In the Santa Catarina touristic region known as Encantos do Sul (Enchantments of the South), you will find a little of everything. Those who like historic cities will be enchanted by Laguna, the land of Anita Garibaldi. Then, Imbituba, Garopaba, and Jaguaruna are excellent destinations for those into eco-tourism and adventure sports, with some of the most beautiful beaches and lagoons of the South of Brazil. This coastal strip is also home to right whales in the winter, another eco-touristic attraction of the region. Away from the coast, the highlights range from the hot spring resorts of Tubarão and Gravatal to the towns where the Italian and German cultures predominate, as is the case with Urussanga, Nova Veneza, Orleans, São Martinho, Santa Rosa de Lima, Forquilhinha, and the two largest cities of Santa Catarina, Tubarão and Criciúma.
Be enchanted with the Historic Center of Laguna, the land of Anita Garibaldi
Laguna is famous because of Anita Garibaldi (1821-1849), the Santa Catarina native who went down in history for fighting beside revolutionary Giuseppe Garibaldi in Brazilian, Uruguayan, and Italian lands. The memory of Anita is preserved in various museums of the city, whose Historic Center is listed by the National Historical and Artistic Heritage Institute (IPHAN). Another attraction of the region is the Santa Marta Lighthouse (1891), the lighthouse with the farthest visual reach in South America. The natural beauty of this coastal strip also stands out, especially at Farol, Cardoso, Cigana, and Camacho beaches. And, for Carnival lovers, the good news is that Laguna has one of the best Carnivals of the South of Brazil, attracting thousands of tourists every year.
Relax in the hot springs of Tubarão and Gravatal.
With waters that spring from the source at a temperature of 37º C, Tubarão and Gravatal have developed good touristic infrastructure for people who want to benefit from the therapeutic properties of the immersion baths rich in fluorides. You will find excellent hotels, apartment-hotels, a water park, restaurants, and a wide range of commerce and services in the touristic complex associated with the Hot Springs of Gravatal and the resorts of Guarda and Rio do Pouso, in Tubarão. Another option is the hydrothermal park of Santa Rosa de Lima.
Get in touch with nature by watching whales and practicing sports at exceptionally beautiful resorts.
Encantos do Sul has some of the most beautiful beaches and lagoons of Brazil. Rosa and Vila beaches, in Imbituba, and Silveira and Ferrugem beaches, in Garopaba, are internationally famous surfing destinations. Also in Imbituba are the Lagoon and Ibiraquera Beach, considered one of the best places in Brazil for the practice of windsurfing and kitesurfing. Watching right whales is another eco-tourism activity that can be enjoyed in this region, from June to November, when these immense cetaceans come to give birth to their offspring. Descending toward the south, 5 km off the Jaguaruna coast, pro surfers practice tow-in (towed or motorized surfing) at Laje da Jaguá. Depending on the wind and the tide, the waves reach an impressive height of 9 m. On the coast of Jaguaruna, Içara, and Balneário Rincão, continuous beaches prevail, fringed by dunes, shell mounds, and lagoons – perfect refuges for relaxation and fishing.
Follow the Route of Italian and German Immigration in the South of Santa Catarina.
At the end of the 19th century, Italian immigrants tamed the interior of the region up to the foothills of the Serra Geral, founding settlements which would later become important economic and cultural center: the cities of Tubarão and Criciúma. More modest but no less interesting, Urussanga, Nova Veneza, and Orleans also stand out for the Italian influence, present mainly in the architecture, cuisine, and typical festivals. In São Martinho, Santa Rosa de Lima, and Forquilhinha, traces of German culture prevail.