Located on the route linking Florianópolis and Curitiba, Garuva is a small town framed by mountains in the Brazilian state of Santa Catarina. It serves as a gateway to the waterfall trails of Monte Crista and is on the doorstep of family-friendly water parks and cultural museums.
Things to do in Garuva
Rising west of Garuva is Monte Crista, a forested mountain that provides a popular setting for hiking. Follow the challenging trail that leads to a series of waterfalls and rocky pools where you can refresh with a swim or enjoy a stroll along the banks of the Rio Baroza.
Travelling with kids? Don’t miss a visit to the Aquatic Park Corner Davet, a family-friendly complex with a huge swimming pool and a lazy river. You can get your thrills on one of the waterslides before grabbing drinks and snacks from the kiosk and relaxing on the shaded picnic lawn. Not far away is the Aquatic Park Water Valley, another ideal spot to refresh in the summer months.
For a cultural fix, spend a day exploring the city of Joinville, which is home to the National Museum of Immigration and Colonization. Get up close to antique wagons and everyday objects belonging to Brazil’s European settlers before admiring the work of regional painters and sculptors at the Joinville Art museum. On the outskirts of Joinville is the picturesque Estrada Bonita, a rural road that winds between orchards and European-style country houses.
Getting around Garuva
Garuva is a 30-minute drive from Joinville and 1.5 hours from Curitiba. Afonso Pena International Airport is just over an hour away and has flights to destinations across Brazil. Buses are the main means of getting to Garuva while the town is compact enough to explore on foot.