Feature Friday | Florianópolis, Brazil - The Island of Magic

Feature Friday is here everyone and it's starting off with a bang! 

We're heading off to the exotic shores of Brazil with the lovely Tendelle off of Travel à la Tendelle.

Reward at the end of the trail of Lagoinha do Leste (Drinks, Snacks, and Parasols)

Reward at the end of the trail of Lagoinha do Leste (Drinks, Snacks, and Parasols)


Florianópolis, Brazil. Brazilians endearingly call it Floripa or Ilha da Magia – the Island of Magic.

Map of Florianopolis, source | florianopolis dot net

Map of Florianopolis, source | florianopolis dot net

Reason for Visit?

The 4 B’s. Best beaches, bewitching scenery, beautiful people, and brilliant nightlife!

Bridge that takes you into Florianopolis the island.jpg

The Essentials

- From Hercilio Luz Airport, the most comfortable way to get to your accommodation would be taxi, and I'd recommend it. It costs around R$50 (approx $18) to go to the center of the island (i.e. Lagoa de Conceição) and would be the easiest and fastest way to get there.

If you're staying in the north it costs around R$100 to get there. It might be worth it because taking the city bus means you'll need to make at least one bus transfer. Also ask if your hotel or hostel has airport transfer options!

- If you arrive to Floripa by bus from another Brazilian city, the long distance bus terminal is within walking distance to the main local bus terminal, so you could catch a bus there. Ask your hotel the best bus line to take and consult the schedules here.

- To get from district to district within Floripa, you could take the city bus. If you're comfortable with it, driving a moped would be the easiest way to explore the island. I've written a blog post about mobility in Florianopolis in more detail

Cycling in the north of the island

Cycling in the north of the island

What must we Do?

Go people-watching at Praia Mole and Praia Galheta. Floripa is an island-city with dozens of beaches. Each beach has its own personality and there is a beach for everyone’s taste. Check out my in-depth guide to beaches in Florianópolis to find yours.

Go sandboarding at the Dunas da Joaquina. The Dunas da Joaquina are awe-inspiring sand dunes and there, I experienced the only time I’ve ever felt dwarfed by nature. Here you can rent sandboards to either sandsurf or sit ontop of the boards to slide down the huge dunes (“ski bunda” in Portuguese; “butt skiing”).

Ski Bunda at Dunas da Joaquina

Ski Bunda at Dunas da Joaquina

Go hiking to the Lagoinha do Leste. The hike may be difficult, but the reward on the other side of the mountain is so worth it. Not to mention, you’re seeing really beautiful views during the hike. Once you reach your destination, you can swim in shallow pools at one of the most pristine beaches in Floripa. You can also take a boat to and from this beach leaving from Pântano do Sul.

Go dancing at P12. P12 is one of my favorite clubs in Brazil! It is a beach club in the upscale Jurerê neighborhood, where Brazil’s rich and famous go for holidays. It has an outdoor pool stage as well as an indoor stage. Go in the afternoon for the sun and stay the evening for the dancing. Then when the club shuts down at midnight, go lie on the beach, under the stars!

Where should we Eat?

Florianópolis is a big island (takes two hours to drive from North to South). So, what you eat is often limited by your geographic location.

In the north of the island, in Canasvieiras, there are great beach food vendors. My favorites are the Argentine choripan, which is sausage in a bun, and pamonha, a sweet or salty tamale. And of course, on the beach you can buy a delicious caipirinha, the national cocktail of Brazil made of lime and the liquor cachaça.

In the center of the island, sitting on the banks of the Lagoa de Conceição, Casa do Pastel is a favorite. Here you can try the Brazilian pastel, which is a fried pastry with different types of fillings inside. Have it with a cold beer or a nice tropical fruit smoothie!

In the south of the island, at Ribeirão da Ilha, is an amazing seafood restaurant called Ostradamus. It is not the cheapest, but the food is worth the splurge.

Chilling in a hammock by lagoa do conceição

Chilling in a hammock by lagoa do conceição

Enjoying a caipirinha on the beach

Enjoying a caipirinha on the beach

Where can we Drink?

On the busier beaches (Mole, Jurerê, Canasvieiras, Barra da Lagoa, Campeche), you can always procure plentiful cold beers and caipirinhas at a reasonable price.

For electronic music dancing, check out P12 and Pacha in the north of the island. These two clubs often bring in famous DJs from all over the world. For Brazilian music and other types of music, stay in the center of the island in the Lagoa de Conceição area.

Where could we Stay?

If you like upscale beach vibes and electronic dance music clubbing, I would stay in the north of the island on the beaches of Jurerê or Canasvieiras.

If you prefer budget accommodations (like hostels) and a convenient starting point to explore the whole island, I would stay in Lagoa de Conceição or Barra da Lagoa, which are situated in the center of the island. Barra da Lagoa is also a great place to surf!

Dunas da Joaquina Posing with my I love floripa shirt

Dunas da Joaquina Posing with my I love floripa shirt

Anything to Avoid?

I would avoid staying in the Center of Florianópolis. The Center is just like any other city with nothing too special about it. Instead, I would stay on the beaches of Florianópolis.

Finally, why the heck should we go?

Florianópolis is a vacation hotspot for local Brazilians that is not as well known to foreigners. Go there for some of the most beautiful nature in Brazil and some of the best nightlife! It’s really paradise on earth!

Download the free Mini Guide Printable for Florianopolis >>>


Meet Tendelle:

Tendelle lived in Brazil for a year and was lucky enough to have spent 3 of those months living in Florianópolis, the Island of Magic! She spent her days there blogging and exploring the best beaches the island has to offer.

Check out Tendelle's Blog for more exotic getaway goodness:Travel à la Tendelle, www.travelalatendelle.com

Follow her on Instagram -  www.instagram.com/travelalatendelle


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I am ordering a Caipirinha this weekend. How amazing does Florianópolis look? Has Tendelle tempted you to the Island of Magic?Let us know below.