Are you looking for a hike to escape from the hustle and bustle of Rio de Janeiro and enjoy the countryside? Pedra do Elefante meaning the elephant stone in English, is a beautiful hike that is located in Parque Estadual da Serra da Tiririca, between Itacoatiara and the Itiapuaçu Beach in Niteroi. The hike is considered to be hard because it includes some climbing sections, not because of the distance.
|Duration: 2-3 hours up and downDistance: 1500 m
When to hike: All year, except if it’s too warm. Because it will be to hot for your hands to do the climbing part.
What to bring: Hiking Boots/trainers, comfortable clothing, mosquito repellant, sunscreen, you might want to bring food and drinks for a picnic.
How to get to Pedra do Elefante hike
The best way to get to the starting point of this hike is by car. Use GPS and enter ¨Pousada do Holandes¨ as destination, a small bed and breakfast which is located close to the starting point of the trail. Shortly before you reach the Pousada do Holandes you will see a parking lot on your right hand. You can’t miss it and most likely other cars will be parked there already because it has an excellent view.
For more information see map below:
When you are at the parking lot, you need to go back 20 meters and you will easily see the starting point as it’s indicated by a sign saying “Parque Estadual da Serra da Tiririca“. The sign also gives you information about the Pedra do Elefante hike. The hike itself is easy to walk but there are some climbing sections that’s why the hike is considered to be difficult.
Right from the start of the hike, the trail starts going up a bit and will keep doing so for about 15-20 minutes. The path inside the forest is mostly sheltered by trees and you can really feel that you are inside of the jungle while you are hiking Pedra do Elefante.
After walking through the forest for about 15-20 minutes you will get to a small clearing with a sign saying Trilha Pedra do Elefante, here you will easily see where to follow and after some more minutes of hiking, the path starts going down. The whole path is well marked and indicated by signs so it’s always easy to see where to go.
After walking down for 10-15 minutes, the track will get steep again and you will reach the difficult part of the trail, where you need to climb. So be prepared to start using hands and feets to pull yourself up.
At this part the view is coming up, and on your right hand you get the view of the beach Costão de Itacoatiara. On a clear day you can also see all the way to Rio de Janeiro.
After you have walked / climbed the last part of the trail, you will reach the top of Pedra do Elefante. Now that you have finished the hike, enjoy the marvelous 360 degree view that stretches all the way from Rio de Janeiro, featuring Pedra da Gavea, Dois Irmãos, Corcovado and Pão de Açucar, to the Serra dos Orgãos mountains near Petropolis. And of course you can also see the beaches of Itaipuaçu and Itacoatiara in Niteroi.
You’ll probably be hungry after some hours of hiking on the Pedra do Elefante Trail. A really good choice for food and drinks is a restaurant named Maria da Praia Piratininga. (About 15-20 minutes drive) This lovely restaurant is modern, has excellent service and is located next to the beach. Normally there is live music on weekends.
As you’re already close to Itacoatiara, why not check out the beaches at Itacoatiara and the short hike Costao de Itacoatiara!