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Cubatão is an industrial city once known as the "most polluted city in the world", in the Santos region of São Paulo state. It is considered a world symbol of environmental recovery by the United Nations. The Serra do Mar State Park is a great attraction for ecotourists, such as birdwatchers, mountain bikers and hikers. The Cubatão waterfalls are regionally recognized for their beauty and large size.



Cubatão has always played a prominent role in the life of Baixada Santista, the State of São Paulo and Brazil. Located at the foot of the Serra do Mar, from where Jesuits, merchants, drovers and kingdom authorities took their breath to reach the Plateau, it essentially became a place of passage. First along the water path, then through the Perequê River Valley, the so-called "Caminho do Padre" and finally along the "Calçada do Lorena". The Porto Geral de Cubatão had its origins in the first half of the 18th century. On the other hand, a village was developed, for a long time known by that name. In 1833, this village was elevated to the category of municipality, in 1841, annexed to the Municipality of Santos and in 1949 the political-administrative emancipation took place.

Large buildings such as Via Anchieta, and later the lanes of Rodovia dos Imigrantes, Refinaria Presidente Bernardes, Companhia Siderúrgica Paulista (formerly COSIPA, today USIMINAS), in addition to Companhia Santista de Papel and Usina Light, made Cubatão a major center for vehicle traffic. It is still considered one of the largest petrochemical complexes in Latin America.

With a large industrial park, Cubatão faced the constant threat of pollution in the past. In the 1980s, it was considered by the UN as the most polluted city in the world. However, with the cooperation of industries, community and government, the city managed to control 98% of the level of pollutants in the air. For this reason, in 1992 it received the title of "Symbol City of Environmental Recovery" from the UN.

Get in


By plane


The nearest airport in operation is Congonhas Airport, in São Paulo, which is about 60 km from the center of Cubatão.

By ship


The closest passenger terminal is at the port of Santos.

By car


Cubatão is 58 km from São Paulo.

There are two options for going down the mountain by car from São Paulo: Rodovia Anchieta (also used by buses and trucks, including bi-trains) and Rodovia dos Imigrantes (exclusive for passenger vehicles, on the descent). They are considered the best roads in Latin America, with an excellent level of conservation and also the most expensive tolls in the country (R$ 22.00), paid only for the descent (bikes do not pay).

By bus


From São Paulo, bus trips start at the Jabaquara Bus Terminal, a journey of approximately 45 minutes to the Cubatão Bus Terminal. The departures are one hour apart.

  • Breda, 0800 779 4990 or +55 13 3453 1830

Get around


The city's neighborhoods are separated from each other, with the entire city connected by highways. The main thoroughfares in the neighborhood are:

  • SP-150 (Anchieta Highway) Provides access to the Henry Borden Hydroelectric Power Plant, to downtown Cubatão, to Cotia-Pará Park, to Jardim Casqueiro (and to Marina do Mar Pequeno) and connects the city to Santos
  • SP-160 (Rodovia dos Imigrantes) Connects the city to São Vicente and Praia Grande
  • SP-055 (Rodovia Pe. Manoel da Nóbrega, or Rodovia Pedro Taques) Gives access to the Industrial Pole (COSIPA, Carbocloro), to the Perequê Ecological Park, to the city center and to the Pilões and Vale Verde neighborhoods (which have beautiful open springs for visitation). Connects the city to Praia Grande and Bertioga.

By bus


The bus system is based on a radial route, with buses traveling through "Centro-neighborhood-center" lines, in a circular fashion. To get from one neighborhood to another, you must take two buses. However, in such cases, you can ask for an integration ticket, which can be used only once, and always in the same direction of circulation.


  • Cruzeiro Quinhentista. Crossing constructed in the 1500s, with the names of the Jesuit builders engraved in it.
  • City Library, Av. Nove de Abril, 1977, +55 13 3361-6844. The building was built in 1936 and housed the first headquarters of the City Hall and the first public school in the municipality. The facade has an unquestionable architectural beauty and contrasts with the modern buildings on Avenida Nove de Abril.
  • Largo do Sapo, Praça Coronel Joaquim Montenegro. Listed as historical heritage by Condepac (Council for the Defense of Cultural Heritage of Cubatão), it was one of the places where D. Pedro I's entourage stopped in September 1822, days before proclaiming Brazil's independence.
  • Aniline Municipal Park. It's a piece of the Atlantic Forest right in the center of the city. It underwent a major renovation and received a cinema, food court and cable car, thus becoming one of the most important leisure and entertainment complexes in the region.
  • Paço Municipal, Praça dos Emancipadores, +55 13 3362 6363. It houses the Legislative and Executive powers (City Council and City Hall).
  • Our Lady of Lapa Parish Church (Igreja Matriz Nossa Senhora da Lapa), Av. Nove de Abril, 1975.
  • Arts Station (Estação das Artes), Av. Nove de Abril, 1208, +55 13 3361-6937. Former train station in the city, it was deactivated and turned into an artistic centre.

 Industrial tourism 

  • Henry Borden Hydroelectric Power Plant, Av. Bernardo Geisel Filho, s/nº (access is via the road and the so-called “Trail of the Plant” that cuts through the Serra do Mar, leaving from Parque Itutinga-Pilões), +55 11 5613-2100. Visits must be scheduled. It sits at the foot of Serra do Mar, was built in the last century, and is still in operation. The plant takes advantage of the 700-meter difference in level of Planalto Paulista in relation to sea level to generate energy from the waters of the Billings Reservoir. Great tour for student groups. 
  • Carbocloro Factory, Rod. Cônego Domenico Rangoni (SP-055) km 267.7 East lane s/nº, +55 13 3362-8006. Appointment required (estimated tour duration is 2 hr 30 min and minimum age is 15 years old). The visit itinerary includes the industrial process and also part of the 650,000 m² green area, which includes a Private Natural Heritage Reserve (RPPN) and a Conservationist Breeding Area, both granted by the Brazilian Institute of the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (Ibama) free visits. 
  • CEPEMA USP (Environmental Research and Training Center), Canon Domenico Rangoni Highway, km 270, +55 13 3362-9350. M-F 08:00 to 17:00. A place for graduate studies focused on the environment. Created through an agreement between USP, FUSP, CETESB, PETROBRÁS and the Public Ministry.  





Cubatão is a municipality with great tourist potential that gained strength mainly after the implemented environmental recovery actions. The City has a mangrove with biodiversity similar to that of the Pantanal, still little publicized and explored for tourism. In addition, Cubatão is surrounded by a large green belt: parks such as Cotia-Pará, Perequê and Serra do Mar have national projection and are ideal for ecotourism activities, such as bird- watching.

  • Padrão do Lorena (Path of the Sea), Caminho do Mar Road, Km 42 (SP-148) São Bernardo do Campo - SP, +55 13 3372-3307, . Tuesday to Sunday. It is possible to access the path, which is 9.2 km long (18.4 km round trip), both through São Bernardo do Campo - ABC Paulista municipality - and through Cubatão, in Baixada Santista. Appointment required. Located in a state conservation unit, Parque Caminhos do Mar offers an ecocultural tour that takes you on foot along Estrada Velha de Santos (SP - 148) amidst the lush Atlantic Forest. In addition to the ecotourism appeal, the tour is a historical-cultural program. Along its route, various monuments and constructions, some dating from the centenary of the Independence of Brazil, in 1922, reconstitute the importance of this path in the history of the interconnection between the coast and the plateau of São Paulo. M-F R$ 10.00, Sa Su R$ 15.00. Social Day (every Thursday): R$1.00 (small groups or needy institutions)..
  • Pereque Ecological Park, Cônego Domenico Rangoni Highway, km 4, +55 13 3362-6268. Daily 08:00-17:00. ​​40,000 m² with trails, waterfalls and a dazzling 60-meter waterfall. Free..
  • Serra do Mar State Park (Itutinga-Pilões Nucleus), Estrada Elias Zarzur, km 8, s/nº, +55 13 3361-8250, +55 13 3377-9154. Daily.
    • Pilões River Trail: (1,200 m, low difficulty) Used for Environmental Education activities and visits to schools, with ruins of the old village of Itutinga.
    • Passariúva River Trail: (3,000 m, low difficulty) Part of the Trilhas de São Paulo program. With river crossing, proper places for bathing and rest. The end point of the trail is the Passariúva river waterfall, where in addition to the waterfall there is a 5-meter-deep well with clear water.
    • Usina Trail: (18,000 m, medium difficulty) Great cultural wealth as it follows the ruins of the train tracks of the former Santista de Papel Mill, one of the first industries to settle in the Industrial Pole of Cubatão. The end point of the trail is the ruin of the old power plant and the dam built for power generation). Free. For trails, appointment required.
  • Cotia-Pará Ecological Park, Anchieta Highway Km 56.5 (coastal lane), +55 13 3372-2342. Tu-Su 08:00-17:00. It has an area of ​​500,000 m² with a vegetable garden, mini-site, plant nurseries, bird aviaries, leisure areas with kiosks, barbecue grills and two lakes. Free.

Nautical tourism 

Guarás can be seen in Cubatão, on boat trips through the mangroves.

The tourist boats that travel the meanders of the rivers amidst the region's mangroves are an unmissable attraction when visiting Cubatão. Its fauna enchants Brazilian and foreign tourists, many of whom are fond of "bird watching". The scarlet ibis (Endocimus ruber) is the city's symbol bird and its population, which disappeared in the 1980s due to the pollution of its habitat, is now booming.

  • Caraguatá Island Marinas, +55 13 3362-0850. Nauticas offer boats for rent with guides, snack bar, changing rooms, locker rental, nursery for baits. On average, R$50.00 per person.

Activities and events 




Ask for the Passion of ChristBanana Party9 de Abril parade: anniversary of the city, Avenida Nove de Abril is taken over by a large parade. The city, known for being the "Brazilian city of fanfares", lavishes the title on that date, with a parade that lasts for hours and features various fanfares and public organizations.



Paths to Independence play: honoring the historic date of September 1822, the play portrays the crucial moments that culminated in the Proclamation of Independence by D. Pedro I, without forgetting the role of the city as a route to the plateau.



Cubatão Danado de Bom: festival that celebrates the northeastern origins of more than 70% of the city's population, with typical food, music and regional atmosphere.



The city's commercial avenue is Avenida Nove de Abril, which has popular stores, gift and souvenir stores, clothing and home appliance stores, in addition to concentrating most of the city's restaurants and snack bars. Cubatão does not have any large shopping malls.



Cubatão's cuisine is the result of three important components: bananas, the city's main economic activity in the pre-industrial period; seafood, mainly fish and crustaceans from the mangroves in the region and northeastern cuisine, given the strong migration in the mid-20th century. The city's typical dish is the caiçara "Azul Marinho", a kind of moqueca with fish and green banana, served mainly at the Banana Festival. Other typical foods in the region are crab and dried meat.


  • Restaurante Primor, Av. Joaquim Miguel Couto, 600 - Centro (near city hall). M-Sa 10:30-15:00.
  •  Lisbon Restaurant and Bakery Avenida Nove de Abril ​​1753 - Center, +55 13 3361 1410


  • Project 10 Av. Joaquim Miguel Couto, 252, +55 13 3372-1000 
  • Kalabalis Pizzeria Av. Joaquim, Jorge Peralta 70 – Jardim Casqueiro, +55 13 3363 4000 
  • Pizzeria village Av. Joaquim, Jorge Peralta 70 – Jardim Casqueiro, +55 13 3363 4000 
  • Bakery and Restaurant Lisbon  Avenida Nove de Abril ​​1753 - Center, +55 13 3361.1410 

Snack bars

  • Tia Jo's Restaurant Rua Goiás 253 – Vila Paulista, +55 13 3361 7573 
  •  Roast Chicken Ambassador, Pedro de Toledo Street – Vila Paulista, +55 13 3361 6365 
  • Pizzeria and Snack Bar Ponte Nova, Av. Felícia Olivieri Trombino 661 – Jardim Casqueiro, +55 13 3363 2277 
  •  Florida Snacks, Avenida Nove de Abril ​​2125 - Center, +55 13 3361 2905 


  • Vila Nova Steakhouse Avenida Nove de Abril ​​3448 – Vila Nova. 




  • [[dead link] Hotel Lopes, Av. Embaixador Pedro de Toledo n.º 477 - Vila Paulista, +55 13 3372 6204 or +55 13 3372 6206, Full board: breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  • Hotel Rainha do Mar[dead link], Av. Nove de Abril ​​n.º 1821 - Center, +55 13 3361 4422, 60 UH - 150 beds. Breakfast included.
  • Hotel Crisbel[dead link], Av. Nove de Abril n.º 2580 – Centro, +55 13 3361.2575 or +55 13 3372.3950, breakfast included.
  • Hotel do Farol, Av. Joaquim Miguel Couto, 315, Center, +55 13 3361-9617,



Telephone: The area code for Cubatão (and the entire Baixada Santista area) is (13).

Post Office: AC Cubatão, Avenida Nove de Abril, 3488 - Vila Nova, +55 13 3361-4760 or +55 13 3361-9164



Cubatão has a health block, in the center of the city, which houses the Municipal Hospital (Hospital Modelo), the Children's Polyclinic, the Women's Health Center and the Guiomar F. Roebellen Emergency Room.

Go next

Routes through Cubatão
PeruíbeSão Vicente  S  N  SantosUbatuba

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