Discover Bahia’s blue caves

There are over 130 mapped caves in the area close to Lençois in Bahia’s Chapada Diamantina, northeast Brazil, many as yet unexplored. This may be the most extensive underground water system in the world. In conjunction with the caves, you’ll find streams of gemstone clarity leading to holes where the pervading limestone has dissolved and the resulting space filled with bright turquoise blue water, the white-ish rock reflecting the sky and sunlight between the months of May and September – so tempting for a dip on a hot day. The caves and pools are defined by weird rock formations, giving the landscape an almost extra-terrestrial aspect. You’ll need a guide safely to visit the most impressive caves, as some
are complex mazes inside and are hidden by forests from the outside.

The most-photographed pools are those at Poço Encantado (Enchanted Grotto) and Poço Azul (Blue Grotto) in the remote east of the Chapada Diamantina.  Swimming is allowed at Poço Azul, and there are limits to the number of daily visitors. Nearby is a medley of tiny settlements which resemble a miniature Lençois of a generation ago before its discovery by adventurous travellers.