Florianópolis

Florianópolis

[flawr-ee-uh-nop-uh-lis, flohr-; Port. flaw-ryuh-naw-poo-lees]
Florianópolis, city (1996 pop. 268,551), capital of Santa Catarina state, SE Brazil, on Santa Catarina Island. An administrative and cultural center and a port city, it is linked with the mainland by a huge suspension bridge (built 1926). The city was founded as Destěrro in 1673 by colonists from São Paulo and became the capital of the captaincy of Santa Catarina in 1739. It was renamed (1893) for Floriano Peixoto, a president of Brazil. Its commercial importance began to decrease in the late 19th cent. as the interior of the state was developed. The Univ. of Santa Catarina is in Florianópolis.

Florianópolis (nicknamed Floripa) is the capital city of Santa Catarina State in southern Brazil. It is composed of one main island, the Island of Santa Catarina (Ilha de Santa Catarina), a continental part and the surrounding small islands. It has a population of 406,564, according to a 2006 IBGE estimate. The metropolitan area has an estimated population of 821,552.

The economy of Florianópolis is heavily based on tourism and services. The city has 42 pristine beaches and is a center of surfing activity. VEJA magazine, a Brazilian publication, named Florianopolis "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, North Americans and Europeans.

Most of the population lives on the island's northern half. The southern half is more isolated and less developed. Many small commercial fishermen populate the island. Although originally settled 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 immigrants who settled the region 250 years ago, marks the island personality. The fishing boats, the lacemakers, the folklore, the cuisine and the colonial architecture distinguish the tourism and attract resources that compensate for the lack of large industry. Villages immersed in tradition and history, such as Santo Antônio de Lisboa and Ribeirão da Ilha resist the advances of modernity.

The Hercílio Luz International Airport serves the city. Florianópolis is home to the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Federal University of Santa Catarina).

Geography

Climate

Florianópolis experiences a humid subtropical climate. The seasons of the year are distinct, with a well-defined summer and winter, and characteristic weather for fall and spring. Frost is infrequent, but occurs occasionally in the winter. Due to the proximity of the sea, the relative humidity of the atmosphere is 80% on average.

There is significant precipitation which is well distributed throughout the year. The annual normal precipitation for the period of 1911 through 1984 was . There is no dry season, and summer generally is the rainiest season. Increased rainfall occurs from January to March, with a median of per month, and from April to December there is somewhat less precipitation, averaging per month. The dryest months are from June to August.

On average of the maximum temperatures of the hottest month varies from to and on average of the minimum temperatures are from to . The lowest temperature ever recorded was , in 1975.

Vegetation

Florianópolis has the Atlantic Forest. This vegetation has an extremely diverse and unique mix of vegetation and forest types. The two main ecoregions in the hotspot are the coastal Atlantic forest, the narrow strip of about 50-100 kilometers (31-62 miles) along the coast which covers about 20 percent of the region. These forests extend as far as 500-600 kilometers (310-372 miles) inland and range as high as 2,000 meters above sea level. Altitude determines at least three vegetation types in the Atlantic Forest: the lowland forest of the coastal plain, montane forests, and the high-altitude grassland or campo rupestre.

Demographics

According to the IBGE of 2006, there were 406,564 residents in the city. The city has the 4th best HDI in Brazil, and the best life quality of Brazilian capitals. Florianópolis has a population mostly composed of Brazilians of European descent. Its colonization started in the mid-18th century, mostly with the arrival of Portuguese colonists from the Azores Islands. Florianópolis was composed mainly of Azoreans, Germans, and Italians. Further south, some districts also preserve their rural village identity, and the heritage left by their Azorean ancestors is noticeable in their manner of speaking, in their handicraft activities, and typical feasts. On the other side, the city has taken on a cosmopolitan air with the arrival of Brazilians from other States and foreigners who chose to live there. The island, which in the beginning of the colonization period, was an important whale hunting centre, is today the technological pole of the IT industry. A State Capital of interest to tourism, Florianópolis is currently inhabited by about 400,000 people, a number that triples every summer.

Economy

Tourism is one of the staples of Florianópolis' economy; it is considered by many inhabitants and tourists that Floripa has a singular beauty endowed with strong lines of Azorean culture, observed in the buildings, workmanship, folklore, culinary and religious traditions. Its environmental restrictions on building and commercial development have been more or less regularly enforced. This accounts for the singular natural beauty of this island.

In addition to its popular sugar soft white sand beaches Florianópolis offers many historical attractions, including the sites of the original Azorean colonists, the Lagoa da Conceição lagoon, and Santo Antônio de Lisboa. Tourism in Florianópolis has grown significantly over the past 10 years, with increasing numbers of visitors coming from other large cities in Brazil (particularly Porto Alegre, Curitiba, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro) as well as other South American countries (particularly Argentina, with direct flights offered daily from Buenos Aires) During the past several years a greater number of international tourists have also begun to frequent the island (particularly from Europe and the United States), and 2006 marked the opening of the city's first multinational hotel, a Sofitel, and first US-based specialty tour operator, Nexus Surf. As the number of visitors to the island grows each year, Florianopolis faces the ongoing challenge of ensuring that its limited insfrastructure and resources will continue to adequately accommodate them.

During the past decade technology and software development firms also experienced strong growth, and today IT services are one of the top revenue generators in Florianopolis. Several technology centers are spread around Florianopolis, making the city (together with Joinville and Blumenau) an important pole in this economic sector.

The GDP for the city was R$ 6,259,393,000 (2005).

The per capita income for the city was R$ 15,776 (2005).

Education

Portuguese is the official national language, and thus the primary language taught in schools. But English and Spanish are part of the official high school curriculum.

Educational institutions

  • Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC);
  • Universidade do Estado de Santa Catarina (UDESC);
  • Complexo de Ensino Superior de Santa Catarina (CESUSC);
  • Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina (UNISUL);
  • Universidade do Vale do Itajaí (UNIVALI);
  • Faculdade Estácio de Sá;
  • Centro Federal de Educação Tecnológica de Santa Catarina (Cefet-SC);
  • and many others.

Tourism and recreation

The island is connected to the Continent by three bridges. The Hercílio Luz Bridge was built over 70 years ago and is now closed to traffic; it is a symbol of the island and often appears on postcard images. The Colombo Sales Bridge and Pedro Ivo Bridge are the ones open to traffic.

Santo Amaro da Imperatriz was the first thermal water facility in Brazil. Hotels with thermal bath facilities are located in the district of Caldas da Imperatriz and in the city of Águas Mornas. The Fonte Caldas da Imperatriz city baths are an additional source of thermal waters, which can reach the temperature of , where there are immersion baths and hydromassage. It is located on the Estrada Geral Highway, km 4, Caldas da Imperatriz district.

ASP World Tour, Association of Surfing Professionals (WCT) Florianópolis is the main location of the WCT, which classifies 50 competitors, among professionals and amateurs. The state of Santa Caterina is the only location in South America for this event. The Holy Spirit Feast (Festa do Divino) is a festival that takes place 40 days after Easter. The celebration dates to the colonial era and includes a parade, music, and street food.

One of the most famous beaches is Praia Mole, noted for its rolling green hills and rock formations on either side.

Barra da Lagoa This is the world famous "Bunny Slope" of Surfing. It is home to world champion Jacqueline Silva and from Praia Mole which usually hosts the WCT Surfing Championships. Barra da Lagoa is a quaint fisherman's village but the physical characteristics of the beach make it the perfect place to learn to surf. It is a cove on the Eastern part of the island and stretchs into Moçambique beach for . It is in a natural setting as there are no huge hotels on the beach and the Southern headquarters of Projeto TAMAR (Save the Turtles) is located here. Penguins routinely swim into the canal and near the beach of Barra da Lagoa during the colder winter months of June, July and August. The canal at Barra da Lagoa connects the Lagoa da Conceição with the open sea. It is not uncommon to view pescadores (fisherman) during the night tossing their nets in the lagoa to catch shrimp they sell to the fresh fish restaurants in this community.

Ingleses Beach (Praia dos Ingleses) Even though it is a beach preferred by tourists, Ingleses still keeps to the traditions of the Açorian colonizers. In the summer, it is one of the top beach destinations of Argentine tourists, second only to Canasvieras. In the winter, mullet fishing, religious celebrations and regional festivities are beautiful demonstrations of the local culture. The dunes separating the Ingleses Beach from the Santinho Beach are natural attractions not to be missed. The practice of sand board is quite common there, a sport created in Florianópolis, which consists of sliding down the dunes on a board, engaging or not in radical manoeuvres. To practice it, one must have a lot of balance and rent a board. Those looking for a different outing can go on a trek of over the dunes.

Armação Beach (Praia da Armação) The Sant'Anna Church, built by the Armação fishing company, is part of the beach’s history. It was from there that whale harpooners and crewmen confessed and attended the mass before going fishing. Next, the priest would go down to the beach to bless the boats that would sail out to sea. 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 archeological sites of the State of Santa Catarina.

Campeche Beach (Praia do Campeche) With of white sands and a turbulent waters, Campeche is considered the Jeffreys Bay of the Santa Catarina Island for the quality of its waves. For those who are not interested in surfing, the beach offers other attractions. The paradisiacal beauty of Ilha do Campeche, for instance, located across from the beach, a football game on the Saint-Exupéry aviation field, or even fishing, are some of the leisure alternatives. At night, Campeche is also an excellent attraction. The huge reflector that illuminates part of the large sand strip in front of the bars only contributes to the partying that extends far into the night. The illumination favours both those who enjoy the merrymaking as well as the fishermen, who use the time to drag their nets in from the sea.

Joaquina Beach (Praia da Joaquina) Won fame as of the 1970s, when surfers from around the world discovered its waves. Many surf cups began to emerge, and great Catarinense surfing personalities. It is one of the beaches that offers the best tourist facilities, receiving a large number of tourists from around Brazil and the world on the warm days in spring and summer. The rock complex situated to the left of the beach, the night lighting and the public showers are some of the trademarks at Joaquina. There is a big paid parking lot, toilets, tourist coach parking lot, lifeguards, police station, handicraft shop, bars, restaurant and hotels. In addition to the beach, it is possible to enjoy the most famous dunes in the South of the country as well as to sand board. The boards used in this sport can be rented on the spot.

Santinho Beach (Praia do Santinho) is mainly sought by tourists who look for nature, the location’s paradisiacal beauty and tranquillity. Surfers are the main visitors and consider Santinho to be the best beach in the North of the Santa Catarina Island. It is in the left hand corner – where bathers do not venture -- that surfers practice their sport, sharing the space with fishermen. away from the centre of Florianópolis, another great attraction of this beach are the primitive inscriptions made by hunters, fishermen and collectors inhabiting the Island five thousand years ago. 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

Infrastructure

International Airport

Florianópolis is served by Hercílio Luz International Airport for both domestic and international flights. The traffic has grown significantly at the airport and therefore the city will shortly receive a new airport able to serve 2.7 million passengers a year. The architectural design of the new airport was chosen by a public competition held by Infraero in partnership with the Brazilian Architects Institute (IAB). Among the over 150 original entries, the proposal of São Paulo architect Mário Bizelli was chosen.

Highways

Florianópolis is connected to the main cities of Brazil by BR-101 and BR-282 federal highways.

Bus Terminal

Rita Maria is the city's main bus terminal, located by the Pedro Ivo Campos Bridge, on the island, serving ten thousand people daily, which can reach up to fifteen thousand during the summer season. The bus terminal connects Florianopolis to the majority of the cities, towns and villages of Santa Catarina, and to the main cities in the South, Southeast and Central-West regions of Brazil. As an international bus terminal, Florianopolitanos and tourists alike use Rita Maria also to reach Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Chile.

Distances

Neighborhoods

There are more than 40 neighborhoods in Florianópolis:

  • Abraão;
  • Agronômica;
  • Barra da Lagoa
  • Bom Abrigo;
  • Cachoeira do Bom Jesus;
  • Cacupé;
  • Campeche;
  • Canasvieiras;
  • Canto da Lagoa;
  • Capoeiras;
  • Carianos;
  • Carvoeira;
  • Centro;
  • Chácara do Espanha;
  • Coqueiros;
  • Córrego Grande;
  • Costa da Lagoa;
  • Costa de Dentro;
  • Estreito;
  • Ingleses do Rio Vermelho;
  • Itacorubi;
  • Itaguaçu;
  • Jardim Atlântico;
  • João Paulo;
  • José Mendes;
  • Jurerê Internacional;
  • Jurerê;
  • Lagoa da Conceição;
  • Moçambique;
  • Monte Verde;
  • Morro das Pedras;
  • Pantanal;
  • Pântano do Sul;
  • Parque São Jorge;
  • Ponta das Canas;
  • Prainha;
  • Ratones;
  • Rio Vermelho;
  • Saco dos Limões;
  • Saco Grande;
  • Sambaqui;
  • Santa Mônica;
  • Santo Antônio de Lisboa;
  • Trindade;
  • Vargem do Bom Jesus;
  • Vargem Grande.
  • Sports

    Football (Soccer)

    There are two professional football teams in the city. The derby between them is known as "O Clássico da Capital" ("The Capital's Classic").

    Figueirense FC - black and white. Its nickname is Figueira ("Figtree") and it is also known as O Furacão do Estreito ("The Estreito's Hurricane"). Its stadium is the Orlando Scarpelli, located in the Estreito neighborhood, in the continental part of the city. Figueirense is currently playing the Brazilian first division. As of May 4 2008, the team has won Santa Catarina State Championship 15 times, an all-time record.

    Avaí FC - blue and white. It is also known as O Leão da Ilha ("The Lion of the Island"). Its stadium is the Aderbal Ramos da Silva, popularly known as Ressacada, located in the Carianos neighborhood, in the south part of the island. Avaí is currently playing the Brazilian national second division and holds 13 State Championship titles.

    Florianópolis is one of the 18 remaining candidates to host games of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, which Brazil is scheduled to host.

    Tennis

    Florianópolis is the hometown of tennis player Gustavo Kuerten.

    Surf

    The island is generally considered to be blessed with the best and most consistent waves in Brazil, and in early November of each year hosts what is currently South America's only ASP (Association of Surfing Professionals) World Championship Tour professional surfing competition. Brazil has played host to many an ASP tour event over the past 30 years. Former contest sites include Rio de Janeiro, Barra de Tijuca and Saquarema, but the past four years have seen the tour set up shop in Florianopolis.

    Falling towards the end of the tour, the past few years have seen several ASP world champions crowned in Brazil. In 2004 it was Andy Irons, and in 2005 it was Kelly Slater (who had his 2006 ASP World Title already stitched up by Brazil).

    Famous Florianopolitanos

    Sister cities

    Florianópolis is twinned with the following cities:

    References

    External links

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