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History

National Park (2002)

In 1984 federal law declared Jericoacoara an "Environment Protection Area" (APA), and in 2002 the area reached the top Brazilian status of environment protection becoming a National Park.

It became popular amongst backpackers and more adventurous travelers seeking unknown and unusual locations.
In 1984, the "Washington Post Magazine" named Jericoacoara as one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world.
Since then, the small fishing village has been slowly growing. However, thanks to building limitations, you will not find massive buildings or hotels.

The Name

There are several versions on the origin of "Jericoacoara". The most probable is that it is a combination of words from the indigenous Tupi-Guarani language. Yuruco (hole) + cuara (turtle), meaning "hole of the turtles", which refers to the fact that Jericoacoara was and is where sea turtles come to dig holes where they can lay their eggs. However, some fishermen say that the name is inspired by the "serrote" hill that stands next to the village (where the lighthouse is situated). When seen from out at sea, the hill resembles an alligator, which is called a "Jacarequara". One can see how over the years the word for alligator could have evolved into Jericoacoara. Take your pick, either is understandable.