Lagoa Encantada is today an Environmental Protection Area

Lagoa Encantada em Ilhéus
Lagoa Encantada em Ilhéus

The Lagoa Encantada is a large water mirror of 15 square kilometres, where there are floating islands that move according to the wind, waterfalls formed at the mouth of the Apepique and Caldeiras rivers and four caves embedded in an area of Atlantic Forest entirely preserved.

Lagoa Encantada was discovered in 1570 by Pero Vaz Gândaro, a Lusitanian explorer who wrote a book about the southern coast of Bahia and at the beginning of the 19th century, after the opening of the Brazilian ports to foreigners, the German travellers Maximilian of Wied-Neuwied and Martins and Spix covered this paradise of still intact forest.

Known in the past as the lagoon of Ilhéus, it holds the most interesting legends that are part of Ilheense folklore, due to the presence of floating islands that seem to transform into mystical beings, such as the Lobsomen and the Mula-Sem-Cabeça.

See the Costa do Cacau map.

They speak of an underwater kingdom inaccessible to mortals, illuminated ships and even clarinet roosters at dawn. They also say that on a full moon night, those who fish in the lagoon never return. In addition to these myths, the lagoon was once home to manatees that were decimated with harpoons.

Most of the residents are fishermen and riverside farmers, who have recently come to have another expectation of survival, represented by visitation tourism.

Besides the Lagoa Encantada itself and the Almada River, with its potential for water sports, the main attractions of the APA Lagoa Encantada are waterfalls (one of them reaching six metres in height), rapids, trails in the Atlantic Forest and caves.

Video about Lagoa Encantada in Ilhéus

How to get to Lagoa Encantada

You can get to Lagoa Encantada in two ways: by land or through the river.

1. By land

The Lagoa Encantada is 16 km from Ilhéus from BA-001 (Ilhéus-Itacaré) and from there it is another 13 km by a dirt road, difficult to traffic in rainy periods.

2. By River

This is the best option. A boat trip on the Almada River, leaving from the village of Sambaituba. is the largest tourism and travel guide in Bahia.

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