Tips, advice and a travel guide to exploring the region of Mundau and Flexeiras on Brazil’s Northern coast a little West of Fortaleza. Visited: May 19-20 2008
Our one month trip to North Brazil’s beaches began with an early arrival in Fortaleza, where we picked up a hire car and drove 2 and a half hours North West to Mundau.
I chose to stay in a hotel in Mundau, but with hindsight Flexeiras would have been better…
From Trairi, signposted off the BR222, the road runs to the coast. The beaches in this part of Brazil are long, empty and very pretty as they’re backed by huge sand dunes. Once you hit the coast on the drive from Trairi, there’s a long at beautiful coastal road. To the right lies Flexeiras and subsequently Guajiru, to the left is Mundau.
We headed left for about 8km to Mundau, a large fishing village that could almost be described as a small fishing town. The village itself is pretty run down and disorientating, but the nearby scenery quite spectacular. Walk or drive just West of Mundau, past the stunning sand dunes and freshwater lakes to a small river that can be crossed by raft - there’s almost always someone waiting to take you (and your vehicle or beach buggy if you’ve rented one) across for about $3. Once across the river we walked for hours along beautiful sand dune backed beaches and saw only a couple of Brazilian fishermen the whole time.
Mundau is not a particularly pretty village, though the surroundings are. It’s the type of town where, during Brazil’s off peak tourism season, it’s hard to find a restaurant or place to eat. There’s about half a dozen pousadas in town, none of which are particularly recommendable except perhaps Pousada Beach House which is almost at the end of the village and Hotel Mundau Dunas, very overpriced but with a swimming pool and located on the outskirts of town towards the sand dunes. However, Hotel Mundau Dunas’ restaurant gave me a dodgy stomach, which might be explained by the rat I just saw as I’m writing this in the hotel…
While Mundau has the more beautiful scenery nearby, about 12km East is Flexeiras, a more beautiful village, and better base to explore this region of Brazil, which is a couple of hours West of Fortaleza. Flexeiras has a choice of good looking restaurants, as well as a handful of beach front pousadas and hotels (Mundau’s pousadas aren’t really on the beach). Flexeiras is clearly more geared towards tourism than Mundau, though everything remains low key and laid back in this small village. Beach buggies can easily be hired to explore the beautiful region, including the Mundau area. There’s a wider range of more attractive accommodation options in Flexeiras, plus even more options in the equally attractive, but smaller village of Guajiru which is about 1km further East along the coast.
My Brazil travel tip - use Flexeiras as a base for two or three nights to explore this region by dune buggy.