Day Trips in FlorianopolisEdit This
Within a few hours' bus ride from the city are small fishing villages, towns and cities that bear the imprint of German settlement, and some wonderful nature reserves. From the main bus station on the mainland, regular coaches leave for the main tourist attractions in the region.
Best of the Beaches
Should you fancy a change of scene from the beaches of Ilha da Santa Catarina, the north coast of Santa Catarina state is dotted with beach resorts that attract hordes of Brazilian tourists during the summer high season of December through to February. Avoid touristy, overcrowded Camboriu in favour of Porto Belo, a pleasant fishing village on a peninsula dotted with quiet beaches. The village's beach itself is worthy of a day's swimming and sunbathing, and there are lots of relaxed beach cafes. Nearby are plenty of smaller stretches of sand, with those around Bombinhas being very popular with divers. Many of the beaches are accessible only by boat, and there are plenty of tour operators in Porto Belo on hand to transport visitors to the best spots.
Nature lovers should make a beeline for the stunning Praia do Rosa - officially ranked as one of the most beautiful bays in the world. As well as being a popular destination for surfers, the bay, which lies around 100 kilometers from Florianopolis, is one of the best places in Brazil to spot whales and dolphins. During the calving season of May to November, whales head close to the bay, and it is possible to take a boat trip out to see the stunning sea creatures. Day trippers may well be tempted to spend the night here, and there are countless small pousadas and guest houses to choose from, as well as a youth hostel. The vast Pousada Vida Sol e Mar features accommodation in cabins set in wonderful grounds, and can organise surf lessons as well as whale and dolphin watching trips.
Sausages and Sauerkraut
Less than 50 kilometers from Florianopolis lies the busy, German settled city of Blumenau, which is home to some attractive Bavarian-style architecture and hosts a riotous Oktoberfest each year. Nearby, the town of Pomerode is populated almost entirely by German speakers, and is a real slice of Germany at the heart of Brazil. Sausages, Sauerkraut and German beers are all on the menu at many of the cafes and bars here.