Trek the Espinhaço Mountain Range in Brazil

Hike through the remote Serra do Espinhaço Biosphere Reserve on the way to Brazil’s third largest waterfall, 273 metres high. 3 days.

Trek across the Serra do Espinhaço, home to sixteen protected reserves and biospheres, including three UNESCO World heritage sights. Swim in mountain pools and sleep in mountain huts.

Your hassle-free adventure includes:

  • 2 nights accommodation
  • Experienced, English speaking guide
  • 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners and trail snacks
  • Drinking water
  • Airport transfers to and from the start of the trail

Perfect for: Active travellers who want to leave the other tourists behind and explore one of the most diverse mountain landscapes in the country.

Need To Know

We’ve teamed up with the guys at World Nomads to offer insurance designed for adventurous travellers across 140 countries that includes overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities. To get yours sorted, click here.

Tancredo Neves International Airport is 28 kilometres from Belo Horizonte, the capital of Minas Gerais State. It is well served by flights from both Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, which take around 1 hour and fifteen minutes from both, along with direct flights from most airports across Brazil.

The trip starts early on day one at 08:00, so you’ll either need to book a very early flight or arrive the day before. You’ll return to the airport at 18:00 on the final day of the trip, so book a late flight or again, stay another night in Belo Horizonte.

From the UK you can fly via Lisbon with TAP or Paris with Air France directly into Belo Horizonte.

A filling breakfast of eggs, bread, cheese or fruits will be provided. During the day while hiking, food will include freshly made sandwiches, dried fruits, cereals, nuts, and cookies. Dinner in the evening will be simple but filling, usually meat and vegetables.

We are able to cater to dietary requirements - please let us know at time of booking.

The weather is hot all year round in this part of Brazil, with temperatures between 18°C and 30°C in the summer months of October to April. The rainfall is also highest in these months however, so you should be prepared for showers, with November to February being the wettest.

Between May and September is the best time to travel, with lower rainfall and cooler temperatures of 15°C and 25°C.

You’ll need to pack:

  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Good walking boots
  • Swimming costume and lightweight towel
  • A hat
  • Comfortable clothes suitable for hiking

Absolutely! The trip runs with a minimum group of one and a maximum of fifteen, so you’ll be hiking with other like-minded travellers. Lot’s of people book our trips as a solo traveller - it’s a great way to meet people.

There is only one particularly steep section on this trek, however a medium level of fitness is required and the ability to walk across rough terrain for around eight hours.

There is an option to hire a donkey for the backpacks should you wish to.

The only extra costs are any personal expenses or soft drinks you wish to purchase (drinking water is provided).

There is the option to pay for donkeys to transport your backpacks for you so you can just hike with everything you need for the day.


View map

Situated in the south east of Brazil, Minas Gerais is the fourth largest state in the country and a major producer of coffee. Its capital Belo Horizonte (Beautiful Horizon) is the third largest city in Brazil after Rio and São Paulo and is completely surrounded by mountains.

Running for 1,100 kilometres across three states, the Espinhaço Mountains are home to sixteen protected reserves, biospheres and national parks, as well as three UNESCO World heritage sights. Renowned for its biodiversity and sheer variety of climates, the range includes mountain savannah and Atlantic rainforest.

Start point?

Your guide will collect you from Tancredo Neves International Airport at 08:00 on the first day, or from your hotel in Belo Horizonte.

Finish point?

At the end of the trek you will be returned to either Tancredo Neves International Airport or the city of Belo Horizonte, arriving at around 18:00.

Getting there and away?

Tancredo Neves International Airport is 28 kilometres from Belo Horizonte, the capital of Minas Gerais State. It is well served by direct flights from both Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, which take around 1 hour and fifteen minutes from both. If you’re coming from anywhere else in Brazil the airport is well connected, with a wide choice of indirect flights with short stopovers - common when flying internally in Brazil.

From the UK, British Airways operate direct flights to both Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, with LATAM also flying direct to São Paulo. There are also a wide choice of airlines that fly indirect via Europe, including TAP who fly via Lisbon directly to Belo Horizonte if you want to start or end your time in Brazil with this trip.

What to Expect

Day 1: Trek through the Espinhaço Mountains

Meet your guide at Tancredo Neves International Airport (Formerly International Airport Confins).

Travel by road for around two and-a-half hours to Lapinha da Serra, a quiet village in the foothills of the Espinhaço Mountains.

After a briefing from your guide, follow the banks of the nearby lagoon before heading up into the mountains themselves.

Trek through the Espinhaço range, with plenty of breaks to enjoy the seemingly endless views over plunging green valleys and strange towering rock formations.

Arrive at a mountain hut, your home for the night and settle in for dinner and a sierra sunset.

Total walking time around 5 hours

Day 2: Trek to Waterfalls and Mountain Pools

After breakfast set off once again into the mountains.

Follow the trail across rivers and through a vast expanse of untouched nature to the next mountain hut, where you’ll stay tonight.

Leave your backpack behind and hike to the Tabuleiro waterfall, the third largest falls in the country, where frothing white water hurtles out of high cliffs and down into the valley below you.

Take a wild bath in a mountain pool or a shower beneath one of the smaller waterfalls, then follow the trail back to the mountain hut for dinner and another sunset.

Total walking time around 8 hours

Day 3: Hike through the Parque Estadual Serra do Intendente State Park

Wake up and have breakfast in the mountains once more.

Hike to the entrance of the Parque Estadual Serra do Intendente State Park, 135 square kilometres of protected wilderness that includes the base of the Tabuleiro waterfall.

Enjoy the view back over the route you’ve followed and take a well-earned hot shower in the village of Tabuleiro.

Journey back by road, stopping at the strange hermit statue of Juquinha, before returning to either Tancredo Neves International Airport, or the city of Belo Horizonte, where your mountain adventure will end.

Total walking time around 3 hours


On both nights you’ll stay in mountain huts in dorm style rooms. Both huts have hot water and there is usually an option to upgrade to a double room (subject to availability). Simple but clean and a comfortable way to spend a night on the mountain.

Loading Reviews...