We arrived in Florianoplolis at about midday 4 hours later than scheduled which was a bit annoying. We went to collect our bags only to find that Chloes had been covered in battery acid during the journey causing some of the plastic to melt and a big hole in the top. A lot of people from Brazil go to Paraguay to buy electronics as they are dirt cheap, they then take them back to Brazil and sell them on for a lot more money. So we had to spend another 2 hours in the bus station while the company got it sorted, Chloe is pretty good at Spanish but unforteuntly Brazil is Portugese so this made everthing a little more interesting. However she came out with compensation and we got a free transfer to our hostel which was good as at this stage we were in no mood to be messing with more bloody buses.
Florianopolis is a very popular destination among Brazilians, due to the relaxed feel of the town and the beautiful beaches. Florianopolis is just off of the main land and there are two bridges which you can cross to get onto it. We stayed in the very South of the Island in a place called Pantano Dul Sul, the beach was less busy here and generally had a very relaxed feel. Our hostel was 100 metres from the beach it was just idylic. Needless to say after our incredibly hectic day all we could muster up the energy to do was lie on the beach and swim in the sea.
The hostel had a very homely feel to it, there was a big kitchen diner area where we could cook and relax, so a couple of glasses of wine there and then into the little town for an amazing fish dinner and some more wine.
Up early today as wanted to get into Lagoa which is a bit more cosmopolitan part of the island, struggling to find the bus stop we needed we stopped to ask two guys for directions. Rather kindly they were going the same way we were, both guys from France, one of them lived in Florianopolis and the other was based in Paris, they worked for a French travel company and were reseaching the Island so they could start selling it as a holiday option in France. They kindly offered to drive us to Lagoa but would go via some of the other sites on the Island so we could get to see them as well as the guy from Paris. We don't usually get into cars with strange men but the 3 of us felt that they were trust worthy. They were fantastic showed us places which would of taken us hours to get to the bus, finally we got deposited in Lagoa after being bought a coffee and a A4 sheet full of tourist information for us about the Island, such genuinly nice people!!
Lagoa is great, full of great cafes, shops, and bars. Treated ourselves to a manicure and pedicure each, of which the total price for the two was 11 pounds, I challenge someone to find a deal like that in the UK!! Well fed, shopped out and feeling less like dirty backpackers we took the bus back and quiet night with the others from the hostel, well quiet as in we went sambering with the locals!!!!
Boat trip today to Island De Campeche just off of Florianopolis. Boat trip over to the Island was about 40 mins long, we were on this very noisy shanty boat ( not quite the yaught we envisiged but was an experience!! )Beatiful protected Island, did walks around the middle and saw some amazing wildlife and vegetation. Went snorkelling and swimming in the crystal clear sea which was great as it was so hot. However you can only stay on the Island for 4 hours and then you have to catch your boat back. Just as we were getting onto ours it really clouded over and then the heavens opened. I swear we all looked like refugees when we got back accross to Florianoplolis, 25 of us sat in rows on this shanty boat soaked through, wish I had been able to catch it on camera. Back to the hostel to dry off, rained all afternoon so stayed in and watched a film which was great, it is funny the little things you miss like being able to curl up and watch the TV when the weather is rubbish.
We went back to Lagoa in the evening for dinner and drinks ( feel like we do a lot of that!!)
Back to the bus station today to get the bus to Uruguay. Sitting on the local bus heading back to the international bus station when all of a sudden the guy in front of me turns around and says hi Sarah, it was Lee who I met on the flight to Rio who helped me at the airport!!! Freaky, very small world. Boring 17 hours ahead as just the bus journey!!!