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When backpacking Brazil, see a landscape of mesas, fantastic rock formations, quartzite caves with crystal clear lakes and underground rivers, and you have some of the wildest Eco adventures in Brazil.
The 152,000 hectare Chapada Diamantina national park in the northeast state of Bahia, had a historical diamond boom, which brought in prospectors, and has natural monuments.
Limestone Walls - State Of Bahia
Two German prospectors discovered a huge vein of diamonds in a region of unusual rock formations, tablelands, subterranean rivers, waterfalls, valleys and mountains called morros at the beginning of the 19th century. The word got out, and the ensuing diamond fever brought a rush of prospectors, who formed the town of Lençóis as a base for explorations into what is now known as the Chapada Diamantina (Brazil's Lost World).
The Chapada Diamantina National Park was created in 1985 and is a region of mixed terrain: waterfalls and pools contrasting with the nearby drought ridden semi arid Sertão, and verdant slopes and red rock mesas fed by the underground water system. This is the cake like layers of sediment once collected on a primeval ocean floor and pushed up to be carved by wind and water into mesas, canyons and caverns.
By road, from Salvador take one of two daily buses operated by the Real Expresso line. It's about a 6 hour trip and approximately 267 miles.
By air, via international or domestic airlines to Rio de Janeiro or São Paulo, then connect to Salvador, then connect again to Lençóis.
Rio de Janeiro
Evening storms provide the almost 7 feet of rainfall a year, but the climate of the Chapada Diamantina makes it an all season destination.
Lençóis is now much smaller and is mainly a tourist oriented town, but was once the 3rd largest town in the northeast state of Bahia. Ask your hotel for help with planning tours with groups of six to ten people or you can arrange tours yourself. Guides who speak english are available.
Lençóis' cobble stoned streets, pastel colored buildings and little churches are a reminder of its wild past and is easy to get around. It has a good selection of lodgings and plentiful restaurants and cantinas where you can sip Brazilian beer and trade stories with the locals and learn about the best hiking spots, and swimming holes. It is the gateway to the Chapada Diamantina National Park.
Chapada Diamantina National Park
The spectacular scenery opened the region to tourism, but the area was off limits and secret for many years to prevent diamond smuggling. Fantastic scenery of mesas, rock formations and underground caves are found in this park.
You can arrange a tour of the park by mule and horses, canoe and by foot, bike, and off road. And you can experience the park in many forms when you combine these activities with a swim in a cool waterhole.
Swim In A Cool Waterhole
The fabulous underground caves and diving spots are what brings many people to the area. Some are open only to highly qualified divers and access to some of these is granted to special groups by the environmental protection agencies.
Fabulous Underground Caves And Diving Spots!
Morro do Camelo
Explore these caves:
Gruta da Lapa Doce
If you're backpacking Brazil, you must see the Chapada Diamantina National Park!
Chapada Diamantina National Park Waterfall
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