History and Culture

Santa Catarina is full of historical and cultural attractions. The state has numerous architectural areas listed by IPHAN (Institute of National Historical and Artistic Heritage), churches, museums, memorials and monuments, as well as important archaeological sites. There are also theaters, cinemas and cultural spaces in the major cities in Santa Catarina, where you can watch plays, films, concerts and exhibitions by local, national and international artists.

Admire the rich historical heritage of Santa Catarina, full of European influences.

After the arrival of the Portuguese discoverers, Santa Catarina received, throughout the centuries, waves of German and Italian immigrants, and, in smaller numbers, Azorean, Polish, Ukrainian, Dutch, Austrian and Japanese settles, as well as others. The typical architecture and monuments found in each municipality are a reference to the culture of their colonizers, and you can find a wide variety of styles throughout the state. Altogether there are 22 architectural areas listed by IPHAN (Institute of National Historical and Artistic Heritage), in addition to the buildings listed by the state and municipalities. Museums and memorials preserve important historical collections from each region.

Discover dozens of shell middens, archaeological sites and other prehistoric remains.

There are traces of human presence in Santa Catarina from 8,000 years ago. Santa Catarina has many archaeological sites and museums that preserve prehistoric relics, chipped stone and polished stone artifacts, and bones and fossils. The shell middens (areas where the Indians processed foods and buried the dead) are also prominent in the state. In the municipality of Jaguaruna there are over 30 middens, including one of the largest in the world, which has an area of 10 hectares and reaches 30 m high.

Explore Indian reservations that house the descendants of the first inhabitants of Santa Catarina.

Archeological records show that indigenous peoples occupied Santa Catarina for at least 5,000 years. Currently, there are Kaingang, Guarani and Xokleng Indians living on reservations in Alto Vale do Itajaí, in the northern and western regions of the state. Visiting their villages is a good way to learn about the culture of these peoples.

Have fun doing cultural activities.

Attending theater shows, visiting art exhibitions, and watching movies and musical performances are some of the cultural activities you can do in Santa Catarina. The major cities in Santa Catarina have cinemas, theaters, galleries and other alternative spaces that house the most diverse artistic and cultural expressions.