Parque Estadual da Cantareira

Parque Estadual da Cantareira

Parque Estadual da Cantareira
4.5
About
Rising out of the northern frontier of the city and boasting more than 8,000 hectares of unspoiled Atlantic coastal forest, the verdant Parque Estadual da Cantareira (Cantareira State Park) offers rustic hiking trails, swimmable lakes, birdwatching and breathtaking views of the sprawling city below. Next door is the Horto Florestal, the one-time summer mansion of São Paulo state governors, and the monument to the Tropic of Capricorn, which runs through the park.
Duration: More than 3 hours
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles359 reviews
Excellent
195
Very good
136
Average
20
Poor
6
Terrible
2

William Harvey
5 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022
This review is for tourists who do NOT speak any Portuguese, but would like to experience the most spectacular nature São Paulo has to offer: Parque Estadual do Cantareira.

First, it is relatively straightforward to get there and to leave. An Uber from a hotel in Higienópolis costs about R40 ($8), as does the Uber on the way back. I had worried that the area around Cantareira is far enough from most of the city that it might not be possible to get an Uber on the way back. However, this turned out NOT to be an issue.

Cantareira is gigantic, and has four main entry points (which they call "nucleos"), each of which has trails: Pedra Grande, Aguas Claras, Engordador, and Cabucu. I chose to visit Pedra Grande for the panoramic view of São Paulo it purports to offer.

My Uber first took me to the entrance to Pedra Grande. It was closed, and I was directed to what appeared to be the entrance to a different park! I was alarmed to find myself in Parque Estadual Alberto Löfgren, not Cantareira! For a while I thought, oh no, I guess I'll have to go to a different park.

I walked past a colonial café, which was probably a mistake: it looked charming, had a strolling violinist, and table service, so I'm going to go ahead and recommend that you, dear reader, plan on going there. The Löfgren Park is a little too permissive, and had a large group playing "music" at a horrifically loud volume (precisely the sort of thing I had left the city proper in order to avoid). In desperation to escape, I started up an unpaved trail. Big mistake! Those are quite muddy, and I ended up falling quite a distance, getting mud all over the back of my clothes.

Back on the paved trail, I started seeing signs: this park is actually connected to Cantareira! In fact, when the main door for the Pedra Grande access to Cantareira is closed, you are in fact SUPPOSED to enter through Löfgren! This is good for you to know.

Löfgren is free, but if you follow the signs for Cantareira, eventually you will reach a checkpoint and have to pay R 30 ($6). The attendant was friendly and even spoke a little English. Credit card was accepted.

Once you are in Cantareira, the trail to the Pedra Grande is very clearly marked and is paved. For slightly over 3 kilometers (2 miles), it never rises very steeply. There's never much of a view, as you are going through dense jungle the whole time, with occasional benches.

Eventually, the jungle clears away, and you're finally at Pedra Grande (big rock). Every inconvenience you might have endured up till this point is suddenly worth it: the view is spectacular! Leave plenty of time for pictures. A café with more spectacular views is right next to the rock, but all they have are pre-packaged mass-produced sandwiches, chips, cookies, soda, and small coffees and teas, so it might be good to bring your own food, buy a canned beverage at the café, and then picnic while admiring the spectacular view.

The descent is very easy, and as mentioned, there were no issues getting an Uber back. One important point: although you cannot enter or leave through the main access point for Pedra Grande, there is a very helpful English-language sign near that entrance which explains the system of the four nuclei and shows each trail. It would be good to study that before or after your ascent, so that you can eventually go to the other three nuclei (via Uber) and try the other trails.
Written 4 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ScooMcGru
Williams, AZ29 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2022 • Couples
If you’re looking for a pleasant hike near Sao Paulo, this is a good choice. Entrance is Free if you are over 60. It’s a steady uphill to the Big Rock. Bear in mind that the entire route is a paved road, not a forest trail— a little harsh on the feet. But the forest IS beautiful, and the view from the Rock is great.
Written 26 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

peter k
North Vancouver, Canada130 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019 • Solo
Offers a great panoramic view of
Sao Paulo from here , although the way up is very steep in some places.Saw virtually no wildlife , just a fleeting glance of a small bright green bird , but you can sure hear it.Did see a huge spider and some really brilliant blue butterflies.There's a lot of exotic tropical vegetation including rubber trees with massive leaves and ferns 10 feet tall and up.There are also lots of very quiet, lightly travelled side trails , though with nothing much to see along the way.Because of time constraints I did not have the chance to see the lake or the waterfall.A vast and very peaceful place well worth a return visit.
Written 4 May 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Renan T
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2017 • Couples
Best place to enjoy the nature in the city. This park is even more quiet and relaxing than Ibirapuera Park.
Cantareira park, offers lots of tracks and adventure near by huge variety of animals. This park is also a nice place to enjoy a nice day of picnic and sports.
The main difficult is how you get over there once this part of the city doesn't offer subway's structure. I suggest you to pick up an Ubber from Santana subway station.
Written 17 February 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

nanahls
Copenhagen, Denmark16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2016 • Family
Great option for a day hike and to see nature while still in SP.
The park has 3 entrances and 4 trails. The 2 main trails are accessible through the main entrance and go to Pedra Grande (with a great view of the city - 6Km total) and a lagoon called "Lagoa das Carpas" (9km total). These two are steep trails but with with well maintained paths. The other two are flat and will take you to two waterfalls. The guides suggest to go on Saturdays and early in the morning, when it's not so busy. Park opens at 8am.
Written 18 February 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Encieh E
33 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2015 • Friends
That was amazing when the view of SP appears after a long walk. SP is under your feet there. One should experience it. If you are lucky you can also see some local animals. If you pass there do not miss Alberto Lofgren Park. It is too close to Cantareira.
Written 27 September 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

harmonyeli
71 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2015 • Friends
A treeking in the middle of nature, seems be dificult but it isn t , you see children and old people doing the treeking, could take a time but the view, the fresh air, and the oppotunity to be in contact with nature it works.
Written 12 August 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Molnar71
Toronto, Canada84 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2013 • Couples
Despite being a little of the beaten track, it´s a great place to spend a Saturday or a Sunday morning in a big forest inside Sao Paulo. There are good and well preserved trails, lots of photo opportunities with monkeys, tropical flora and a nice view of Sao Paulo from above. If you want to avoid crowds, it´s better to visit on Saturdays mornings. If you decide to go all the way to the top of Pedra Grande trail, keep in mind that it´s a steep trail but it´s not so difficult. You will meet people of all ages doing this trail.
Written 7 October 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lucas10demais
14 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2013 • Friends
If you want to enjoy a nice and light walking, you can visit this park. From the top, in clear days, you may a have a great view of all this concrete jungle always surrounded by mountains. It may take between one or two hours to reach the top depending on your fitness. You can grab some snacks up there. Make sure you walk the trail through the forest instead of going to the top by car, its funnier, healthier and worth the effort.
Written 9 September 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andrea A
Sao Paulo, SP39 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2013 • Couples
The place is very beautiful, has paved road and dirt. At the park entrance has a map showing the trails within the park. Recommend to take your food and drink to picnic, because at the end of the trail has a grassy area, wooden tables, and children's toys outdoors, really cool!! It is an ideal place for couples, family, friends ...
Written 8 August 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Parque Estadual da Cantareira - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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