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A photo essay on Serra da Capivara and other beautiful places in Piauí

Valdeci Ribeiro

Intriguing caves, golden plains, the wild cerrado in the middle of a deep canyon. Piauí is a land of contradictions and complements. It has, for example, the only open sea delta in the Americas, even though it’s the Brazilian state with the shortest coastline. It’s also home to one of the most impressive national parks in the country, Serra da Capivara, considered by many researchers as the birthplace of the American man. The images in this essay are part of the book Piauí: Sertão, Rio, Mar, by Piauí-born doctor and photographer Valdeci Ribeiro, who invites readers to quietly contemplate, in an attempt to absorb the inexplicable nature through the eyes.

 

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Rocky cliffs at Cânion do Esporão, on the São Miguel River, a tributary of the Poti

 

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In southeast Piauí, the Desfiladeiro da Capivara circuit stops by such places as the Toca do Inferno. The national park, some 310 miles [500 km] from the state capital, Teresina, is home to over 40,000 rock paintings, like the ones at Toca da Entrada do Pajaú

 

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The Poti River has sculpted rock formations and canyons between Piauí and Ceará in an area that stretches for 112 miles [180 km] and encompasses four municipalities

 

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At the border with Maranhão, the Parnaíba River branches out before emptying into the ocean. The third biggest delta in the world gives way to over 80 islets, like Ilha das Canárias, where the scenery is comprised of dunes and lakes

 

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Another formation of the Parnaíba Delta, Ilha dos Poldros is home to mangroves and paradisiacal beaches, with fresh and saltwater, framed by the rich biodiversity of wild animals and native vegetation

 

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