The ecotourism has become more and more popular among tourists who want to have a different experience when leaving home and accepting the challenge of discovering natural places. If you are this kind of tourist, then Serra do Cipó is a spot you should not miss.
The National Park of Serra do Cipó is in the mountain range of Serra do Espinhaço, in the state of Minas Gerais, southeast of Brazil. It is around 100km far from the capital, Belo Horizonte, and its protected area is about 33.800 hectares. This Park gathers the highest number of waterfalls in the state, apart from caverns and natural tracks in the division of two endangered biomes: cerrado and atlantic.
Around 1.600 species of plants, mainly bromeliads and orchids, are hosted in Serra do Cipó. Also, exotic birds like seriemas, toucans, and maritacas inhabit the area. Endangered animals like lobo-guará, tamanduá-bandeira and onça-pintada are protected by a national institute of biodiversity.
After the Portuguese crown invaded Brazil, the east of Minas Gerais (where this Park is located) served as a passage for the expedition team from São Paulo (popularly known as “Bandeirantes”), who were looking for gold and gemstones.
This Park is integrated with a historic road set known as Estrada Real (which means, “Royal Road”), through which slaves transported the gold and other gems from the countryside of Minas Gerais to the ports of Rio de Janeiro. The destination was, obviously, Europe.
These roads crossed beautiful spots like waterfalls and caverns, and the lovers of ecotourism still visit some of them. It is important to mention that in1950 these natural resources turned Serra do Cipó into a Tourist and Cultural Heritage of Minas Geraions; therefore, a perfect spot for ecotourism.
No doubts the waterfalls are the main attractions in this Park, as mentioned before, it has the highest concentration of waterfalls in the whole state of Minas Gerais. There are a few ones you cannot miss, they are perfect for a bath on the hottest days, and they are incredibly photogenic. The most popular is Véu da Noiva, slaves built its access road during the Bandeirantes expeditions.
Cachoeira do Tabuleiro, Cachoeira Grande and Cachoeira da Farofa and a few others are very common, and you will probably see many tourists looking for them as well. If you enjoy hiking, there are several safe paths surrounded by beautiful views, like Trilha dos Escravos, Pico da Lapinha, and Morro da Pedreira. Whatever is your kind of ecotourism, do not worry: in Serra do Cipó you will be able to enjoy it.
Cover Picture © Paralaxis
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