Chapada dos Guimarães - City Guide
Visiting Chapada dos Guimarães
Chapada dos Guimarães is a small, tourist friendly town located on the tabalesands atop a cliff 800 meters in elevation above Cuiabá, and just an hour's ride from the Marachel Rondon International Airport. It has long been a favorite weekend getaway for Cuiabanos wanting to escape the heat of the the lowlands bordering the Pantanal. In the last several decades, eco tourists have been exploring the Cerrado biome in Chapada dos Guimarães. The Cerrado is the name for a type of savanna that is nearly endemic to Brazil. It is Brazil's second largest biome, and with over 10,000 plant species is the most bio-diverse Savanna in the world. It is one of the most threatened biomes in Brazil. The city is home to the 3,300 km² Chapada dos Guimarães National Park, with an additional 2,518 km² of protected land. In addition, Chapada dos Guimarães has 46 know archaeological sites, 2 Paleontological sites, 59 springs, 487 waterfalls, 157 km of cliff faces, and 38 endemic species. This as well as the quaint historic town squarer & handicraft fair, a multitude of restaurants and Bed & Breakfasts make Chapada das Guimarães the perfect trip supplement to a Northern Pantanal tour package.
Getting to Chapada dos Guimaraes
Chapada dos Guimarães is located approximately 70 kilometers from Cuiaba, the capital of Mato Grosso. [map]
From the airport
The most economical way to get to Chapada dos Guimarães from the Cuiabá International Airport, called Aeroporto Internacional Marechal Rondon, the principal airport of Mato Grosso is by bus as a taxi can cost upwards of 250 Brazilian reals. If you are traveling light, take the local bus Interurbana 107 Aeroporto / Rodoviária, the ride is about 20 minutes and costs 2.50 Brazilian reals. It passes regularly in front of the airport. In the case that you have a lot of baggage, you can take a taxi to the main bus terminal called Terminal Rodoviário Engenheiro Cássio Vieira de Sá, and the address is:
Terminal Rodoviário Engenheiro Cássio Vieira de Sá
Rua Jules Rimet - Senhor dos Passos,
Cuiabá - MT, 78048-610
Telephone, (65) 3621-3629
The cost of a taxi from the Airport to the Bus Terminal runs between 35 and 40 reals.
From the bus terminal
If you are arriving in Cuiabá by bus, be sure to disembark at the main bus station, Terminal Rodoviário Engenheiro Cássio Vieira de Sá, and not one of the satellite stations or the bus station in Várzea Grande close to the airport. The only local bus line that serves Chapada dos Guimarães is called Expresso Rubi, and there are departures more or less every hour-and-a-half from 6:30 hr to 19h00. Take note that the bus schedule has changed recently and has not been updated on many other sites. They do not have a web site for up to date information. Their address in Chapada dos Guimarães is:
R Antônio Militão, 249 - Santa Cruz
Chapada dos Guimarães, MT 78195-000
The cost of the bus at the time of this update is 12.50 Brazilian reals. For more up to date schedule information feel free to CONTACT US. If you are arriving at the airport and you have a lot of baggage we suggest that you note the name and address of the bus terminal and take a taxi. The cost of a Taxi should run around 35 Brazilian Reals.
|Cuiabá - Chapada dos Guimarães||Chapada dos Guimarães- Cuiaba|
By Rental Car
As a taxi can cost upwards of 250 reals to go to or from Chapada dos Guimarães, renting a car can be a practical option. Since shortly before the World Cup in Brazil, the country has waived the requirement to have an international drivers license, and citizens of most countries can drive with a license from their own country and a tourist visa (if required) of a passport with an entry stamp. Most of the rental agencies are not within the terminal itself, but are within walking distance of the airport. Also, there are a few less reputable agencies that have hidden charges, or make false damage claims against foreigners credit cards after asking you to sign documents in Portuguese that you may not be able to read. If you wish to rent a car please contact us for more detailed recommendations.
Getting Around in Chapada dos Guimarães
It is interesting to note that Chapada dos Guimarães was once, with over 269 km² in area, the world's largest municipality. It makes modern-day countries like Switzerland with with 41.285 km², or the Netherlands with 41.526 km² look paltry by comparison. After the emancipation of Sinop, and Alta Floresta, some 800 km (500 miles) to the north, the municipality currently has 6249,44 km². That said, the urban area is relatively small, and the entire municipality, including the urban areas has a population of under 15,000 people. The urban part of the city can easily be traversed by foot where you can find restaurants, bed & breakfasts and some of the tourist attractions. The city is safe and tourist-friendly. For those planning a trip to the Pantanal with a layover day in Cuiabá, it may be worth the trip up the hill if only for the lower prices for food, drink, hospitality & conviviality compared to the rather impersonal business hotels in the area around the airport in a rather questionable area of the city.