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Piauí is one of the largest states in the Northeast but is one of the least visited despite boasting several fantastic natural attractions. One reason that it remains off the tourism radar is that, unlike its neighbors, it has only a short stretch of coastline and its biggest city is far inland.

The colonization of Piauí began in the arid southern sertão (backlands of the Northeast) and gradually moved north toward the coast, creating an oddly shaped territory with underdeveloped infrastructure. It is one of the poorest states but in general it's orderly and easy to visit.

In the north it's dominated by the evergreen wonderland of the Delta do Parnaíba; to the south it opens out into large expanses of flat agricultural plains punctuated by fine areas of wilderness including Parque Nacional da Serra da Capivara and Parque Nacional de Sete Cidades.