Palmas Tocantins

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Valley of Taquaruzinho

When you drive southwards from Palmas, you cross the Taquaruçu Grande river that takes its rise in the hills of the Serra do Lajeado, 40km east of Palmas and ends in the Tocantins. 
The Taquaruzinho river is an affluent on the south side. In the green valley of this river you find the picturesque village Taquaruçu. 
From Palmas it takes a half hour to arrive in the village and the road is good. Take the TO-050 Palmas-Taquaralto (14Km) and then the TO- 030 Taquaralto-Taquaruçu (18Km). 

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Taquaruçu is derived from the word ´taquara´ and means big bamboo in the original Indian language. It is written as Taquarussu as well as Taquaruçu. With Taquaralto and Canela it is one of the three districts that formed the municipality of Palmas in 1990. 

The valley has a very pleasant climate and is green and full of palm trees like Buriti, Açaí and Babaçu. It is a typical ´cerrado´vegetation with ´mata´ near the rivers. Various medicinal plants are found as well as protected woods. The fauna is diverse: araras, tucanos, papagaios, pica-paus, beija-flores, juritis, periquitos, onças, veados mateiros, caititus, pacas, cutias, tatus and porcões..


In the first half of the 19th century Fazenda Palmeira settled in the beginning of the valley, halfway between Taquaralto and Taquaruçu. Before that, groups of Indians were living here.
In 1940 the owner, Senhor Maia, agreed that immigrants from the northeast settled in the valley. At a place called Santa Fé some houses were build of adobe and straw of the piaçava palm. This is the current Taquaruçu.
The first people to settle in the valley were mainly cattle drivers from Maranhão and Piauí in the years 1940-1960. In the early sixties the people decided to start a village with commercial houses. In 1976 it became a district, in 1980 a municipality.
The people that settle here today are ecologists, artists and pensioners. The current population is 3.000.

Touristic highlights

1. In the valley, before you arrive in the village, are natural pools with rapids. Parking areas aside the road indicate the locations.
2. The village itself is picturesque. The village has been renovated by the Palmas authorities. The houses in the center are painted and the square Praça Joaquim Maracaípe is renovated. You can shop for artesanato, relax and have an ice-cream or beer on the square, and have lunch in one of the simple restaurants. The Associação dos Artesãos de Taquaruçu - ASAT, organizes events regularly, called Feira Artesanal da Serra. You can enjoy local food like maria isabel, arroz com pequi, beiju de cocô, mangulão, paçoca, mané pelado, as well as licors of murici, jenipapo e caju and doces de frutas típicas. 
3. Climb the hill for a panoramic view. At 2km south from Taquaruçu you find the altar shaped Pedra de Pedro Paulo. Pedro was a priest who frequently climbed the hill to play saxophone and sing.
4. From the altar you can take a track of 20 minutes to a waterfall of 40meters high: Cachoeira do Roncador. The region has 80 waterfalls which are more or less accessible. With a guide you can find 3 big stones with ancient inscriptions.
5. Going in the direction of Santa Tereza, at 3,5km, you will see road signs indicating Fazenda Encantada and Fazenda Ecologica.
Fazenda Encantada, is an expensive eco-hotel at a height of 660 meters, at the Taquarussu Grande. From here you can walk to 5 waterfalls and various cascades (pay entrance).
Fazenda Ecologica is also a eco-hotel with guided trips and the possibility to experience rappel. Fazenda Ecologica gives visitors a rainforest feeling that is a surprise in savanna-like Tocantins state.
It is temporarely closed.