São Desidério has more than 100 caves for climbing and hiking

São Desidério na Bahia
São Desidério in Bahia

São Desidério is a small town located in the western region of Bahia, 900 km from Salvador, and has been gaining fame among tourists who are passionate about nature and extreme sports.

This is because the city has more than 100 caves perfect for those who enjoy climbing and hiking.

São Desidério has one of the largest and richest hydrographic basins in Brazil and stands out nationally for its great potential in agriculture and tourism.

São Desidério has one of the largest hydrographic basins in the northeast, rich in biodiversity, with 24 perennial rivers, including the source of the Rio Grande, the main tributary of the left bank of the São Francisco River.

Located in the western region of Bahia, São Desidério is the second largest municipality in territorial extension of the State, with 14.8 thousand km2 and houses a population of 25. 158 inhabitants.

The attractions do not stop there, since the place still has caves with rock inscriptions dating from before the discovery of Brazil and 7 archaeological sites, 3 of which are indigenous cemeteries with artefacts such as funerary urns and hunting and fishing tools of the Indians who lived there.

See the map Caminhos do Oeste

Studies reveal that the western region in prehistoric times was inhabited by indigenous tribes.

The discovery of archaeological sites, funerary urns and cave paintings – which can still be found today in caves in São Desidério – attests to evidence of human life in the cave era.

São Desidério Tourist Sites

The lagoons and caves enchant visitors in São Desidério

1. Blue Lagoon Municipal Park

Those who like to contemplate nature will fall in love with the Lagoa Azul Municipal Park, an area with 19 hectares of vegetation, many rocky walls and the spectacular Lagoa Azul, with clear, calm water and 40 metres deep. Important: entry to the Blue Lagoon is not permitted.

The park is full of viewpoints!

To see the Blue Lagoon, you have access to 3 viewpoints, as well as a panoramic view of this spectacle of nature. Right after the main Lagoon viewpoint, the park offers a novelty for tourists. It is now possible to pass inside a small cave and continue your walk along the banks of the Lagoon.

The route is approximately 2 km long and is all signposted with signs that help tourists to reach the right points, without leaving the trail. In addition to the viewpoints, it is also possible to see the Natural Aquarium, different canyons and the Gruta do Catão, an enchanting landscape.

Inside the cave, with more than 100 metres of extension and incredible walls, you will be amazed by the magnitude and perfection of nature.

1.1 Blue Lagoon in São Desidério

Lagoa Azul em São Desidério 
Lagoa Azul in São Desidério

Formed by an underground river, the Blue Lagoon is in an environmental protection area of the Blue Lagoon Municipal Park.

It is one of the most beautiful tourist spots in São Desidério. Surrounded by rocky walls, the majestically calm water can reach a depth of around 40 metres. The silence and unspoilt nature make the setting unique, of indescribable beauty and an invitation to contemplation.

Access to the site requires the accompaniment of a tour guide.

1.2 Catão Cave

Gruta do Catão em São Desidério
Gruta do Catão in São Desidério

On a trail of approximately 3 km within the Lagoa Azul Municipal Park, you reach two rocky columns over 10 metres high that form the Portal of the Catão Cave.

Made of limestone, the scaly stalactites form a totally different scenario from what is usually seen in other caves. The resurgence of an underground river inside the cave is a spectacle in itself.

Access to the site requires a tour guide.

2. Buraco do Inferno Cave

Gruta do Buraco do Inferno em São Desidério
Gruta do Buraco do Inferno em São Desidério

The name Gruta do Burraco do Inferno is proportional to the size of the cave, although it is not fair to define as “hell” the beauty and grandeur of the place.

A large doline measuring approximately 140 x 80 metres, with vertical walls around almost the entire perimeter.

Burraco do Inferno em São Desidério BA
Burraco do Inferno in São Desidério BA

In its interior, with more than 4 km and rich in stalactites and stalagmites, is the largest underground lake in Brazil, the Lago do Cruzeiro, with dimensions of 260 metres that reaches more than 12 thousand m² of surface and an average width of 60 metres.

Exotic figures sprout from the darkness leading to delirium those who manage to overcome fear and immerse themselves in this dazzling scenery, however, frightening for its grandeur.

Located on BR 135 at the Lagoa do Cemitério farm of the owner Paulo Jamys, access to the site requires the accompaniment of a tour guide.

3. Sumidouro in São Desidério 

Sumidouro em São Desidério
Sumidouro in São Desidério

A mysterious phenomenon that challenges the most tenacious scholars and observers.

The river rises in a crevice, forming a well and then a rapids that ends in a greenish lake. In five-minute intervals, the water rises and falls at great speed, making a drop of 50 centimetres.

The explanation for this phenomenon, rare and unique in Brazil, is a natural siphon that exists inside the rock. The sound of the water in the rapids increases and decreases, resembling a true symphony of waters.

Located on BR 135 at Fazenda João do Baio, access to the site requires a tour guide.

4. Caves of the Shining Stones – Grutas das Pedras Brilhantes

Habitat preserved over time, the Gruta das Pedras Brilhantes, located in Sítio do Rio Grande, records inside, rock incisions engraved on several stones that confirm evidence of the passage of ancestral peoples in São Desidério.

The indigenous culture is impregnated throughout the length of this immense open book, satiating the desire of those who seek to obtain knowledge about the history of our people. Access to the site requires the accompaniment of a tour guide.

5. Paredão do Deus Me Livre

Paredão do Deus Me Livre
Paredão do Deus Me Livre

The Paredão do Deus Me Livre is located in the district of Sitio do Rio Grande, 15 km from the municipality.

With a height of more than 40 metres and with a river of fresh and refreshing waters just below, it is an invitation to practice extreme sports such as abseiling and zip-lining, common especially during the period of one of the biggest June festivals in the West region, São do Sítio Grande, in which the radical wedding is held.

6. Sítio Grande

Sítio Grande
Sítio Grande

One of the most visited tourist spots in São Desidério is Sítio Grande, a district located 15 km from the headquarters.

The Rio Grande gives its name to the place that receives tourists from the region and other states, especially during the São João season. The waters of the river, combined with the rocky walls that frame the place are an invitation to energising baths and adventure sports.

Tourist potential of São Desidério 

  • 146 caves catalogued among them the Buraco do Inferno (Hell Hole) with 4 km long and a depression of approximately 60 metres and 300 in diameter,
  • Nine archaeological sites;
  • Hundreds of inscriptions and cave paintings;
  • Brazil’s largest underground lake, Lago do Cruzeiro
  • One of the largest hydrographic basins in the northeast rich in biodiversity;
  • 24 perennial rivers among them the Rio das Fêmeas
  • Rocky walls up to 40 metres high, suitable for abseiling and zip-lining
  • Ecological trails;
  • Waterfalls and lakes;
  • Spring of the Rio Grande one of the main tributaries of the São Francisco on its left bank;
  • Parque Municipal da Lagoa Azul with several natural attractions
  • Natural phenomena, such as what can be observed in the sinkhole, where a kind of natural pool is formed in which the water rises and falls in a rhythm marked by nature itself, called a siphon.

1. Archaeological sites

Of the archaeological sites discovered in the municipality, three have been named and the others are identified by GPS points.

Artefacts such as ceramic pieces, hunting tools, funerary urns, bones and cave paintings have been found at these sites. These materials are dated to two thousand years old.  The best known sites are:

  • Lapa dos Tapuias in the district of Sítio do Rio Grande
  • Morro dos Tapuias located in Fazenda João do Dazinho
  • Morro do Sol in Beleza Farm.

2. Rivers

The municipality is bathed by 24 rivers. According to studies carried out by the Department of Environment and Tourism, these rivers have water throughout the year, which characterises them as perennial rivers.

o Rio São Desidério
o Rio Grande
o Rio das Fêmeas
o Rio Roda Velha
o Rio Galheirão
o Rio Pratinha
o Rio Pau do Óleo
o Rio Veredinha
o Rio Veredão
o Rio Ribeirão dos Bois
o Rio Cacheado
o Rio Guará
o Rio dos Porcos
o Rio Gado Bravo
o Rio Riacho do Mato
o Rio Estiva
o Rio João Rodrigues
o Rio Triste e Feio
o Rio Mosquito
o Rio Fervedouro
o Rio Riacho Galho Grande
o Rio Porto Alegre
o Rio Ribeirão Pindaíba
o Rio Cabeceira Grande

Bahia.ws is the largest tourism and travel guide for Bahia and Salvador.

Tourism and Travel Guide of São Desidério

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