The Sertão, the Brazilian Outback on Horseback - Brazil
a 7-day equestrian adventure following the footsteps of Lampião; the Brazilian equivalent of Jesse James or Pancho Villa.
(+ you can extend this trip with 4 extra riding days on the stunning palm beaches of northeast Brazil.)
Day by day:
Day 1 : Arrival in Maceió ( Capital City of the State Alagoas )
Late afternoon Meet & Greet at the hotel in Maceió to brief the riding group about the coming days. Dinner and overnight at a
comfortable hotel in Maceió.
Day 2 : Maceió – Entremontes - Remanso (3 hours in the saddle)
We will depart from the hotel right after breakfast, leave the coastal city of Maceió, and head to the region where our horseback riding tour will start. The road will take us from the Atlantic coast to the backcountry full of crazy stories and legends. Through the windows of the car, we will be able to witness the dramatic change in vegetation and topography. We will know we are on the right track as soon as we see the San Francisco River. Lunch will be at the place where we will meet the horses. We will start our journey under the afternoon sun, follow ancient tracks till reaching the Village of Entremontes and the bank of the San Francisco River, where we will be lodged in a cozy farmhouse. Breathtaking views await us. (Farmhouse - Remanso) (Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner).
Day 3 : Entremontes Remanso Farm – Piranhas (3,1/2 hours in the saddle)
The São Francisco river will greet us when we wake up for a new day of horseback riding. Throughout the trail ride, we will have the mighty river within sight. A hearty breakfast will precede our boat ride to Angicos, in the state of Sergipe, where Lampião and part of his gang were ambushed, captured, and killed and beheaded (1938). We will return to the farmhouse, go for a refreshing swim in the river and have lunch. The ride to Piranhas will be full of magnificent views and charm. Tropeiros used to drive herds along this path, sell animals and food, and peddle other goods. The pearl of the Outback will come into view with its remarkably well-preserved old houses and historic government buildings.
Just like in the early days, we will tie up our horses in front of the old station, where today stands the Cangaço Museum, and dive into the history of the place. After a drink, we will find our Pousada, where we will spend the night. (Breakfast, lunch, and dinner), but before going to bed, we should enjoy a bit of the lively night scene downtown.
Day 4: Piranhas – Olho d´Água do Casado (4 hours in the saddle)
Along the ride, we will learn about the history and development of Piranhas and the region. The railroad was part of that story, and we are constantly reminded of it by the well-preserved station building and remains of old rails that crossed the outback. We will ride follow the old railroad till reaching the river cliffs and see the huge dam of the Xingó hydroelectric power plant. We continue the ride following the canyons and slopes. We will be lodged in a farmhouse style hotel right by the dam. (Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner).
Day 5: Olho d´Água do Casado – Talhado - Canyons (5 hours in the saddle)
Today day we will get very close to what life was and is like in this region. The Caatinga, rock paintings, toil in the fields, slopes, rock formations, and canyons. They are all beautiful, impressive, unique, and unusual! And the San Francisco River keeps flowing, proving that, given time, water does indeed shape the earth! In this particular case, water sculpts, embellishes, and refreshes! We will arrive at an oasis in the middle of the Caatinga, near the edge of the Talhado (slope) and the São Francisco river canyons. The view of the sunset from this spot is magical. (Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner).
Day 6 : Talhado – Povoado do Lamarão - Talhado (5 hours in the saddle)
Today, we will leave our Green Oasis in the middle of the caatinga towards Lamarão. We ride following old trails through properties in the middle of the caatinga, sometimes bordering the river and river cliffs until we reach our lunch spot near the village at the river shores. The lunch will be served by members of the community that are known for having a self-sustaining tourism project around rock archaeological sites. After lunch, we will attend to the traditional PEGA DE BOI. Which is the origin of the Vaquejada*, practiced as a sport, but still widely used in daily dealing with the first cattle in the area. Finish the event; we return to sleep at Pousada Verde, our Oasis, in the outback. (Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner).
*The vaquejada is a sport typical to the Northeast region of Brazil. (also practiced in some other Latin American countries). In which two cowboys ("vaqueiros") on horseback pursue a bull, seeking to pin it between the two horses and direct it to a goal (often consisting of chalk marks), where the animal is then knocked over.
Day 7 : Talhado – Maceió (2 hours in the saddle)
Our last morning of adventure! We start with a short riding going down the canyon to the platform where our chartered boat will be waiting for us. These will the time to say farewell to the horses. We will navigate through the canyons that were partly filled with water after the construction of the dam for the Xingó hydroelectric power plant. We will explore the canyons on the river. There will be enough time to go for a swim and take pictures of this unforgettable moment. The horses will be ready when we reach the shore again, and we will ride them to the spot where lunch will be served.
We will celebrate a memorable trip with the new friends made along the ride. We will then head back to the coastal city of Maceió. End of the itinerary. (Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner). END OF THE TRIP.
ATTENTION > You can extend this trip with 4 extra riding days along the stunning palm beaches of northeast Brazil. OPTIONAL EXTENSION: “THE PALM BEACH RUN OF THE NORTHEAST”
4 days galloping along endless palm beaches and crossing huge dunes
Brazil is all about tropical heat and amazing nature. But when we're talking about beaches, the northeast part of Brazil comes into the spotlight. And that’s exactly where we will be taking you to; to the beaches of the Northeastern State of Alagoas, where you will canter the endless beaches still untouched by civilization. From the saddle, you will drink fresh coconut water and discover some of the most beautiful tropical places you have ever been to. You will be riding and swimming with great Mangalarga Marchador horses, visit typical fishing villages and overnight in cozy beach houses and pousadas. Those 4 additional days of fun in the sun is really an added value, trotting the Outback & galloping the Palm Beaches Coast in the same trip is just the perfect riding holiday.
day 1: Pontal do Coruripe
After the 7 days in the Brazilian Outback, we will take you to Pontal do Coruripe, a small fishing village where you will be lodge in a nice pousada with a great view to the Atlantic Ocean. Our horses will be arriving here today as well. (dinner)
day 2: Pontal do Coruripe - Feliz Deserto (5 hours in the saddle)
We will depart on the beach towards the south in direction to Feliz Deserto. Feliz Deserto means Happy Desert. Shortly after taking the trail to the sea, we will find the mouth of the river Coruripe that gives the name to the location. Ready for some adventure? We will cross the river with horses. Soon after the river crossing, we will stop to refresh ourselves in the sea and meet our back up team waiting for us with coconut water and tropical fruits.
We continue along deserted beaches, here and there we will ride along a beach village and see artisanal fishers. Just before we reach our overnight spot, we find at the beach the Swiss Cargo shipwreck "The Stockholm". Our exclusive Beach House awaits us in Feliz Deserto. Overnight at the Beach House. (Coffea, lunch, snack, and dinner ).
day 3: Feliz Deserto – Coconut Farm - Pontal do Peba (5 hours in the saddle)
Today we will have time to enjoy the best of the region, deserted beaches, a coconut farm, small fishing village. Also, we will have time to bathe in the sea and enjoy the local cuisine with excellent fresh seafood arriving all the time in small boats that dot the coast. Our foot in the sand hostel has a privileged location. Overnight a the beachfront Pousada. (Coffee, Lunch, Snack, and dinner).
day 4: Beach– Dunes – Mouth of the São Francisco River – Maceio (4 hours in the saddle)
After a good breakfast, we mount our horses to start our last riding day. We ride through a coconut forest until we find the vast dune complex we cross the dunes, and before reaching the mouth of the São Francisco River, we will ride along with the quilombola community of Pixaim. (a quilombo is a town of escaped slaves) In Foz, we will enjoy the river swim to refresh ourselves. We will drink from a fresh coconut and eat some snacks. We will leave the horses behind, and hop on a boat to sail the mighty river until arriving at the banks of the river where we will have lunch. Typical seafood of the region will be served in the shade. We will arrive at the end of the afternoon in Maceio.End of the trip (Coffee, lunch, and snack)