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Brazil was voted the world’s best adventure tourism destination by US News & World Report. The attractive travel destination scored more than 80 points out of a total of 100 in the categories climate, scenery and fun. The offerings are varied and extend from north to south – from Botas in the São Paulo countryside to Foz do Iguaçu in Paraná, via the Chapada dos Veadeiros in Goiás to Captólio in Minas Gerais. The full ranking can be found here: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-countries/rankings/adventure.
Ecotourism and adventure tourism accounted for 18.6% of international tourists in Brazil (2019 data collection). Attractions in Brazil include beaches, mountain or desert landscapes, tropical rainforests, and national parks.
Trekking, mountain biking, horseback riding, surfing, kite surfing, hang gliding, sailing, diving and much more can all be explored in Brazil on adventure trips for both beginners and experts.
Tijuca National Park
The Tijuca National Park is present in almost every image of Rio de Janeiro and its history goes back a long time: its forests are the result of the first major reforestation project in the world. After the near-complete destruction of the forest for coal production and coffee plantations, the city’s water sources gradually dried up. As a result, planting over 100,000 trees began in 1861. A visit to the lush forests of Tijuca National Park demonstrates nature’s ability to recover.
Tijuca National Park is home to around 200 kilometers of hiking trails of varying difficulty. Those looking for easier routes can take the Dom Pedro Augusto path, which is also accessible to the visually impaired and people in wheelchairs. For the more adventurous, there are long-distance or high-difficulty routes such as the Circuito dos Picos and the Pedra da Gávea. The famous and very popular hang-gliding ramp on the top of Pedra Bonita is ideal for a particularly wide view.
Cycling is possible on all roads in the park, in particular on Vista Chinesa, which also has a protected pavilion. The park’s mountains also offer over 300 climbing routes. Beginners can practice at Campo Escola das Paineiras or Campo Escola 2000 in Setor Floresta. Experienced mountaineers can climb routes on the 842 meter high Pedra da Gávea rock or even a large wall on the Corcovado mountain “Gobbo”.
A swim in the park’s waterfalls is also recommended. The waterfalls of Horto (Primatas, Quebra, Chuveiro, among others), the waterfall of Almas and the Paineiras are the best known.
Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park
The “Chapada dos Veadeiros” plateau has an area of over 240 hectares, is located in the middle of Brazil in the Cerrado savannah region and is surrounded by waterfalls and gorges. Here you will discover some of the most famous waterfall routes in the region, such as the Rei do Prata waterfall, famous for its emerald waters. The trails are suitable for travelers who want to be as independent as possible in their adventures. They have easy to moderate difficulty and take visitors to mountains, valleys, and waterfalls without much effort.
The Vale da Lua with its extraordinary rock formations is one of the most famous and visited attractions of the Chapada dos Veadeiros. The rocky landscape of the “Valley of the Moon” has been smoothed by the water of the São Miguel River over the years and has already been the scene of numerous series and films. The numerous rapids, basins and small beaches on the edge of the rapids around Vale da Lua invite you to swim.
The nearby town of Alto Paraíso de Goiás is considered one of the most important points for tourists. Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park is located 230 km from Brasilia International Airport (BSB). From the Brazilian capital, tourists can rent a car or take a bus to the interstate bus station.
Lençóis Maranhenses National Park
Lençóis Maranhenses National Park covers an area of 155,000 hectares, making it the largest dune park in Brazil. Above all, it is characterized by its fine white sand, and the freshwater lagoons in the dunes are unique in the world. Those visiting Lençóis Maranhenses can spend days on the beaches of Caburé and Atins, hike along Rio Preguiças and Rio Formiga, and even try kite surfing. Adventurers can experience the site on three to five day hiking trails. One of the most popular routes is the Lagoa Bonita circuit, which climbs a steep climb of dunes. The 30-meter climb is rewarded with a view of one of the most beautiful landscapes in the national park. If you want to cross all of Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, the best way is to drive from Atins to Santo Amaro. The crossing takes you through the dunes and along the sea, passing by remote places such as the islet of Queimada dos Britos and the small community of Baixa Grande.
Lençóis Maranhenses is located in the state of Maranhão, 250 km from the capital, São Luís. The best airport to reach Lençóis Maranhenses is São Luís International Airport (SLZ), which has direct flights from several Brazilian cities, including São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Barreirinhas is close to Lençóis Maranhenses and is easy to reach. The journey between São Luís and Barreirinhas takes an average of four hours by bus or minibus.
Foz do Iguaçu National Park
The waterfalls of the Foz do Iguaçu National Park come from the waters of the Iguaçu River, which separates Brazil and Argentina. On the Brazilian side, the falls are particularly visible when walking the 1,200-meter-long waterfall trail, which leads up stairs and offers numerous viewpoints. Coati, birds and butterflies are often spotted in the trees along the trail. Visitors can get particularly close to the falls on boardwalks and see Devil’s Throat, the largest of the 275 falls, from a steep angle.
In addition to the traditional waterfall trail, it is worth seeing the Poço Preto trail, a nine-kilometer ecological hike in the middle of the forest, after which you can immerse yourself in the waters of the Iguaçu River by kayak. Activities such as rock climbing and Macuco Safari, a popular boat tour on the Iguaçu River, are also offered in the park.
Iguaçu National Park is located approximately three kilometers from Foz do Iguaçu Airport (IGU). The route can be covered by buses, collective transport of travel agencies, taxis and rental cars.
Petra Maier / Annika Kuhnl
Hill + Knowlton strategies
Darmstädter Landstr. 112, 60598 Frankfurt am Main
Original content by: Embratur, broadcast by news aktuell