What to do in Praia Grande, Santa Catarina: City of the canyons!

Located on the border between Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul and at the foot of the gigantic canyons of the Aparados da Serra and Serra Geral national parks, the city is known as the city of Canyons.

hanks to its privileged location Praia Grande has been increasingly standing out as an ecotourism hub, with great potential for trails and activities in direct contact with preserved nature and the grandeur of the canyons. The destination has also become famous for the balloon rides that take place daily with several balloons in the air.

This is the unmissable destination for ecotourism lovers!

What to do in Praia Grande

Praia Grande brings together waterfalls, natural pools, rivers, and trails through the interior of the rock formations, in addition, the largest canyons in Brazil offer an unforgettable view. The city also offers plenty for visitors with activities such as: rappeling, canyoning, 4x4 trails, zipline, horseback riding, and of course we can not forget about the ballon rides.

Even for those who are not so adventurous, it is worth staying in an inn with views of beautiful landscapes. It has something for all tastes, both in the city and in the countryside, from luxury inns to camping and hostels, with incredible views.

Here i am going to list the best activities to do in Praia Grande. Get ready for a trip full of adventure and get to know the best of nature!

Ballon Flight

One of the most popular tours in Praia Grande, the balloon flight over the canyons is a magical experience. It’s about 45 minutes with an unparalleled look! You will be able to see the canyons from a totally different angle, the entire coastal plain and the city of Praia Grande.

They take place every day during sunrise, and offer a unique view of the canyons, which are even more beautiful with the colors of the sky at dawn.

If you want to invest in an unforgettable experience during your trip to Praia Grande SC, this tour cannot be left out of the itinerary.

Canyoneering and Rappelling

Do you like adventure and strong emotions? If your answer is yes you should rappeling and canyoneering. Totally connected with nature, the two adventure sports consist of going down canyons, waterfalls and river beds. The most famous places are the Magia das Águas waterfall with 40m high, and the Kaiang Ravinehere where you will have the opportunity to descend 10 waterfalls that are on the edge of the canyons, with heights between 5m and 100m.

The companies offer packages with all the necessary safety equipaments, transfers, instructor and insurance. It is worth mentioning that only professionals can go down the biggest canyons of Praia Grande SC. For beginners, the Magia das Águas route is great for canyoneering and rappelling.


There are several possible trails in Praia Grande, most of which depend on the accompaniment of a guide. Some are more popular and sought after, such as the Rio do Boi and Malacara trails, and others are less known.

Rio do Boi Trail

This is not your typical leisurely walk. In fact, the path leads you through some of nature’s most stunning scenery inside Itaimbezinho Canyon and requires an incredible amount of fitness to complete successfully!

With 16km round trip, and with an approximate duration of 7 hours, it is considered a high degree of difficulty. Most of the walk is done on the rocks and there is a need to cross the river several times and in some places the water reaches knee height.

Malacara Canyon Trail

The Malacara Canyon trail has a similar route to the Rio do Boi trail, following the river bed, also with some crossings, but it is much shorter and the crossings are quieter.

The walk starts in Vila Rosa, near the entrance of the Pedra Afiada and has as its final destination two natural pools with small waterfalls inside the canyon, where it is possible to bathe in the river.

Malacara Natural Swimming Pools Trail

For those who do not have a full day available, this is the best trail option, and it becomes a must-see for audiences who are not used to long walks. With 5km the difficulty level of this hike is medium and lasts from 2.5 hours to 3 hours (round trip).

Trail of Morro do Campestre

The Morro do Campestre Trail has as its main attraction an open field located on top of a hill. This hill is located between three canyons: Crowned Indians, Molha Coco and Malacara.

It offers spectacular 360 degree views of the canyons as well as the city. In addition to the trail up the hill, there is another option, which is the complete circuit, which in addition to Morro Campestre includes the Rosinha waterfall.

The walk starts and ends in Vila Rosa and the normal trail time is 3 hours and 4 hours on the complete circuit.

Borges Waterfall

The Borges waterfall is 70 meters high, located in a beautiful natural area. It is located in a private park of the same name, at the bottom of the Chapada dos Borges Valley, 18 km from the center of Praia Grande.

To visit the park, you need to buy a visitation ticket that entitles you to spend the day there and includes two trails to the waterfall. One trail will take you under the waterfall and takes approximately 50 minutes and the other takes you to the top of the waterfalls and takes arround 1h10.

The place has a restaurant with Wi-fi, restrooms and a beautiful natural pool. It opens from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and visits are only possible by appointment at least 24 hours in advance.

Magia das Águas Waterfall

Magia das Águas is 40m high, located in a beautiful area of ​​native forest, at the beginning of the Faxinal mountain range. The trail to the waterfall is 600m long, self-guided and well signposted. It is located on the private property of the Itambé inn, 3 km from the center, where the parking area is located.

Visitation takes place upon payment of a fee at the property.

This waterfall is a place for rappelling and is part of the Magia das Águas canyoning route.

Ventura Waterfall

The Ventura waterfall is 35 m high, and is on the private property of the Ventura family. It is very popular for rappelling on its rocky walls. The waterfall is in the community of Rio do Boi, 8 km from the center of Praia Grande SC. The trail is self-guided, is 1.5 km long (2 hours round trip) and passes through a path surrounded by Atlantic forest and banana plantations.

Visitors are welcome to visit the property upon payment of a fee.

Cabritos Hill

Morro dos Cabritos is located in the middle of Serra do Faxinal, with access by a short 300-meter trail. It is a plateau approximately 300 meters high, high above the valley. From there we have 360° views of Vale do Rio do Boi, Vale da Pedra Branca, and part of the coastal plain in the extreme south of Santa Catarina.

If the weather is favorable, take the opportunity to watch the sunset at Morro dos Cabritos.

Waterfalls and Canyon Índios Coroados

The waterfall of the Índios Coroados canyon has a total height of approximately 100 m. It starts as a single drop in its first section, with 10 m. Then it is divided into two identical falls located side by side, with another 90 m in height.

The canyon’s main viewpoint offers a frontal view of the waterfall, at a distance of 630 m, through a 600 m trail. The canyon is 1.5km long and approximately 700m high.

There is also the option of reaching above the waterfall, with side views via a 2 km trail. For the second trail, the accompaniment of a guide is essential.

We saw it from the frontal view and we loved.

Itambezinho Canyon

This is the most famous canyon in the region, after all it is one of the largest in Brazil. It is located within the Aparados da Serra National Park and certainly impresses with its rocky walls that seem to have been carved by hand.

The walls extend for 5.8km and have an average height of 720m. The vegetation on the slope of the canyon seems to frame the landscape and at the bottom runs the so-called Rio do Boi, which completes the scenery perfectly.

To get to know Itaimbezinho from above you must go through the city of Cambará do Sul, which is 38 km from Praia Grande. Access is via RS-427 and the journey takes about 1h20.

Malacara Canyon

The Malacara canyon is the most apparent from the city of Praia Grande SC. It is possible to see its walls from practically anywhere in the city. It is about 3.5km long and the height of its walls ranges from 780m to an incredible 1000m in altitude!

Access is from the underside, through the Malacara trail, if you decide to take on this adventure, remember to be wearing comfortable shoes and know that at certain times of the year the trail is submerged so you spend the whole way in the water.

Churriado Canyon

Located just after Malacara canyon, in the Serra Geral National Park in Cambará do Sul, Churriado has difficult access and is not visited by tourists, only by experienced canyoners and adventurers.

Fortaleza Canyon

It is the largest canyon in the Serra Geral National Park, located between the states of Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul, in the city of Cambará do Sul, with length of 7.5 km and with rocks up to 900 meters high, which look like great medieval walls – hence the name.

It is possible to do two trekkings that give access to the canyon, namely: the Tigre Preto Waterfall Trail and the Pedra do Segredo. Also the Mirante Trail gives a panoramic view of more than 1000m altitude. Prepare your breath as the view is surprisingly beautiful!

Parque dos Canyons



Max Mustermann

Max Mustermann ist Experte für Online-Marketing und hat bereits zahlreiche Projekte aufgebaut in denen er sein Wissen unter Beweis gestellt hat. In diesem Blog erfährst du mehr über seine Expertise.

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