With cascades, caves and breathtaking panoramas discover one of the most beautiful natural parks in Brazil – The Chapada Diamantina!
A true « jewel of nature » the Chapada Diamantina is a stark contrast to the semi-arid landscapes further inland or the tropical beaches lined with palm trees that you find in the «fun state».
Located inland in the state of Bahia, about 400km from the regional capital, Chapada Diamantina is a wild and preserved place accessible by air from Salvador every Thursday and Sunday. Various ecosystems, ranging from savannah or bush to tropical forest, cover the 1520km² of this national park. The landscape is made up of high plateaus and valleys interspersed with hundreds of crystal clear rivers forming networks of cascades and pools. It’s an ideal setting for visitors to easily refresh themselves during their excursions.
Today, the Chapada Diamantina has become the most important natural park in Bahia. Its rugged mountain areas and rivers broken up by cascades, and its caves and underground lakes are easily accessible on foot or by vehicle with a local guide. We have chosen tours that will allow you to discover these amazing features relatively comfortably. With a minimum of physical fitness, all vacationers with no special mobility problems can go on our excursions; from 7 years old to 77 years old.
A guide is available to ensure you follow the correct route and that you get the most out of this amazing place, rich in animal and plant life. He will also ensure your tour takes place in the best conditions and at your own pace.
In the Chapada Diamantina tour
The small towns of Lencois and Mucuge
The Lapa Doce caves, of the Blue well and the Enchanted well
The extraordinary view from the top of the Père Inacio mountain
The magnificent Smokey and Mosquito cascades
Our Chapada Diamantina Tour Package
- 1 private vehicle transfer from the Lencois airport to the hotel you have chosen from our selection
- 3 nights in a double room
- 1 days excursion to the Lapa Doce cave, to the Puits du Diable and the Père Inacio mountain with lunch and personal guide included.
- 1 day excursion to the Enchanted well and Mucuge with lunch included and a personal guide.
- 1/2 day excursion to the Mosquito cascade with a private guide
- 1private transfer from your hotel to the Lencois airport
- (Option 4 nights from Sunday to Thursday) 1 days excursion to the Fumaça cascade.
Chapada Diamantina tour offers to discover all its amazing caves and cascades!
Walking is definitely the best way to visit one of the continent’s largest natural parks as the best sites are not accessible by road.
However, even if travelers are not avid climbers they may still wish to discover the natural wonders of this region.
That’s why we have gone to great lengths to create a selection of excursions that present the best of the Chapada Diamantina without forcing you to travel long distances. The tours we offer require little physical effort and allow you to follow the ancient tracks of the garimpeiros, or gem searchers, accompanied by a local guide.
During these excursions you will come across a large variety of wild species which live in the various habitats (savanna, dry forest, rainforest) contained within the mountainous region and in the local canyons called chapadas. These geological formations are characterized by their appearance of truncated mountains with fairly steep walls and whose summits are made up of large rocky plateaus covered with low vegetation. The valleys shelter denser forests and in the most shady, very humid areas, all the diversity of the tropical forest is found.
It’s an ideal landscape with cascades such as the spectacular Cachoeira da Fumaça, the second highest in Brazil, at 340m ! You can go on a beautiful day trip leaving from the Capao valley, with about 500m of descent. (about 5hrs walk or 2hrs by car). In our 4 day package, we offer an excursion to the highest point of the waterfalls to admire a breathtaking view of the valley below and the waterfall.
In our series of spectacular panoramas, there is also the excursion to the top of the Morro do Pai Inacio included in this package that will offer you an amazing sunset over the valley below. From this extraordinary panorama, you can admire the full view of the Chapada in different shades of orange and pink.
Trip to Chapada Diamantina: Stay in the Bahia state water tower.
Thanks to its rugged landscapes and valleys and also its biomass, The Chapada diamantine collects a large quantity of water during the rainy season from October to April.
With dozens of rivers that flow into the valleys it plays a key role as a reservoir for a large part of Bahia state.
For visitors, the obvious benefit is the multitude of cascades, streams, pools and other reservoirs creating lots of amazing places to discover.
Included in our package are some of these must see curiosities. At the Serrano river you will discover the coloured sand hall formed by the erosion of the surrounding sandstone, and also a small crystalline waterfall and the Spring cascade.
You will also visit the vast Lapa Doce cave where mysterious animals seem to come alive in the immense formations. You will visit the Mucugezinho river that flows into a beautiful 20m high cascade, the « Devil’s well » (Poço do Diabo) perfect to bathe in. The most surprising and amazing visit has to be the « Enchanted Well» of Pratinha. You will climb a small ladder to get to an under ground lake of magnificent clear blue water due to an opening in the rock that lets the sun shine on the water. An incredible spectacle when the walls are decorated with multicoloured arabesques, an amazing site !
To finish, a walk to the Mosquito cave. Dominated by the jagged cliffs of the canyons, the rumbling water settles regularly in large natural swimming pools. You can refresh yourself peacefully in these basins whose stones, covered with iron oxide, go through all shades of red.
In this package, you will ot see everything but you will have seen the essentials of this amazing site and so leave with a camera full of amazing pictures and lots of amazing memories of this enchanting place.
Lençois: The gateway to the Chapada Diamantina Natural Park
This region was deserted until they discovered gold here, then diamonds in 1844. These finds provoked a rush of gold and diamond diggers trying to make their fortune.
This is the era when the small village of Lencois was founded and where we suggest you stay.
Lencois means « bed sheets » in Portuguese and the legend says its name comes from the hundreds of tents that appeared in the valley resembling bed sheets drying in the wind. Thanks to the opulence of the local bourgeoisie who were essentially the diamond mine owners, the local architectural development was very important, in Lencois and the other small towns in the region. They still have well preserved, important colonial buildings as well as multicolored houses and small cobbled streets typical of the XVIIIth century that are worth a visit.
For almost a century, Lencois and the surrounding region lived to the rhythm of the pickaxes hitting the stone in the diamond mines but leaving the rest of the landscape intact. Apart from some small peasant villages cultivating coffee, the area was unchanged. After the diamond rush, the region was forgotten; victim of economic decline, the people left and nature took over once again.
It was not until 1973 that the heritage institute classified the region as a National heritage place and stopped all mine works. This pushed Lençois into the tourism industry and in 1985, the Chapada Diamantina National park was created. Until the 1990s this destination remained rather secret and the only visitors were hiking enthusiasts who have contributed to developing this activity in the region.
For the last twenty years, however, the green tourism has developed in and around Lencois that now has a good tourist infrastructure to welcome travelers from around the world while still retaining its charm and authenticity. There are professional guides and hotels of all categories as well as craft shops and restaurants. Everything you need to spend a good holiday!
Reach the Chapada Diamantina Park in Only an Hour from Salvador!
For now there is only the Azul airline company, flying into the Lencois airport leaving from Salvador de Bahia.
There are only 2 flights a week, Sunday and Thursday. So you can choose to stay for either 3, 4 or 6 nights depending on what you want to do during your stay in this fabulous region.
Detailed Program of Our Chapada Diamantina Trip
All excursions included in this program are a private service.
A guide is available during the planned excursions in this program as well as a vehicle to take you to the different sites.
Meals are not included except for the buffet breakfasts at the hotel you are staying at, and the lunches on days 2 & 3 of the excursion.
Day 1 : Salvador de Bahia – Lençois
On a Thursday or a Sunday, you will fly from Salvador at around 14h00 to land at Lencois about an hour later where a vehicle awaits to take you to your chosen pousada or hotel. (It’s possible to travel from Salvador by coach but it takes about 7hrs! contact us)
It takes about 45 minutes to reach Lencois from the airport and you will discover the local countryside which is typical of a semi-arid region where the plants are thick bushes, tropical trees and savannah.
Once in Lencois, the driver will drop you and your luggage off at your hotel or poussada. You will have time to check-in and unpack.
You can either relax or go for a wander in the village and enjoy the calm atmosphere while drinking a local beer « bem gelada » with a few « Petiscos »the local aperitif.
Night at hotel.
Day 2 : Lençois – Grotte de Lapa Doce – Poço do Diabo – Morro do Pai Inacio
After a buffet style breakfast at your hotel, you will meet your guide and set off on various excursions for the day.
In the morning, you will set off by car to the Grotte de Lapa Doce, an hour from Lencois. This immense cave is entered at one end and exited at another with about 900m of trail underground (there is no lighting, everyone has lamps). This cave has some amazing rock formations resembling animals and other natural shapes, formed by the stalactites and stalagmites.
Lunch is at a local restaurant (included in the program).
Then back on the road to the Mucugezinho river. You walk about 15 minutes from the road along the river to the top of a cascade. It drops for about 22metres into a large pool called the «devil’s pit ».a natural pool ideal for bathing in.
After refreshing yourselves, you continue by vehicle to Morro do Pai Inacio, as the best time to visit is the end of the day when the light is the most beautiful. A 20 minute climb gets you to the top of a hill where there is an exceptional view of the valley below and other hilltops in the area.
It’s truly the picture postcard view of Chapada Diamantina, with a panoramic view for miles around seeing canyons and mesas characteristic of this place.
The whole outing lasts about 8hrs, with 150km by car and about 6km on foot.
Return to Lencois and night at your hotel.
Jour 3 : Lençois – Poço Encantado – Mucuge
Your guide will meet you at reception after your buffet breakfast and you will set off in a vehicle for the day’s outing.
The Poço Encantado cave.
Once you are as close as possible by car, you will take a steep track descending into the cave for about 100m. With a helmet and a lamp you will enter the cave. The entrance to the cave is not obvious as you will descend a ladder and lower your head as the ceiling is sometimes quite low. Nothing too difficult though. Once at the bottom of the cave, you will discover a deep pool of crystal clear water that seems to give off a turquoise light. This is due to the sunlight that enters via a hole in the rock reflecting off the water. This combined with the silence of the cave gives an unreal atmosphere.
Once back at the surface, and back at your vehicle, you will continue on to the little town of Mucuge.
This village is at an altitude of 983m and the road climbs up through a magnificent landscape. Once in this pretty village you can wander the historical centre. The climate is cooler and more invigorating and there are pretty colonial houses and also a Byzantine style cemetery!
You will then have lunch in a restaurant suggested by your driver and included in the program.
On the way back you will stop off at the Mucuge National Park to discover the conservation project for a plan called the Sempre Viva (always living).This decorative endemic plant is on the brink of extinction and so an association is trying to save it. You will also visit the « Garimpo » Museum that retraces the history of the diamond miners of the 19th century and you can learn about their daily life and see the reconstitution of their habitat.
If there is enough time, you can take a dip in one of the two waterfalls nearby and enjoy the surrounding nature.
The outing lasts all day and you will do 300km by car and about 3 or 4km on foot. Lunch is included.
After this adventurous day, your guide will drop you off at your hotel for the night.
Day 4 : Lençois – Cachoiera do Mosquito – Salvador de Bahia
In the morning, after your buffet breakfast you will set off with a guide for your last excursion, a visit of the Mosquito waterfall that will take up the morning.
You will set off by car to reach the Fazenda Santo Antonio, a local farm about 32km away then another 8km of track into the heart of the countryside.
On arrival, a short walk of 5 minutes takes you to the top of the waterfall formed by the Mosquito river.
You will see several waterfalls and natural pools and the panoramic view is spectacular.
After a 10 minute walk you will reach the foot of the waterfall where you will see the full magnificence of the 50m cascade that falls between two steep cliffs.
This place is absolutely magic, ideal for swimming in the natural pools formed by the falls.
You will return to Lencois at the end of the morning in time to pack your luggage and check out of your hotel.
At about 13h00, a private transfer will take you to the airport.
Your flight leaves at about 15h30. End of our services.
The lodging selection for a stay in Chapada Diamantina
Pousada Canto no Bosque (standard)
Located 1 and a half kms from the centre of Lencois in 12 000m² of garden, the pousada Canto no Bosque is the ideal place if you are looking for calm & quiet during your stay. The pousada offers rooms for up to 6 people and so is ideal for families, and small bungalows with a terrace surrounded by garden, perfect if you want more privacy. The tree adorned garden also has a swimming pool to relax in after your walks and a restaurant serving local cuisine that saves you having to go back into town to eat. The tables are nicely set outside in the garden. It’s an ideal place to stay for nature lovers. Also perfect for families, with large rooms and a big garden to play in.
Pousada Vila Serrano (standard)
The Pousada Vila Serrano is our favorite place in Lencois. It has 16 rooms and bungalows spread out in a pretty tree lined garden. There is a wide choice of rooms, from a single room to bungalows for up to 4 people and rooms with a mezzanine, all with a private terrace or balcony with a hammock. Each room is carefully furnished with taste respecting the Feng-Shui rules of harmony, and in different styles, colonial with a four poster bed or an ecological-design with wooden furniture designed by Zeca Belmonte. A charming lodge offering excellent value for money for all types of travelers.
Hotel Canto das Aguas (Superior)
The hotel Canto das Aguas is definitely the highest quality hotel you will find in Lencois. On the bank of the river that flows through the village, It has a refined and sophisticated infrastructure all in local materials with a restaurant, a beautiful pool in the form of a stream, a sauna, a spa and massage area, a games room and a solarium on the river bank, We especially recommend the suite rooms which offer extra services and are a very nice size (65 and 80m ²). An excellent choice if you are looking for the best in terms of accommodation in the Chapada Diamantina.