A long awaited and adventurous day

Florianopolis Travel Blog

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:) Today was corpus day which is widely celebrated in Brazil, and for this reason EVERYTHING closes, and class got canceled. I took advantage of this by waking up at 6:00AM with a few other girls to hit the beaches. Ever since I have been here I have been waiting for my beach time, and today was the day. We caught the 7AM bus to go to Ingleses, which is a family beach named after the survivors of an English shipwreck who formed a colony there. It is now a very popular hotspot in Florianopolis. Rachel, Lynn, Sohmer, and I all do not speak Portuguese very well so it was interesting asking for directions on what bus to take, and what bus to transfer on--but we managed. We had to transfer busses twice, and pay an additional 2.10 reals--the total amounting to 4.20 reals which is roughly $2. We eventually found our destination which was an absolutely stunning and spectacular view. I feel that these Brazilians are absolutely spoiled here because every beach that I have been to is ‘the most beautiful beach’ I have seen. Sohmer brought her bed sheet so we could all lay on it, and at 8:30 in the morning we were already laying on the beach. Passerbys looked at us as if we were crazy, thinking “what the hell are these crazy people doing out on the beach at 9 in the morning in WINTER…the must be foreigners”. We didn’t care, WE ARE IN BRAZIL!!! I knew I would not last but an hour before I would be tempted to get in, and that is exactly what happened. The water was cold, but not unbearable, and in fact it was very refreshing once you got used to it. I brought my goggles and swam in the ocean until I was tired (I needed to work out). After we ate packed lunches on the beach under the sun. Then we decided that we would go hiking that was recommended in the guide book that Rachel had. We walked to the destination, and found it to be somewhat dangerous hiking--on boulders that went into the ocean. The path was not clear, nor was it marked. I was skeptical at first, but then we saw a guy quickly climb the boulders and cross the mountain. It was intense--and I like intense. The guide book explained that the trail would take about 1 hour, and at the end is a wonderful secluded beach. We decided to try it out. We climbed and bouldered, but the path was not clear, we did not know what to do. We started to realize that this was not a trail that a tourist could just simply follow, and that it was one more for the locals who know of this “secret path”. Lucky for us there were two local men who were so enthusiastic about showing us their beautiful country and guiding us through the trail. They did not speak any English, but we were able to communicate well enough. They were extremely friendly, and very passionate about their beautiful country. This was the most extreme hiking/bouldering I have ever done, and it was worth every second. As Lynn said, I felt like I was in Jurassic park, climbing up rocks, bouldering, walking through the woods, with the beautiful island birds surrounding me, and occasionally getting a beautiful panorama view of the coast. It was breathtaking. Eventually, after about an hour and a half of spectacular views we finally arrived at our destination. Praia Brava, or “Angry Beach” was the destination, but ‘angry’ is exactly what it was not. It was beautiful and serene, white sand beaches, crystal clear water. A woman far in the distance, seemed to be topless, stood and stretched. It was so relaxing, so serene, so peaceful, so freeing. Lynn, Sohmer and I all went swimming as we were drenched in sweat from the long hike. Rachel who is very cold natured watched over our belongings. There were very few people on the beach, I felt like we owned the entire beach. The sun goes down early here in Brazil (around 6PM), and we wanted to head home before dark. We decided it would be fun to hitchhike and that is exactly what we did. We jumped in a mobile home of an older man and his ‘significant other’. Martin was his name, he was a sailor, and a traveller. He told us stories of how he traveled the world, and he recommended several places to visit while in Brazil. They were both extremely friendly. Unfortunately when we asked them to bring us to Lagoa (where we are staying), they said that they are also staying there, but that they JUST left, and that they could drop us off at the main road. They did just that, then with our lack of Portuguese we eventually managed to find the bus stop that would bring us back to Lagoa. When we were on the bus, Lynn looked out her window and noticed that Martin and his woman were right next to us driving on the road!! They followed us to the next stop, and I assumed that they wanted us to get off, but we didn’t because we were afraid we might be on the last bus back to Lagoa (since it was a holiday, and they had less busses running). Then when we were waving bye to them, they were waving to come with them….so at the next stop we got off the bus to go with them. Ironic isn’ it? It was such an adventure. They were so incredibly nice to us. We took a detour before we went back to Lagoa (Martin asked us if it was okay). He gave us a tour of one of the oldest cities in the town--called Salsache (spelling not sure?). It was beautiful. Martin told us his stories of his various site visits around the world, his eyes gleamed with passion as he told his stories. I was envious of his nomadic and adventurous lifestyle. I learned so incredibly much today and honestly it was one of the highlights of my entire stay in Argentina and in Brazil. The passion that the locals have for their country is absolutely unbelievable and it is one that I have never experienced before. Their willingness to stop everything to help a foreigner, or just to chitchat regardless of the language barrier, is absolutely wonderful. Granted it is a beach town, and people tend to be more relaxed, but even with this my general experience with the locals was absolutely splendid. Viva floripa! :)
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photo by: Vagabondatheart