Florianopolis is a long peninsula that runs parallel to the coast of southern brazil. The city of Florianopolis lies on both sides of the connecting bridge, but the rest of the peninsula is jungle, beautiful beaches and fishing villages.
The first night we stayed in town of Lagoa, located in the middle of the peninsula on an internal lagoon. Lagoa is a party town, so our plan was to stay there for one night and move to one of the beach places the next day. We arrived late and went to sleep shortly.
The next day Jenn was not feeling well. After the breakfast she threw up once... then once more... She was feeling really bad and miserable. When she had nothing else to throw up I ran to the pharmacy and got her special pills that stop vomiting. After she took one she seemed to feel a bit better so we decided that it's time to move to our next hostel - a small place in a village called Barra de Lagoa. To get there we had to take a taxi, so we took our bags and headed out. After two minutes of walking, the taxi stop was five minutes down the road, Jenn was not feeling well again so I left her on the side of the road by a rain drain grate and went to get us a taxi. The problem in Brazil is that Brazilians don't speak Spanish, and my Portuguese is zero. So it took me a lot of effort and gesticulation to explain the driver that we need to go pickup my wife first and then turn around and go to the hostel. The ride there was pretty rough too, the road was bumpy and hilly and I thought a couple of times that we will need to stop and let Jenn out. On top of that, when we got to Barra we discovered that the road goes only up to a small lagoon and our hostel is on the other side. We had to walk across a little humpback bridge and then climb steep uphill. When we finally got there Jenn was not happy. But the view from the hostel was beautiful and I was in a great mood, positive that the next day Jenn will be a bit happier about everything.
We booked the hostel in Barra for two nights with an intention to extend later, but the room was crap (tiny, smelly, and without bathroom) and the prospect of staying there longer didn't appeal to us. So we and a german guy we met in the hostel headed to look for a new place. After checking a few places out we found a lovely posada right on Mole beach, where we stayed for another five nights.
We were meeting Linds and Joe in Sao Paolo on the 16th, and wanted to relax in one place instead of running around and trying to see more of coastal Brazil, so staying in Floripa for longer was the logical thing to do and it worked out great. Every day we explored the area better. One day we spent chilling at Mole beach, hanging out in Bar Blue with drinks food and wifi. Another day we rented a scooter and headed to Campeche, a beautiful stretch of white sand protected from the strong Atlantic waves by Campeche island. Locals say, that on a quiet day when the ocean is still you can swim across the gap to the island, but surfers do it every day to enjoy the great waves on the other side. That day we also had lunch in a fishing village of Armacao, place unspoiled by tourism where you can get great shrimp that was caught only a few hours ago. It was really nice, plus we walked out to the point for a great view of the bay.
Next day was our last so we headed to the southmost tip of the island to see the fishing village of Pantano do Sul and possibly checkout the wild beach close by. Our Lonely Planet book recommended a place to eat there, that supposed to have the best fish rice and beans combo around. A thing to be said about Brazil, by the way, is that they LOVE fish with rice and beans. You can order the fish whole or as a fillet and have it deep-fried or pan-fried, it comes out delicious either way. And Brazilian beans are amazing! They cook them into a soup-like sauce, keeping the beans whole, with garlic and other spices... Mmmmmmm... Anyway, it took as a little while to get all the way south to Pantano do Sul and by the time we got there we were already hungry so we decided to hit the restaurant straight away. The place was cool, decorated in local style with simple carvings. But the cool thing was thousands of thank-you notes stuck to the walls by the costumers, there was no empty spots on the walls and the ceiling. We were greeted by a shot of local liqueur, ordered caipirinhas (our Brazilian staple drink) and food. By the time the food arrived we were pretty drunk and were not sure how we got to that state so fast 🙂 We devoured the food, it was the best local meal we had so far. Pantano do Sul is absolutely a must visit spot on Floripa.
Our original plan was to hike after lunch to a wild beach close by. The hike about 45 minutes each way, over a big hill covered in dense jungle. But we were so full after the lunch, and drunk on top of that, that we could not possibly get on the scooter, drive to the start of the trail and then hike... Instead we ended up lying on the beach, rolling from side to side, and sighing about how full we are. Around 4 o'clock Jenn decided that it's not acceptable and that we still need to do the hike, even though we have no time at the beach. So we headed into the mosquito infested jungle, Jenn walking ahead and me tailing behind - dragging my feet and complaining. Halfway up the hill the jungle became much darker and we realised that the sun is setting slowly and we don't have time to make it to the beach and back. Instead, we got to the top of the hill, to a lookout point, took in the beautiful view and headed back. Definitely worth it - great shots too.
That was our last full day on Floripa. The next day we spent sometime at the beach and had lunch. Towards the evening we headed to the main bus terminal in city centre - a long bus ride away, to get our night bus to Sao Paolo.
Meeting Linds and Joe = exciting! Going to Sao Paolo = intimidating!