Florianopolis, Santa Catarina Information
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Florianopolis, the Capital of Santa Catarina in Brazil
Florianópolis is the capital city of the Brazilian southern state of Santa Catarina. It is located on a subtropical island featuring over 50 beaches, green seas, historical places, hills and breathtaking views. A place with out-of-the-ordinary beauty, the island is increasingly sought after as one of the best locations for safe investment in real estate in Brazil. Connected to the mainland by two bridges, with its international airport just 25 minutes from the town centre and the international coach terminal located right in town, Florianópolis is the capital city with best quality of life in the country, a safe, relaxed place with the highest real estate appreciation rate in the region (proven 20-25% per year) and probably in the whole country.
Florianópolis (nicknamed Floripa) is the capital city of the state of Santa Catarina in southern Brazil. Florianópolis is located at coordinates 27o34'18"S 48o37'32"W / -27.5717, -48.6256 (Florianópolis). Formed by the Ilha de Santa Catarina (Island of Santa Catarina), a continental part and a number of smaller islands, it has a population of approx. 450,000 and a metropolitan area with an estimated population of 821,552.
The economy of Florianópolis is heavily based on tourism and services. The island has 42+ clean beaches and is a centre of surfing activity. According to Veja magazine, a renowned Brazilian current affairs publication, Florianopolis is "the best place to live in Brazil." As a result of this publicity, Florianopolis is growing as a second home destination for many Paulistas, Argentines, US citizens and Europeans.
Most of the population lives on the island's northern half. The southern half is more isolated and less developed. Many commercial fishermen populate the island. Although originally colonised by the Portuguese (from the Azores), the city has a strong German and Italian influence, like the rest of the state. The Azorean spirit, inherited from the immigrants who settled in the region 250 years ago, has imprinted the island with its unique personality.
Fishing boats, lacemakers, the folklore, the cuisine and the colonial architecture attract tourism and resources that compensate for the lack of industrial activity. Villages immersed in tradition and history, such as Santo Antônio de Lisboa and Ribeirão da Ilha resist the advances of modernity.
Getting in and out of Florianópolis
The BR-101 motorway, which runs from São José do Norte in the state of Rio Grande do Sul to Touros in Rio Grande do Norte, links Florianópolis to the rest of the country. The BR-101 is also the connection to other roads leading to the rest of the country and the Americas.
Flights to and from many parts of Brazil and the world arrive at and take off from the Hercílio Luz International Airport.
Buses to and from other regions in Brazil and Latin America operate at the Rita Maria Coach Station.
Florianópolis has humid subtropical climate. The seasons of the year are distinct, with well-defined summersand winters and characteristic weather in autumn and spring. Frost is not frequent, but may occasionally occur inland in winter. Due to the proximity of the sea, the relative air humidity may be high at certain times of year.
Climate in Florianopolis
Average maximum temperatures in the hottest month vary from 26°C (79°F) to 31°C (88°F) and minimum temperatures may be as low as 7.5°C (45.5°F) to 12°C (54°F). The lowest temperature ever recorded was ?2°C (28.4°F), in 1975.
Precipitation / Rain Fall in Florianopolis
There is significant precipitation which is well distributed throughout the year. There is no dry season, and summer is generally the rainiest season. Increased rainfall occurs from January to March, with an average of 160 millimetres (6.3 in) per month, and from April to December there is somewhat less precipitation, averaging 100 millimetres (3.9 in) per month. The driest months are from June to August.
The main eco-region is the coastal Atlantic Forest, that is, the narrow strip of about 50-100 kilometres (31-62 miles) along the coast which covers about 20 percent of the region. The vegetation in this region has an extremely diverse and unique mix of fauna and flora species.
Carijó Indians belonging to the Tupi-Guarani nation were the first inhabitants of the Florianopolis region which they called Meiembipe or "mountain along the canal".
Around 1514, the Portuguese landed in the Florianópolis region which the Spaniards renamed Santa Catarina Island in 1526. The region served the vessels that went to the River Plate basin to be loaded with goods.
The official settlement of the island began in 1673 when a village began to form, slowly resembling a colony which was named Nossa Senhora do Desterro. The great demographic increase took place between 1747 and 1756 with the arrival of about 6,000 settlers come from the Archipelago of the Azores and the Madeira Islands. In 1738, the Port Captain’s Office of the Island of Santa Catarina was created and the largest seaside defensive group in Southern Brazil started to be built with the fortresses of Santa Cruz do Anhatomirim, São José da Ponta Grossa, Santo Antonio de Ratones and Nossa Senhora da Conceição de Araçatuba (Barra do Sul).
In 1822, still in the monarchic period, Desterro became the Capital of the Province.
Today, Florianópolis outstands for its beauty, peaceful environment and harmony. It is the capital city with better quality of life in Brazil, where modernity joins history and preserved nature.
Beaches in Florianopolis
One of the most famous beaches on the island is Praia Mole, noted for its rolling green hills and rocky formations on either side. Praia Mole usually hosts the WCT Surfing Championships.
Barra da Lagoa is a quaint fishermen's village but the physical characteristics of the beach make it the perfect place to learn how to surf. It is a cove on the Eastern part of the island that stretches into Moçambique beach for 15 kilometres (9.3 mi). It is a natural setting and there are no huge hotels upon the beach. It is also the Southern seat of Projeto TAMAR (Save the Marine Turtles Project). The canal at Barra da Lagoa connects the Lagoa da Conceição to the open sea. It is not uncommon to see fisherman during the night tossing their nets in the lagoon to catch shrimp they sell to the fresh fish restaurants in this community.
Ingleses Beach (Praia dos Ingleses)
Even though it is a brach preferred by tourists, Ingleses still keeps to the traditions of the Azorean colonisers. In summer, it is one of the top beach destinations of Argentine tourists, second only to Canasvieiras. In winter, mullet fishing, religious celebrations and regional festivities are beautiful demonstrations of the local culture. The dunes between Ingleses Beach and Santinho Beach are natural attractions not to be missed. The practice of sandboarding, trekking and horseback riding on the dunes are quite common activities there.
Armação Beach (Praia da Armação)
Sant'Anna Church, built by the Armação fishing company, is part of this beach's history. It was there that, in the past, whale harpooners and crewmen confessed and attended mass before going fishing. Today, the boats leave there for Ilha do Campeche, one of the most visited islands around Florianópolis. It is also in Armação that one finds one of the most important archaeological sites of the State of Santa Catarina.
Campeche Beach (Praia do Campeche) With its 5 kilometres (3.1 miles) of white sand and turbulent waters, Campeche is considered the Jeffrey's Bay of Santa Catarina Island for the quality of its waves. To those who are not interested in surfing, this beach offers other attractions. For instance, the paradisiac beauty of Ilha do Campeche (Campeche Island), located opposite the beach, a footballl game on the Saint-Exupéry aviation field and fishing, are some of the leisure alternatives available. At night, the huge reflector that illuminates part of the sandy strip in front of the bars contributes to the partying that extends deep into the night. The illumination favours both those who enjoy the merrymaking and the fishermen, who drag their nets in from the from.
Joaquina Beach (Praia da Joaquina) won fame as of the 1970s, when surfers from around the world discovered its waves. Many surf competitions are held there. It is one of the beaches that offer the best tourist facilities, receiving a large number of visitors from around Brazil and the world on the warm spring and summer days. The rocky formation located to the left of the beach, the night lighting and the public showers are some of the trademarks of Joaquina. There is a large paid parking lot plus toilets, showers, a tourist coach parking lot, lifeguards, police station, handicraft shops, bars, restaurants and hotels. Sandboarding may be practised here and boards may be rented on site.
Santinho Beach (Praia do Santinho) is mainly sought after by tourists who look for nature, the location's paradisiacal beauty and tranquillity. Surfers are the main visitors there and consider Santinho to be the best beach on the North of Santa Catarina Island. Primitive inscriptions made by hunters and fishermen inhabiting the Island five thousand years ago are a great attraction of this beach. The name Santinho comes from a human figure engraved on an isolated block of rock.
Outdoor sports, including diving, hang gliding, paragliding, and mountain biking as well as surfing, are popular on the island.
Nearby thermal water facilities
Santo Amaro da Imperatriz was the first thermal water facility developed in Brazil. Hotels with thermal bath facilities are located in the district of Caldas da Imperatriz and in the town of Águas Mornas. Immersion baths and hydro-massage available.
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