Created in 1939, this high country park straddling the Serra dos Órgãos (Organ Pipe Range) just north of Rio is best known for its spectacular mountain scenery, superb climbing opportunities, and extensive trail system, including the classic 42km, three-day traverse over the mountains from Petrópolis to Teresópolis. Hiring a guide for this and other local treks is easy (the park service maintains a list of qualified guides), with May through October (the drier months) being the best time to walk.
The national park covers 118 sq km of mountainous terrain between Teresópolis and Petrópolis. The park’s most distinctive features are the strangely shaped peaks of Pedra do Sino (2263m), Pedra do Açu (2230m), Agulha do Diabo (2020m), Nariz do Frade (1919m), Dedo de Deus (1651m), Pedra da Ermitage (1485m) and Dedo de Nossa Senhora (1320m). With so many peaks, it’s no wonder that this is the mountain-climbing, rock-climbing and trekking center of Brazil.
The main entrance to the national park is at the south edge of the town of Teresópolis, off Hwy BR-116 from Rio, about 4km from the center. Other park entrances can be found at Vale do Bonfim, (20km northeast of Petrópolis) and Guapimirim (in the park's southeastern corner, off the Rio–Teresópolis highway).