Explore the Atlantic Forest’s Nucleo Pedra Grande Da Canteria!
If you want to head someplace truly special, why not experience Nucleao Pedra Grande Da Canteria, the largest urban yet native forest in the entire world? With 8,000 hectares of space – that’s an approximate equivalent of 8,000 football fields – the park is situated right behind another of Sao Paulo’s incredible State parks, Horto Florestal. The longest trail in the park will actually take you right to the Pedra Grande, which you’ll definitely want to see.
It’s a seven mile trail inward to Pedra Grande, but once you’ve reached this giant rock, you’ll have a spectacular view of the city! Nucleo Pedra Grande Da Canteria is a unique attraction of Sao Paulo, and it should take approximately 45 minutes to drive to the park’s gates from the center of the city. The best plan is to take a cab there and ask for the driver to wait for you and take you back after you’ve spent time there – after all, it’s best to have a secure plan to get where you’re going afterward.
There is plenty of wildlife around Nucleo Pedra Grande Da Canteria, you only need to look very closely to see tiny, curious eyes peep out at you from all around! Troupes of monkeys swing through the tree branches, while colorful birds sing to each other in their distinct and harmonious voices. Jaguar and deer also make their home amidst this forest, however they tend to be somewhat more shy with visitors, and you’d be lucky to see them around.
Once you’ve seen the Nucleo Pedra Grande Da Canteria, you might be inclined to stop at a few other spots inside of the park, such as the Clear Water area and the Engordador, a farm for local cattle. Since the park is well monitored by the local tourism industry and Forestry Institute, all paths are clean, well lit, and marked out clearly so that you always know where you’re going. However, since this park truly focuses on getting back to nature, there are no little coffee or snack shops, unlike at some of Sao Paulo’s other parks. Bring a snack and plenty of water, and make sure that you’re wearing comfortable clothes for walking.
The Clear Water stop is a calm boulevard lined with Atlantic Forest ferns and pines, and there is a trail of around 4 miles that can be trekked here. Should you choose to take a trip to Engordador, you’ll find that there is both a walking and a biking trail, and you’ll come alongside a river area. The trail is fairly short and only takes around 40 minutes to walk, but the bike trail also includes the sight of an historic hydraulics house built in 1894.
Once you’ve experienced the joy of a beautiful city view and marveled at the Pedra Grande, why not relax at the peaceful picnic area and allow the children to play on the playground set?
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