The Weekend in Floripa

Gramado to Florianopolis was a 9 hour 30 minute slog on the bus. It took a long route back south towards Porto Alegre before heading to the coast then north towards Florianopolis covering 560 km and numerous stops!

We arrived by 8 in the evening and got an Uber up to Jurere on the north coast of the island to where Sara and Joe live. As always we were given a warm welcome and a cold beer!

Unfortunately Joe had managed to fracture his hip and was pretty much confined to his wheel chair or the couch, not much of an issue for him as there was plenty of football to watch! On Saturday evening we all went for a walk, or a push in Joe’s case, down to the centre of Jurere for a beer or two while listening to a live band.

Sara also took us to visit a bit of Jurere we’d not seen before and was right up my street, a fort, the Fortaleza de São José.

The island of Florianopolis shelters the first ports in the area and so the Portugese set fortifications to defend them, São José on the north west corner of the island was one of three such forts covering the approaches to the bay. It was built between 1740 and 1744 but after the Spanish invaded in 1777 the forts were found to be ineffective and were gradually abandoned.

To my eye São José was more of a huge gun battery with limited defenses against troops; lots of low walls and fairly easy access. It was interesting and the views were worth the visit.

Unfortunately it was just a fleeting visit as we were only passing through and were off again on Monday morning heading for Blumenau. As always Sara and Joe made us really welcome and we enjoyed the evening card games. We left wishing Joe well, although he is sure he’ll be wheel chair bound until about May … “When does the football season finish Joe?”

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