How to Spend 1 Day in Florianopolis
Santa Catarina Island, often referred to by the name of its capital city Florianopolis, enjoys 350 miles (560 kilometers) of coastline, with a beach for any taste. Even if you only have a day to spend on the “Magic Island,” you’ll still get a taste for what’s on offer. Here are some tips for how to make the most of your day in Florianopolis.
Morning: Historic Downtown
Start your day on the island with a guided tour of the downtown area. Learn more about the island’s early Portuguese settlers as you tour notable landmarks, such as November 15 Square (Praça Novembro XV), Palace Cruz e Souza, and the impressive Hercílio Luz Bridge (Ponte Hercílio Luz) linking Santa Catarina to mainland Brazil. Book your own private English-speaking guide to make sure you don’t miss anything on your must-see list. If time permits, continue your explorations in the historic Lagoa da Conceição neighborhood, known for its scenic lagoon.
Afternoon: Northern Beaches
Visitors come to Floripa, as the city is known, for its spectacular beaches, and those on the northern end of the island are the most accessible (and have the warmest waters, perfect for swimming). Many full-day tours of the island stop at Jurerê, a trendy beach on the northern end of the island where Brazil’s young, rich, and famous have their vacation homes. If you’re feeling active, opt for an afternoon cycling tour through the northern part of the island, with stops at Mozambique, Santinho, and Ingleses beaches along the way.
Night: Lagoa da Conceição
While nightlife is a bit subdued in Florianopolis, one of the best places for dinner and a drink throughout the year is along the shores of Lagoa da Conceição. Sip a cocktail at the picturesque Morro da Lagoa da Conceição lookout before heading into the village for an evening of barhopping and local music. Alternatively, head to one of the beach clubs on the northern end of the island, where DJs spin tunes and visitors rub elbows with well-heeled locals.