History of Florianopolis

The city of Florianopolis was first inhabited by the Tupi-Guarani’s Carijós Indians who called it Meiembipe, translated as “mountain along the channel”. Traces of the group’s presence in the area date over 4000 years old.

In 1514, the Portuguese who landed in the area called it Ilha dos Patos but was later renamed as Ilha de Santa Catarina or Santa Catarina Island in English in 1526. The city played an essential role in supplying vessels for the Bacia da Prata.

Formal civilization in the city started when the agricultural company of Francisco Dias Velho – a bandeirante – arrived in 1673. This was then followed by the construction of the chapel consecrated as Nossa Senhora do Desterro which also marked the region’s becoming a colonial settlement.

To secure possession of the place, the Portuguese had Santa Catarina Island promoted to become a village in 1714 with the name Nossa Senhora do Desterro, the in 1726 it got elevated to the town category.

After being colonized and renamed several times until with what is now known as Florianopolis, the city has then started to flourish as an important trade center. This can mainly be attributed to its ideal location in Brazil’s southern coast which is halfway between Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro.