Looking for a unique and exceptionally beautiful view over the city of Rio de Janeiro? One that isn’t too tough to reach? Hike up to Pedra Bonita – “Beautiful Stone” in English and enjoy the view from Pedra Bonita while you are watching people jumping from the rock with their delta wings and hang-gliders.
|Duration: 40-60 min up and down
Distance: 1,2 km
When to hike: The hike is possible to do throughout the whole year.
What to bring: Hiking boots/Trainers, mosquito repellent, sunscreen, food and water.
How to get to Pedra Bonita
The hike starts inside of Tijuca National Park. The best way to get to Pedra Bonita is by car or taxi. If you are coming from Copacabana/Ipanema/Leblon, take the tunnel Zuzu Angel. When you get out of the tunnel, continue about 1 km and you will see Gavea Golf & Country Club on your right side. After the golf club, take the third street up to the right, called Estrada das Canoas.
Follow this road for about 10 min and you will see a big sign on your right telling you to drive to the left to reach Pedra Bonita. This street leads directly to the entrance of the trail, parking and basic restrooms are available. See map below for more information.
When you get to the first parking lot, right before the big hill going up to the hang-gliding ramp, go back 5 meteres. Here, you will see a small ranger post next to the entrance of the hike with a sign saying “Trilha da Pedra Bonita”. The hike itself is easy to go and takes about 20-30 min from the entrance up to the top.
Right from the start of the hike, the track starts going up, and will keep doing so until you reach the top. It’s fairly steep but it shouldn’t be a problem to bring kids. The track is mostly sheltered by trees and it’s not uncommon to see some animal wildlife here. Most likely you’ll see different species of birds, colorful butterflies and if you are lucky you might even spot some monkeys.
The name Pedra Bonita was given by local farmers centuries ago, who used to own the upper areas of Tijuca Forest. The word Bonita, which means beautiful in English, was given for the beautiful view you get from the top, and not for the shape of the mountain as many people thought.
When you reach the top of Pedra Bonita, try to spend some time and bring some food to have a picnic while you are watching people jumping of the rock. Enjoy the view of the beach of São Conrado where you can see the hang-gliders landing, the famous Tijuca forest, Rocinha, Barra da Tijuca and other big peaks like Pico da Tijuca, Bico do Papagaio, Christ the Redeemer, Pão de Açucar, Dois Irmãos Hike, the famous face of Pedra da Gávea – they’re all just in front of you!
After or before hiking up to Pedra Bonita it’s recommended to stop by the hang-gliding ramp near the parking lot to watch people take off with their gliders and delta wings. There is also a basic restroom and a small bar here if you need some refill.