FAQ

COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT
CHAPADA DOS GUIMARÃES

This section brings, at the moment, answers to
questions about tourism in Chapada dos Guimarães.
New answers will be added with the inclusion
of the next destinations, Pantanal and Nobres.




What's the distance from the Cuiabá's airport to Chapada?

Chapada is 61km from Cuiabá, following the MT-251 road. Added to this, are the 17km across Várzea Grande and Cuiabá (Marechal Rondon airport is not really in the capital, but in its neighbor city, in the opposite side by the Cuiabá river). The transfer takes approximately 1h30m.



Is it easy to go by bus from Cuiabá to Chapada?

There are urban bus lines from the airport to the bus station, from where the buses depart to Chapada at 6:30AM, 8:00AM, 09:30AM, 11:00AM, 1:00PM, 2:30PM, 4:00PM, 6:00PM and 7:00PM) Look for the Rubi/Rapido Chapadense's ticket window.



Should I rent a car?

If you bring a lot of luggage, if you booked your lodging in a pousada far from the city center, if you want mobility to visit self-guided attractions or choose a restaurant, it is advisable to rent a car. Also hiring tours to the attractions of Chapada is cheaper if you have own transport. However, circuits of the National Park such as the Stone City and the Vale do Rio Claro require a vehicle with 4WD traction, whose rent for several days ends up coming out more expensive than the contracting of transport for these unforgettable tours, that can be done in a single-day combo.



Do I need to book accommodation in advance?

On extended holidays such as carnival and year-end festivities, in addition to events such as the Chapada Winter Festival (this year in June), the number of tourists increase and, in addition to being scarce, last-minute lodging can be more expensive. Look for reference on the chosen lodging in credibility review sites like Tripadvisor. Since the FIFA World Cup in 2014, a series of 'Bed & Breakfast' inns have opened in Chapada, not all of them registered in Cadastur and some may not meet the expectations of those who want a standard hotel service.



Do I need to schedule my tours in advance?

It is a good practice to research the tours in some advance. The tourist may choose to hire a private guide or join larger groups formed at the agencies to reduce the cost of the tour. Just as in the case of lodging, dates of holidays often create discomfort for laggards.
For rides that need 4WD transport the issue is especially delicate, and on holidays the daily limits of visitors in some circuits of the National Park can be reached with days in advance. On days off special dates, the scheduling is easier, but with less chances to form groups.



Should I get vaccinated against yellow fever? Are there cases of malaria in Chapada?

In Chapada dos Guimarães there are no cases of Yellow Fever or Malaria, but it is a good practice, in almost all of Brazil, mainly in the summer, to guard against Aedes Aegypti, the mosquito that transmits dengue and zika viruses.



What are the Drought and Rain periods?

Drought begins with the arrival of winter in June, although atypical rains have occurred in late July or early August, reducing the burning problem that has plagued the whole of central-western Brazil during this period. The rainy season begins in September, with the single 'Cashew's Rain', which triggers many species of plants for flowering and/or fruiting. After this usually strong and unique rain, it only rains sparsely in October or early November, gradually increasing until January and February. Afterwards, the rain will continue decreasing until the end of May. The average annual rainfall is 1593mm.



What is the temperature of the region?

Chapada dos Guimarães has an average temperature of 22.2°C and can reach peaks of up to 37°C in the middle of the day at certain times of the year. Usually the temperature is around 5°C less than Cuiabá - at a geographic distance of only 30km but with a difference of more than 500m elevation. The difference in temperature between elevations near the slope of the sandstone wall (colder) and depressions of the plateau, such as the valley of the Casca river (hotter) can be striking.
During the winter, the sky is blue, the south wind keeps the air dry and the climate is hot, except when the polar masses arrive from Patagonia, bringing the cold that historically reached 0°C at night; Today, with climate change, the minimum temperature is around 4°C at the peak of so-called friagem. This climate usually lasts around 2 or 3 days, after which the sunny days come back and the temperature rises again.



What is the best time to visit the Chapada?

The clear sky, the clarity and quantity of water, the green of the vegetation make the May period the most inviting of all. But the winter from June to September is the high season of the Pantanal, just 170km away from Chapada, so many tourists take advantage of the opportunity to visit Chapada at this time, which is not so less inviting, except for the fires that leave the air smoky and less conducive to enjoy the viewpoints and oyher distant landscapes.



Can I do abseiling in Chapada?

As the geological formation of Chapada dos Guimarães is composed of different types of sandstone - some quite fragile - the practice of rappelling, climbing or similar activities can lead to accidents and landslides without warning. Thus, abseiling is prohibited in the area of the National Park and is carried out in very specific and prepared places, especially abseiling in waterfalls, without touching the stone's surface, offered by specialized agencies like Chapada Aventura.



Are there tours that include an overnight stay inside the National Park?

It is forbidden to camp inside the National Park, except for the walk called Travessia where the night is camped in the area called Casa do São Jerônimo, which includes a climb to Mount S. Jeronimo on the first day and a descent down the Carretão trail to the S. Jeronimo community the next day, but which can be replaced by another activity, such as the Circuito das Cachoeiras. This camping night should be accompanied by a qualified guide or conducer for this itinerary (not all of them, please inquire).



How can I observe birds and other animals during my stay?

As the National Park allows regular visitation only from 8:30AM to 4:30PM, the best birding and other wildlife shows are not normally available to nature lovers in its area. To get early access to the privileged points such as the Stone City road, S. Jeronimo trail and Cachoeirinha trail, program in advance with your nature guide to schedule in the Park and obtain special permission. One can also opt for lodging in propitious inns, located outside the urban center, such as Cantos da Mata in the Jamacá Valley and the Pousada do Parque, near the limit of the National Park. Other birdwatching points on the surroundings are indicated with in the Chapada Maps section under the 'National.Park' submenu tab.



What is there to see in the city of Chapada?

In addition to the attractions of ecotourism that you can find in Chapada's page, under the 'Attractions' tab of the submenu, you can find interesting points in the city, such as the Museum of Memory, in Quinco Caldas Street, almost opposite the BR Gas Station; The Bordadeiras (embroiderers) of Chapada, which have their headquarters also near the BR Post, on the other side of the street. Another option to buy regional handicraft souvenirs is the Chapada à Mão, a shop of the Chapada Artisans' Association located on Fernando Correa Street, next to Dom Wunibaldo Square, in the center. And, of course, you can not miss a visit to Santana Church, also in Dom Wunibaldo Square, built in 1779 in a primitive baroque style and listed by IPHAN (Institute of Brazilian Historical and Artistic Heritage). In addition, the city has several restaurants with typical regional food, ice cream shops that offer savory flavors of the Cerrado fruit and much more.



What are the food options in the city?

Hotels and inns in Chapada generally do not offer full board, since most tourists spend the day outside on the tours (except for the Pousada Cantos da Mata, in the Valley of Jamacá, and the Pousada do Parque, located next to the limits of the National Park, who ask to be informed in advance of the intention of having lunch or dinner there).
Most of the restaurants in the city run on a self-service basis for lunch and in the evenings they serve à la carte. Towards the end of the afternoon, when you are hungry after the trail, the options are few: the Morro dos Ventos is open until dusk and the Véu-de-Noiva, a restaurant inside the National Park near the belvedere of the great waterfall of the same name, is a great option that stays open until 4:30PM, when the visitation time ends.
An option to eat a great fish, the only place in Chapada where the delicious piraputanga (fish similar to trout) and matrinchã from Amazon are served, besides the pintado and pacu classics fish of the region, is the Recanto do Cerrado, next to Pousada Penhasco, which opens for lunch from Thursday to Sunday and for dinner only with reservation.
If you like to eat well before going on the trail, establishments such as the Hotel Turismo in the city center and Pousada Cambará in Florada da Serra neighborhood offer guests a colonial coffee with delicious breads, cheeses, jams and other items of own preparation. It is customary in many inns that tourists bring a sandwich and fruit from the coffee to the trail (but without abuse).



What other places can I visit from Chapada dos Guimarães?

In addition to Bom Jardim, Nobres' district where the attractions of the municipality are located, and Poconé, where Transpantaneira Road-Park (both are located about 170km from Chapada, in different directions) begins, you can also find interesting attractions in the Capital Cuiabá, such as the neighborhood São Gonçalo Beira Rio, where you can enjoy fish in small restaurants on the banks of Cuiabá and visit the houses of craftsmen who sell ceramics with regional motifs. Another choice may be the Mercado do Porto, rich in colors, smells and typical flavors, good to be visited in the morning.
And the nightlife in Cuiabá has many options, among them the SESC Arsenal, in the 13 de Junho Street (where is also the traditional Casa do Artesão, with varied souvenirs and even handmade decorated hammocks), in the city center, with a bar and restaurant in an open and pleasant area in the center of the old armory that preserves the original lines, as well as having exhibitions, plays and other artistic and cultural activities as a must-see 'bulixo' on Thursdays, with a handicraft and typical foods fair under the internal balconies that surround the space.



Why do I need a guide to visit the National Park and other private attractions of Chapada dos Guimarães?

During the period of existence of the National Park, since 1989, problems such as garbage, predation, fires and clandestine trails were common, until the famous accident of 2008 occurred when a large rock detached from the top of the Véu-de-Noiva waterfall causing death of a tourist. Due to intricacies of the Brazilian legislation in cases like this, the National Park suffered an action moved by the family of the victim. Even though the event was a fatality, it was credited to the responsibility of the Chico Mendes Institute (ICMBio), which manages the country's Conservation Units. This led the administration to close the Unit to visitation until the safety standards set forth in the Park Management Plan (in practice, 'closed forever', given the few funds allocated to the Environment by the government).
At the end of 2009, almost completing 2 years of closing, the Chapada dos Guimarães Ecotourism Guides and Conducers Association (AGCE) presented a project based on the Park Management Plan, defining the maximum daily load of visitors in each trail, the maximum number of people in each group, the correct trails for use and for rescue and the delivery of access keys for each attraction, thus taking responsibility for groups security. Since then, the accompainment of the guides and conducers has been incorporated as standard in all attractions that include long trails in delicate areas, solving most of the problems that existed before and providing to visitors a safe and enjoyable leisure.


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