So, the longer you stay in Alter do Chão, the better!
The ideal way to enjoy Alter do Chão without rushing and get to know its main attractions is to stay there for a week.
In seven days you can visit the main beaches of Rio Tapajós and Rio Arapiuns, visit the Tapajós National Forest, rest on the Love Island Beach, climb Morro da Piraoca, walk around Lago Verde and also invest in a tour of the local canals, igapós and streams.
You will have the feeling of having seen the main one, but, believe me, it will not be enough.
If you want to travel leisurely, have time to return to your favorite beach, take a walk along a more deserted stretch of sand and go to more distant attractions, it is best to stay in Alter do Chão for ten days.
With more time available it is worth taking the boat trip from Santarém to Belém or Manaus.
The trip is spectacular and you will get a taste of what it is like to travel along the Amazon River.
If you can only do one stretch, choose the Santarém to Belém, where the boat starts the journey along the meeting of the Tapajós River with the Amazon River and passes near the riverside communities of Marajó Island.
Now… If you are on the run and have little time to travel, go anyway.
The Alter do Chão Tapajós river bathing is wonderful even if it’s only for a day.
An extended vacation of three or four days is ideal to get to know the basics of the region and look forward to returning. If you find a cheap ticket, don’t miss the opportunity and run to Alter.
6- Who is Alter do Chão no pa recommended for?
If you love paradisiacal beaches, Alter do Chão is the perfect destination that will make you fall in love, and you should know that they want to make a lot of effort to get you there.
The access is easy and the itinerary is recommended for single travelers, couples, families with children and seniors.
The boat rides reach beaches very close to the town and also very distant strips of sand.
And the degree of adventure varies according to the tourist’s desire, so Alter is for everyone. Well… just about everyone….
If you’re looking for a big city, shopping malls, busy avenues and lots of excitement, maybe Alter do Chão is not a good request for you.
However, if you are a fan of big urban centers and have an open heart for a little known paradise, enjoy it and go to Alter!
To travel to Alter do Chão is to be sure to find scenery worthy of countless photographic records.
The region is excellent for those seeking days of rest and direct contact with nature and also for those who do not renounce to a good infrastructure and just want to spend the day relaxing without taking their feet out of the water, with the best fish and dishes full of flavor.
7- What to do in Alter do Chão this
The days in Alter do Chão are dedicated to walks that lead to beaches, rivers, lagoons, forests, riverside communities, igapós, igarapés and canals that are the synthesis of the beauty of the region.
The ideal, when boarding Alter, is to get to know a little of each landscape. At night, most tourists invest their time in tasting some local delicacies in the town’s restaurants.
For the more lively ones, it’s worth playing in the carimbó! Those who want a different experience can even invest in a night under the stars on a deserted beach or in a good hammock in the riverside communities or in the middle of the Tapajós National Forest.
8- In Alter do Chão Tapajós River go to many beaches!
The fine, clear sand that appears on the banks of the Tapajós and Arapiuns rivers during the dry season forms a wonderful set of beaches on the outskirts of Alter do Chão.
There are so many strips and points of sand into which fresh water enters that many of them have no name.
The most famous ones almost always offer restaurants or kiosks for tourists.
Others, more unknown, give visitors an inhospitable atmosphere and the feeling that we are in a particular paradise.
Whatever your type of beach, we are sure it will be beautiful! And the more beaches you go, the more unforgettable moments you will collect.
Always remember that the beaches of Alter do Chão appear only during the dry season, when the level of the rivers drops and the strips of sand appear splendid.
9- Don’t get so attached to famous names or attractions.
In a place with so many options of beaches, lagoons and other attractions, it is common for there to be confusion between the names of each of them.
Even among the natives of the region there is a difference in nomenclature.
Don’t get so attached to this detail and enjoy the tour destinations. Appearance is better than worrying about names.
10. Take boat or motorboat excursions.
It may sound strange, but the beaches of Alter do Chão are not the same. To get to know several of them, it is best to invest in boat or motorboat trips.
The routes vary a lot and there are options for all types of tourists. The tours are conducted by tourist agencies, the boatmen’s association (Association of River Tourism of Alter do Chão – ATUFA) or by private professionals.
To have more freedom of itinerary, the ideal is to hire a private boatman and choose the stops of the tour together with him.
It is worth making friends at the inn and in the village to share the cost and still enjoy the freedom to choose the route.
The more tours you take, the more beaches and other attractions you will see. Depending on your tastes and desires, the boatman will be able to tell you immediately the best requests for your day.
Tours in Alter do Chão cost between R$ 100 and R$ 250, depending on the route and the number of tourists. Everything is negotiable!
11- Start with Ilha do Amor
Ilha do Amor (Love Island) is the main destination for tourists arriving in Alter do Chão.
Despite the name, the «island» is actually a sandy point connected to the mainland, where on one side is the Green Lake and on the other the Tapajós River.
Surrounded by beautiful and colorful boats and right in front of the village, this is the most popular beach of Alter do Chão.
On sunny weekends it is usually very crowded (the locals also enjoy the beach), but during the week the atmosphere is very quiet and often deserted.
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Especially interesting for those who like the beach with infrastructure, the Island of Love is full of kiosks and services such as kayak rentals.
To get out of the tourist movement, just walk a few minutes and the beach will be deserted.
In the late afternoon, do not miss the sunset that occurs on the strip of sand in front of the Tapajós River.
The spectacle is one of the most beautiful in the region. Ah! It is worth saying that to get to the Island of Love you will have to go through a small stretch of water.
There are only a few meters that can be crossed by boat (R$ 5), swimming or on foot, depending on the time of year.
12- Climb Morro da Piraoca Hill
If you are already on the Island of Love, enjoy and follow the path to the Morro da Piraoca.
It is the largest hill in the region, reigns in the middle of the Amazonian vegetation and offers a 360º view of the surroundings of Alter do Chão, from where you can see Lago Verde, Lago das Piranhas, Ponta do Cururu and the imposing Tapajós River, besides, of course, all of Alter do Chão.
The climb to Morro da Piraoca is very quiet and the trail – counting the time from the village of Alter do Chão – takes less than an hour on foot.
The trail crosses the Island of Love and continues until the sign indicating the way up.
Several walks stop already in front of the beginning of the trilha do morro, which greatly shortens the time of the hike.
13- Watching the sunset at Ponta do Cururu or Ponta do Muretá
If you take a boat or motorboat trip along the beaches of Alter do Chão Tapajós River, it is almost certain that there will be a strategic stop at sunset at Ponta do Cururu or Ponta do Muretá.
A few minutes from the village, these sandy points that enter Tapajós are the ideal places to close the day’s circuit with a breathtaking view.
The sun sets on the water and you can watch the spectacle floating peacefully in the warm waters of the Tapajós River – unforgettable and not to be missed!
To get to Ponta do Cururu and Ponta do Muretá it is worth taking a walk along the Tapajós River, take a boat just for the sunset (at the boatmen’s association Alter do Chão it is easy to get there) or, in the case of Ponta do Cururu, continue on foot from Ilha do Amor (with a route that can take 2 hours along the river bank).
14- Sit at the tables by the river at Ponta de Pedras beach.
Ponta de Pedras beach, bathed by the Tapajós river, is one of those strips of sand that everyone likes.
The view, rare among the beaches of Alter do Chão, has rock formations on the river bank.
Although there are several restaurants at the bottom of the strip of sand, the good thing there is to sit with your feet in the water and enjoy without haste.
Don’t worry about beer and snacks, the restaurant service will get you there!
If you want to escape the tourist movement, just walk five minutes and you will already have the feeling of a deserted beach.
Ponta de Pedras beach is part of the municipality of Santarém and is much visited by boat trips from Alter do Chão.
Access is also possible by land. Ponta de Pedras is 36 km from Santarém and 27 km from Alter do Chão. The initial route is on foot.
15- Enjoy the charming kiosks at sunset at Pindobal beach.
Praia do Pindobal is a favorite of tourists who do not give up the kiosks and restaurants to spend the day.
With several thatched huts by the Tapajós River, Pindobal beach is the ideal place to relax.
You can rent umbrellas at the local restaurants and spend the whole day enjoying it without worrying.
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Another highlight of Praia do Pindobal is the wonderful sunset. The sunset occurs on the water, right in front of the beach huts.
When the day ends, take the opportunity to record the spectacle.
At 12 km from the village of Alter do Chão, in the municipality of Belterra, Pindobal beach can be accessed both by the Tapajós River (on boat or motorboat trips) and by a dirt road.
From Alter do Chão the overland trip is through the Estrada do Pindobal.
16- Stop for lunch at Carapanari beach.
The scenery of Carapanari beach, on the edge of the Tapajós, is so bucolic and relaxing that it makes you want to lie down and stay there.
With several arms of water that create small lagoons, the strip of fine white sand of Carapanari beach adopts beautiful shapes.
Enjoy one of the thatched wooden huts arranged on the sand for that beautiful vacation photo.
At Carapanari Beach, in addition to the river bathing, you can enjoy the Casa do Saulo Restaurant, one of the most famous in the region, which has a delicious space to spend the day, as well as a menu with many regional dishes.
Carapanari beach, in the municipality of Santarém, is part of several boat and motorboat excursions from Alter do Chão.
Distant 20 km from Santarém and 28 km from Alter do Chão, Carapanari is also accessible by PA-457 and then for another 9 km by a dirt road.
17- Enjoy the river bathing on both sides of Ponta do Jutuba (or Jutubinha).
With a beautiful hook-shaped point that juts into the Tapajós River, Ponta do Jutuba has one of the most beautiful landscapes of Alter do Chão.
On one side, the beach forms a deep pool while on the other side the fun is due to the waves of the great Tapajós. The difference between one side and the other does not stop there.
The water has a different temperature depending on the dive site.
Ponta do Jutuba is an extension of Jutuba beach and you can leisurely pass between the two. The longer you stay there, the better.
Access to Ponta do Jutuba is only possible through the Tapajós River.
A good option to get to know this beach is to visit Ponta do Jutuba together with Canal de Jari or Ponta de Pedras Beach. They are in the same direction and it will be easy to combine the tours.
18- Go to the spectacular beaches of the Arapiuns River
The Tapajós River is not the only star outside Alter do Chão. Visitors to the region can also enjoy the clear waters of the Arapiuns River.
A tributary of the Tapajós, the Arapiuns is a journey that requires a boat ride and a few bumps in the river waves.
The passage from one bank of the Tapajós to the other to reach the Arapiuns can be quite an adventure, even reminiscent of a roller coaster.
It’s hard to believe we’re not on the high seas when we start jumping waves. All the sacrifice (and the shaking) is rewarded with spectacular beaches and exciting landscapes.
The adventure of the route will take you to some of the most beautiful beaches on the outskirts of Alter do Chão.
In fact, the beaches of the Arapiuns River are as beautiful (or more so) than those of the Tapajós.
The sandy areas change from long beaches to white sandy points that enter the clear waters of the Arapiuns.
It is even difficult to shrink one of them to stay. Among the most famous sandy strips, the beaches of Icuxi, Ponta do Toronó and Ponta Grande are worth a visit.
All three are equally beautiful, unmissable and, best of all, deserted!
Icuxi beach is a good mix between shallow and deep waters, allowing you to see Arapiuns with different shades.
Ponta do Toronó stands out for its long strip of clear sand and its numerous inlets that enter the Arapiuns and form small ponds.
Ponta Grande is a large white sandy point, also full of small ponds, but with a detail that produces beautiful photos: a long thin strip of sand with water on both sides. The ideal setting for that special photo.
The beaches of the Arapiuns River are accessible only by boat or motorboat. Day trips from Alter do Chão cost an average of R$ 150 per person.
The more adventurous can take a liner boat in Santarém, at a cost of R$ 30 (boat with 4h30 duration) or R$ 40 (boat with 2h30 trip).
Both leave from the Port of Santarém (in front of Mercadão 2000) at around 10 am.
The boats make stops in the Arapiuns communities, where it is possible to spend the night.
19- Visit a riverside community on the Arapiuns River and take the opportunity to spend a night there.
Tours between the Alter do Chão and the Arapiuns River usually stop for lunch in the riverside communities.
Ready to receive tourists, the villages on the banks of the Arapiuns offer delicious meals, always based on fresh fish and tasting like grandma’s food.
In addition, you will be treated to an irresistible meal for that siesta after lunch.
Enjoy the parade also for a good chat with the residents, always with great stories to tell.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the culture and way of life of the riverside people.
A good stop is at Comunidade Coroca and you are sure to love every minute of it, but there are other communities that also welcome visitors, both for lunch and in the evening.
Those who want to spend more time on the Arapiuns River can stay in the communities that receive tourists.
They usually offer menus for a good night’s sleep and even complete houses, with meals included and very affordable prices.
It is worth the experience of isolation in the middle of nature and the opportunity to enjoy the Arapiuns River even more intensely.
It is important to say that in the riverside communities of the Arapiuns there is no telephone or internet signal.
It is a place to enjoy totally disconnected. Enjoy it!
20- Walk along the Tapajós National Forest Trail
Very close to Alter do Chão is one of the most magical places in the region: the Tapajós National Forest.
Anyone visiting Alter who has not had the chance to see a forest with an Amazonian atmosphere cannot miss the opportunity to walk among the grandiose trees of this reserve of more than 527 thousand hectares.
The tree of life
The tour passes through trails within the dense vegetation, where it is possible to see the difference between a secondary forest and a primary forest.
During the walk, the guide will show various plants and the use of each one of them. You will see fantastic species of the Amazon, such as the giant kapok (known as the «tree of life») and the rubber tree, as well as a myriad of other curious plants, such as those that serve as paper and natural insect repellent.
In addition to the daytime visit, those who want to have a closer contact with the forest and the local communities can invest in a night tour.
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The camp can be in the middle of the forest or next to the Tapajós River.
The Tapajós National Forest is accessible both by the Tapajós River and by road.
The most common support points for tourists visiting the region are the communities of Jamaraquá (where the forest is called Flona Jamaraquá), Maguari and São Domingos.
The most popular tour among tourists is the one to Flona Jamaraquá, where there is a 9 km trail through the forest.
The tour to Flona Jamaraquá is done by motorboat from Alter do Chão. The tour, which costs between R$ 120 and R$ 180 (payment for the guide and lunch at the tour site are paid separately), has stops before or after Flona Jamaraquá to enjoy one of the region’s beaches.
The boat trip from Alter do Chão to the community of Jamaraquá takes, on average, 1h. Another option is to go by land, with a trip that varies between 1h30 and 2h. In this case, the route will take the BR-153 and then a dirt road.
21- Go to Lago Verde and the Enchanted Forest
Formed by the waters of the Tapajós River that embrace the village of Alter do Chão, Lago Verde bathes the Island of Love and offers other beautiful landscapes for those who want to invest in a deeper trip.
A good way to start exploring the lake is to follow the shore to other beaches. It is even worth renting a kayak and paddling amidst the scenery.
With a little encouragement it will not be difficult to go to the most beautiful arms of the lake, where the igapós and the springs of transparent waters are located.
Another attraction worth visiting is the Enchanted Forest. The place is more interesting during the flood season and access is possible by boat.
Upon arriving at the forest the tourist is transferred to a canoe that goes deep into the vegetation, where it is possible to observe birds, monkeys and sloths, in addition to the exuberant nature that surrounds the place.
22- Relax at Lago Preto
For those looking for a different experience from the beaches of the Tapajós River, Lago Preto is a good request with easy access.
As its name suggests, the water of this lake gives the impression of being very dark, however, all it takes is a trickle of sunshine to make it transparent and clear. The water also reserves surprises with different temperatures.
Cold weather, warm weather, bathing is constantly a surprise. Despite the easy access, the possibility of enjoying the place without anyone is quite large.
Hidden from the gaze of the boats and ships that pass by Tapajós, the Preto Lake is a good option for those seeking privacy and peace in the middle of nature.
Lago Preto is accessible from Itapari Beach (next to Ponta de Pedras Beach).
To reach Itapari Beach the route can be done by boat on the Tapajós River or by road.
From Santarém or Alter do Chão the trip by land begins on PA-457 (paved road) and then by land road for another 11 km.
23- Visiting the beaches of Belterra
The municipality of Belterra, neighboring Alter do Chão, reserves some beautiful beaches for tourists.
From Alter do Chão no pa, we can go on boat rides or take a trip on a dirt road to some of these sandy portions of the Tapajós.
The most famous and crowded beach of Belterra is Praia do Pindobal, but there are other options, such as Ponta do Muretá, where the sunset is wonderful!
Those who wish to tour Belterra can also visit Ponta do Cajutuba, Aramanai beach, São Domingos beach and Maguari beach.
All these places are accessible through the Tapajós River with boat or car tours by road (except Aramanai beach).
24- See the beauties of the Jari Canal
The trip to the Jari Canal is especially interesting for observant travelers and nature lovers.
The boat ride following this canal leads to a beautiful landscape, where it will be easy to see typical riverside houses, Amazonian vegetation, many birds and even some animals, such as sloths, monkeys, caimans and, hopefully, some porpoises.
The Jari Channel is most beautiful in the rainy season, when the vegetation is lush and the river is full, allowing us to reach the places where great victories have been achieved.
The trip to the Jari Canal can be combined with visits to the beaches along the way. The average cost of the tour is R$ 120 per person in a boat shared with other tourists.
25- Strolling around Santarem before or after going to Alter do Chão
If you move between Alter do Chão and Santarém it is very quiet, so you don’t need to spend the night to continue your trip the next day.
However, if you are part of the team that loves to get to know a new city, it is worth investing a few hours in Santarém.
It is important to say that Alter do Chão is a district of Santarém and, in theory, everything in Alter do Chão is part of Santarém.
In practice, however, many beaches in the region are treated by tourists as Alter do Chão, after all, that is where the tours depart from.
Santarém, with 300 thousand inhabitants, is one of the most important cities in Pará.
Surrounded by exuberant nature and embedded with Amazonian vegetation, the Amazon River and the Tapajós River, Santarém is an interesting stop before Alter do Chão.
Getting to know the main attractions is a quick task and Santarém can be visited in a morning or an afternoon.
Start the tour by the river bank, where you can follow the movement of the boats, taste some snacks (give preference to the wonderful fish of the region) and see the spectacle of the meeting of the waters of the Amazon River with those of the Tapajós River.
To learn about the local history and culture, visit the João Fona Cultural Center.
Another good request is to visit the Mercadão 2000, where huge shipments of fish and other products from the region arrive every morning, allowing direct contact with the culture and cuisine of Tapajônica.
And if your business is really going to the beach, near Santarém you can check out Maracanã beach, Ponta do Arariá, Pajuçara beach and Carapanari beach, where the famous Casa do Saulo restaurant is located.
26- See the «Encontro das Águas» in Santarém
Right in front of the shore of Santarém is the meeting of the blue waters of the Tapajós River with the muddy waters of the Amazon River.
To see the phenomenon you don’t even have to take a boat. On dry land you will be able to observe the point where the two rivers meet.
Those who want to see the spectacle more closely can take a boat ride to the meeting point and swim between the two great rivers that cross the Pará.
Tours depart from both Santarém and Alter do Chão and the cost varies according to the place of departure and the type of transportation chosen. Remember that the show is free of charge.
27- Dance a carimbó in the village of Alter do Chão
Tremble! Tremble! Tremble! Tremble! It is difficult to leave Alter do Chão without hearing at least one of the beats of Dona Onete, the diva of the seals who sings the tremors caused by the jambu.
The rhythm of the dancing Paraense sticks in your head and shakes your body, no matter how hard you try to stay still.
And if you can’t beat it, join in! Let yourself be stampeded and get on the wheel. To see a beautiful performance, go to the Gastronomic Space, where every Friday there are music and dance performances.
If you really just want to have fun, download a good carimbó playlist and get in the mood right now!
28- Buy some Indian art pieces
Alter do Chão has the most complete store in the world specializing in Indian items.
Araribá has an impressive variety of pieces and many of them reach the status of works of art. Your pocket will be the limit!
There is everything from souvenirs for R$ 10 to pieces that easily exceed R$ 1000.
The ideal for those looking for a souvenir of the trip, a symbol of Pará or a beautiful object of original decoration of the indigenous people of Brazil is to go to the store several times.
It is impossible to see everything in one visit and there are so many spectacular things that it is difficult to choose quickly.
29- Try the paraense e tapajônica cuisine
The flavors of the north are authentic and full of personality, which makes the gastronomy a separate experience from the trip to Alter do Chão.
Tasting fresh fish from the Amazon, often washed down with unusual spices for those not from the region, is part of the traveler’s package.
Try the açaí paraense (very different from what you have outside the northern region), caldeirada, duck no tucupi, jambu and all the river fish that are spectacular, such as pirarucu, tambaqui and novio.
During the day tour, the most common thing to do in Alter do Chão is to eat at the kiosks on the beaches with infrastructure or in the riverside communities, which serve as a support point for the boats with tourists.
A good baked fish in the communities along the Arapiuns River, for example, will cost an average of R$ 30 per person.
In a trendy restaurant overlooking the river, the cost of a dish for two people can reach R$ 150.
Both experiences are worthwhile, especially for those who are getting to know the region for the first time.
30 – New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Eve in Alter do Chão
It may sound strange, but Alter do Chão has a very famous New Year’s Eve among party people.
The secluded and almost deserted beaches on the banks of the Tapajós River become the setting for big New Year’s Eve celebrations, with a surprise New Year’s Eve party spot, boat parties, sunset parties on the beaches and everything else you’d expect from a mega New Year’s Eve celebration.
And the best news is that the Alter do Chão party is not done in one day.
There are several different celebrations that happen before, during and after the turn of the year – this is for those who really have a lot of energy and humor!
The most famous celebration in Alter do Chão is Vai Tapajós. If you are looking for a different destination to spend the turn of the year, run there!
31- Inns and hotels in Alter do Chão
Although it is located only 30 km from Santarém (the largest city in the region), Alter do Chão is the best base for travelers.
Alter do Chão is a destination totally focused on tourism and there is no shortage of inns to stay there.
However, it must be said that Alter is not a place of great luxuries, resorts or hotels full of refinement. What prevails there are simple inns with basic services.
Some, however, are distinguished from the others by their charming surroundings and the care in the details to keep the tourist connected with nature at all times.
The village of Alter do Chão is very small and will hardly be misplaced. For those who like to be close to the hustle and bustle, the ideal is to stay closer to the Nossa Senhora da Saúde Church, where there is the highest concentration of restaurants and stores in Alter do Chão.
The region also marks the starting point for boats and launches. For those who want more contact with nature, it is worth going a little further away from the center, either in the middle of the forest or by the river.
It is worth saying that there are inns that add a central location to the greener surroundings. In the high season, from July to January, prices tend to increase.
Accommodation in Alter do Chão and Santarém
In low season, from February to June, it is possible to get accommodation at very low prices.
Among the accommodation options in Alter do Chão, it is worth checking the comfort of:
With good location and cost-effectiveness, we can enjoy:
A little further from the river bank, but still well located, see:
- Pousada Vila Alter
- Pousada Recanto Maguary
To save money, look for:
- Hostel Pousada do Tapajós
- Hostel Coração Verde
See more options for hotels and inns in Alter do Chão.
32- Telephony and Internet in Alter do Chão
Pousadas in Alter do Chão usually offer WI-FI for guests, but don’t expect anything too fast.
Among the cell phone operators, Vivo offers the best signal, but Oi, Claro and TIM also usually work in the village.
On the beaches the signal is much more limited. The best thing to do, even in Alter do Chão, is to hang up the phone and enjoy the trip.
33- Shopping and money in Alter do Chão
For everyday shopping, Alter do Chão can solve many of the most common problems.
In the village there is a well-stocked mini-market (where there is a 24h cashier), pharmacies, liquor stores (one of them strategically located near the departure point of the boats) and stores of other more common services such as clothing and basic electronics.
The common stuff will be easy to find there, but if you need some very specific product, don’t go out shopping in Alter do Chão. The possibility of not finding it is quite high.
In Alter do Chão there is a 24h bank ATM where you can withdraw money from several banks.
In Santarém there are bank branches of Banco do Brasil, Caixa Econômica Federal, Itaú, Bradesco, Santander, Banco 24h and others.
The card is commonly accepted in the larger establishments in Alter do Chão, but for payment of tours and meals on the beaches the card will not always be accepted. Be prepared with cash.
34- How much does it cost to travel to Alter do Chão?
Alter do Chão is a destination that takes care of all pockets. The biggest problem in the budget is the plane ticket, which usually has salty prices to Santarém, so it is important to be aware of the application of the best destinations to not miss any promotion!
Accommodations in the region vary from simple and cheap inns to boutique hotels full of rustic charm and refinement.
Not to mention that it is possible to sleep in a hammock at very low prices in front of spectacular beaches in riverside communities, where the prose is good and the food even better.
Your paradise complex Alter do Chão
By the way, the food prices are not scary either: a good lunch with Amazon fish or an elegant PF can be found for R$ 30.
Sandwiches and more elaborate dishes at the beaches and hotter restaurants easily exceed R$ 100 for two people.
Although it is possible to visit the beaches on foot and by bus (with very limited routes), the most recommendable and fun in Alter do Chão is to take the boat or motorboat tours that navigate the Tapajós River and the Arapiuns River.
The average cost of the day trips, with different stops and tours, varies between 100 and 150 reais per person in groups with a private boatman or in the association and 250 reais in groups with tour agencies. The tour will be free!
35- Final tips of Alter do Chão
Alter do Chão is a destination to let go of luxury and cling to nature.
Aprovecha cada minuto del viaje para bucear muchas veces, caminar sobre la arena blanca de las playas, disfrutar de la exuberante naturaleza amazónica y probar todos los platos y pescados de Para que puedas.
En Alter do Chão el ritmo es lento y no hay que luchar contra él. Métete en el tiempo y aprovecha para frenar día a día.
Sigue cada puesta de sol, observa atentamente el agua del río y déjate sorprender con un salto de las marsopas que siempre parecen saludarte.
Vea Alter do Chão con sus propios ojos, es aún mejor cuando lo ve sin la pantalla del celular como intermediario.
Tome fotografías, pero asegúrese de guardar sus recuerdos en la memoria más eficiente: ¡la suya! ¡Buen viaje y disfrute de Alter do Chão!