Official language: Portuguese
Time zone: UTC -3
Currency: Brazilian real (BRL)
Do you want to try your hand at fishing piranhas? Order an excursion with a boat for a few people to Lago do Maica. The whole trip lasts around 6 hours.
The most obvious is journey by plane. We don’t recommend roads – highways are in bad shape. Popular mean of transportation are river ferries and boats.
40 km from Santarem there is a village built in 1940, where workers of Ford factory used to live. You can see there photos and objects belonging to them.
When in 1661 Portuguese arrived there, they called a town New Santarem, to honour Portuguese city. The area was inhabited by Indians Tapajo, people dealing with agriculture. It is from the name of the tribe, where the name of a river comes from, that provided Indians with water for irrigation of fields. What is interesting, Portuguese did not take the terrain by force, but struck trading contracts with Indians.
The river to this day is enrapturing with its cleanness, thanks to that its banks are popular place for sunbathing. Sandy beaches have almost 100 km of length. Considered as the most beautiful beach in the whole Brazil beach is located just 40 km to the west of Santarem, in a village Alter do Chão. If you just plan to go on a trip there, choose September. At that time in the village takes place a fantastic folklore festival, during which you will get to know music, dance and culture of the most interesting corners of South America.
To get to know the history of the city, step by Centro Cultural João Fona, a museum located in the 19th century residence. You will see there ceramics, which age is estimated at around 5000 years, as well as the newest folk art of Santarem. The place is also not lacking in paintings showing everyday life of locals in times of colonization.
Start your walk by the town from visit at Igreja Matriz da Nossa Senhora da Conceição, a church dated to 18th century, the oldest one preserved in Santarem. Walking alongside the bank, you will see how vibrant with life is the river – bigger and smaller boats all the time bring travellers or take goods, mostly soya, which the region is famous for. On your way step by market – Mercado Municipal, where you can get fresh fishes and local titbit – small shrimps.
Where to eat? In the city built on a river of course the best are fish and seafood dishes. Practically there isn’t a restaurant where they are wrongly prepared. If you will be in the neighbourhood of Praça do Pescador, step by O Mascote, where you can try delicious local cuisine in good price. We especially recommend caldeirada de peixe, something like a stew from what was caught that day in the river.