Santa Catarina

Santa Catarina is in the south of Brazil, and measures a fraction over 95 346 square kilometres or 36 813 square miles. Its population exceeds 6 million people, and its capital city is Florianópolis, the destination of many of the foreign tourists that visit Brazil. This city is situated on an island and was listed as one of the “Ten Most Dynamic Cities in the World” in 2006 by Newsweek. Santa Catarina is the smallest southern Brazilian state. 

The area now known as Santa Catarina was once inhabited by semi-nomadic tribes of hunter-gatherers. However, the Spanish explorers that arrived in South America during the 16th century discovered the island and established the first settlement there in 1542. However, 33 years later, the Portuguese seized it as their own territory and set up the captaincy of Santa Catarina in 1738. The European influx began, bringing Germans, Italians and Poles, followed by the Japanese and many others from different lands around the world. As each of these groups entered Santa Catarina, they would set up small

Image of The Hercilio Luz Bridge.
The Hercilio Luz Bridge in Florianopolis - Santa Catarina - Brazil - at sunset.
farms, which were occupied and managed by families. The heritage of the many different nationalities that flooded this state centuries ago is still evident in its architecture and certain elements of its culture.

Geographically, the state of Santa Catarina is divided into a narrow coastal plain on the east and a large plateau on the west. It is divided by the Serra Geral, a part of the Serra do Mar, which stretches from the north to the south. Its coastline is made up of a number of features, including bays, lagoons and gorgeous beaches. These beaches remain some of the state’s most popular tourist attractions. The entire area is hot and humid, and is home to the exquisite Araucaria moist forests, nestled within the very heart of Santa Catarina.

Image of Church in Florianopolis, Southern Brazil
Church in Florianopolis, Southern Brazil

In terms of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the industrial segment of the economy makes up for over half of the state’s contributions, followed by services and agriculture.

Tourists visiting Santa Catarina are urged to see the following:

  • Blumenau – home to the second largest Oktoberfest in the world, attracting well over 1 million people every year
  • The picturesque beaches for which the state is acclaimed
  • The thermal mineral resorts
  • The snow on the Catarinense Mountain Range
  • The "Joinville Dance Festival" and the "Festival of Flowers" in November
  • Goat Island (Ilha das Cabras)
  • Parque Balneário – for intriguing archaeological ruins as well as fascinating animals
  • The Itajaí Valley
  • Parque Nacional de São Joaquim
  • Treze Tílias – a marketplace

 

Here is the Santa Catarina government web site: http://www.sc.gov.br/