Florianopolis Tourist Attractions
FlorianópolisSituation and CharacteristicsFlorianópolis, capital of Santa Catarina state, lies on the Ilha de Santa Catarina and is linked with the mainland by an 821m/898yd long suspension bridge, the Ponte Hercílio Luz (1906; now out of use) and the 905m/990yd long Colombo Sales Bridge (1975). In the summer thousands of visitors flock to Florianópolis, mainly from Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.
Although Florianópolis is now a modern city with an excellent infrastructure, it continues to fascinate visitors with its island beaches, over forty in number, and little fishing villages. The houses with their lean-to roofs and blue and white paint reveal the influence of the Azores.Bus stationTerminal Rita Maria, Avenida Paulo FontesAirportAeroporto Hercílio LuzHistoryThe original nucleus of the town, the village of Nossa Senhora de Desterro, was founded in 1673 by Francisco Dias Velho, a bandeirante from São Paulo. In 1726 it was granted the status of a vila. It was then the most strongly fortified settlement on the whole of the east coast, essential for protecting the rear of the Portuguese in the Gaúcho country and the La Plata area. In 1738 it became the seat of government for the province of Santa Catarina. From 1748 on settlers from the Azores who had landed in southern Brazil established themselves here, and as a result the town preserved something of a Portuguese air.
Museum of Anthropology
Museum of AnthropologyThe Museum of Anthropology, on the University campus, displays finds from shell-mounds (sambaquis) - accumulations of shells, remains of cooking utensils and skeletons left by the native Indians on the Atlantic coast and dating from long before the arrival of Europeans - together with domestic equipment and tools of the original Azorean settlers.
CathedralOn Praça 15 de Novembro (near Palácio Cruz e Sousa), in the city center, is the Cathedral, which dates from 1750. It contains a wood sculpture of the Flight into Egypt by the 19th century Tirolean sculptor Ferdinand Demetz.
Festa da Tainha
Festa da TainhaFrom July 25th to 28th the Festa da Tainha, a festival of Azorean origin, is celebrated in Barra da Lagoa. The main dish during the festival is the tainha (grey mullet), which is caught during the cold months of the year in large trawl nets. The great attraction of the festival lies in the music and dancing from different parts of Portugal - particularly, of course, from the Azores.
The best known fort is Fort Santana (1750), at the foot of the Hercílio Luz Bridge, which now houses the Museum of Weapons of the Military Police. Others are Nossa Senhora da Conceição; Santo Antonio dos Ratos (1641), on the island of Ratão Grande (in course of restoration since the late eighties); and Santa Cruz do Anhatomirim (1744), on a small island.
Meireles BirthplaceIn Rua Victor Meireles, near Praça 15 de Novembro, is the birthplace of Victor Meireles, which contains documents, drawings and studies by this local artist. There are some of his pictures in the church of São Francisco da Ordem Terceira (1803), which also has several Baroque altars.
Museum of the Sambaqui People
Museum of theSambaqui PeopleThe Museum of the Sambaqui People, in the Colégio Catarinense, displays skeletons, urns and utensils of the indigenous inhabitants.
Ribeirão da Ilha Museum
Ribeirão da Ilha MuseumThe Ribeirão da Ilha Museum illustrates the life of the Azorean settlers with everyday objects and utensils.
Map of Florianopolis Attractions