There are a number of attractions within easy reach of Florianópolis, including all of Ilha de Santa Catarina.
Guarda do Embaú
Guarda do EmbaúOn the mainland 60km/37mi south of Florianópolis is Guarda do Embaú, claimed to be one of the world's most beautiful beaches and a surfers' paradise. Close to the beach are the hills of the Serra do Tabuleiro State Park.
Ilha de Santa Catarina
Ilha de Santa Catarina is connected to the mainland by a bridge at Florianópolis. The island has a number of natural attractions with an inland lagoon and miles of beaches on the east coast. Small towns are scattered throughout the island and plenty of tourist accommodation is available.
Beaches North of FlorianópolisWithin easy reach of the town are the beaches of Cacupé, Santo Antìnio de Lisboa, Sambaqui and Santinho, all of which attract large numbers of people. The best known beaches, however, are the Praia de Jurerà opposite the Ilha do Francàs, with the ruins of Fort São José da Ponta Grassa (1741), the beaches of Canasvieiras, Lagoinha and Brava, and the busy Praia dos Ingleses ("Englishmen's Beach"). On this stretch of coast are two of the oldest churches on the island: São João Batista (1740), in the district of Rio Vermelho, and São Francisco de Paula (1750), on the beach of Canasvieiras, which extends round a long and beautiful bay.
Barra da Lagoa
Barra da LagoaThe blue-painted houses of Barra da Lagoa, a village near the Lagoa da Conceição on the east side of the island, also seem to have been transferred here from the Azores. The church of Nossa Senhora da Conceição dates from 1730. The villagers live from fishing and the delicate pillow lace made by the women, and also from tourism. The Lagoa da Conceição nature reserve is one of the most visited places on the island.
Beaches East of FlorianópolisTo the east of Florianópolis are some of the best known and most popular beaches on the island, including the Praia de Joaquina and Praia de Moçambique, two long beaches looking out on to the open sea, and the beaches of Barra da Lagoa and Lagoa da Conceição.
Ribeirao da Ilha
Ribeirão da IlhaRibeirão da Ilha, in the southern half of the island, is the oldest settlement within the city area. Its architecture is reminiscent of the Azores. The local people live mainly by fishing and the making of pillow lace. The church of Nossa Senhora da Lapa dates from 1763.
Jesuit monasteryThe Jesuit house on the summit of the Morro das Pedras ("Hill of Stones") has magnificent views of the Lagoa do Peri nature reserve, 36km/22mi from Florianópolis, and the beaches of Morro das Pedras (not suitable for bathing) and Armação, both on the east side of the island.
Beaches of the Continente Sul
Beaches of the Continente SulOn Avenida 7 de Julho are the small and not particularly clean beaches of Coqueiros, Itaguaçu, etc., with numerous restaurants and night spots.
Cidade das Abelhas
Cidade das Abelhas12km/7.5mi north of the town on the road to Canasvieiras is the Institute of Apiculture, known as the Cidade das Abelhas ("City of the Bees"), where visitors can buy honey and see details of the life of the beekeepers.
Santo Antonio de Lisboa
Santo Antìnio de LisboaThe village of Santo Antìnio de Lisboa, in the north of the island, gives an excellent impression of Azorean architecture with the church of Nossa Senhora da Necessidade (1750) and the Casa Aáoriana (cultural center).
São MiguelThe bathing resort of São Miguel, on the mainland 24km/15mi north-west of Florianópolis, is reached on BR 101. In addition to its beaches it has a ruined aqueduct and a church dating from the 18th century. Also of interest is the Casa dos Aáores, a historical museum housed in an 18th century building.
Map of Florianopolis Attractions