4 Things to do in Balneário Camboriú 

 December 4, 2020

By  Wilson

Name a city in Brazil other than São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro.

Rightttt. Okay – I admittedly was one of those a few years ago. Other than the famous cities, I had no knowledge of Brazilian culture, let alone Brazilian geography. But going even more granular probably requires a visit to “the other cities” – like Salvador, or Belo Horizonte.

Panoramic view of Balneário Camboriú

Panoramic view of Balneário Camboriú from the Unipraia Gondola

For me, this “other cities” place was Florianópolis (AKA Floripa) in the state of Santa Catarina. And being in Florianópolis eventually lead me “next door” to the feature city of this post.

How I Got There

As usual whenever I travel, I either take a United flight or search for the cheapest flight on kayak.com. I wrote an article about how I stick to flying on United as much as possible to cash out big with my miles.

For this trip, I booked a flight through my United miles from Houston to Florianópolis (through São Paulo). I stayed in Floripa for a month before this stop.

And I decided to be a bit adventurous and spontaneous with this one. I hitched a ride from Florianópolis to this one city where they call it the “Dubai of Brazil” – the place that has skyscrapers near the beaches everywhere and where people from all over the county come to shop at luxurious malls. This city is Balneário Camboriú.

Balneário Shopping

Balneário Shopping, one of the biggest malls in Balneário Camboriú

You know that one kid in high school that was sort of bougee but humble? The one that wasn’t quite the football jock at major events but was the captain of the varsity tennis team that only the classiest girls had a crush on? Yeah, that’s how I would describe Balneário Camboriú. Ok, quick admin pause here – I’m going to call it BC from this point on because, well, I can’t pronounce it either.

Here are my 4 things to do in BC:

1. Morro Do Careca

If you look left, you have a nice view. If you look right, you have a nice view. If you look straight, you have a nice view.

Praia Brava from Morro Do Careca

The view of Praia Brava from Morro Do Careca

Ok, I think you get it. But the short, 10 minute hike to the top was worth while on a sunny day. Morro Do Careca “splits” Praia Brava from the rest of BC, which includes the famous strip of Av. Atlântica that connects Barra Sul with Barra Norte.

2. Parque Unipraias Camboriú

There’s a gondola (10 minutes) that takes you up to the top in the Barra Sul neighborhood. There was a theme park that had a number of things to do, such as go karting and zip lining.

It’s also a great place to eat and relax by the viewpoints.

Praia Das Laranjeiras from Unipraias Park

The view of Praia Das Laranjeiras from Unipraias Park

3. Cristo Luz

I know Rio de Janeiro is currently reading this section and saying “brb, laughing.” Even Cochabamba, Bolivia probably is saying the same thing. But the Cristo statue of BC offers a similar charm that certainly adds some flavor to the city.

Cristo Luz

Cristo Luz in Balneário Camboriú

4. Barra Norte

In the classic match of North versus South, the North boasts the following:

  • Ferris Wheel
  • Closer access to Praia Brava.
Balneário Camboriú from Barra Norte

The view of Balneário Camboriú from Barra Norte

While the South wins in these areas:

  • Unipraias Theme Park
  • Mini Boat Tours
  • Closer access to Praia Das Laranjeiras.

It’s hard to say which is better. In my opinion, *if* you had to choose, I think it’s better to stay in Barra Norte but it’s better to visit Barra Sul. But again, I’m talking about a 9-8 score in a baseball game with the bottom of 13th inning coming up.

Where I Stayed

I booked an Airbnb in Barra Norte. I think anyway along the Av. Atlântica strip (from Barra Norte to Barra Sul) is perfect for a stay.

By the way, I wrote a separate article on How I Choose Where I Stay when I Travel.

If I Had More Time, I Would Have…

  • Gone to Praia Brava (the one I mentioned that you can see from Morro Do Careca).
  • Gone to Praia Das Laranjeiras. There was an option to exit there instead of Barra Sul.

Closing Remarks

I had to bust out the laptop and write about this city immediately when I returned from the weekend trip. BC has left me mildly-obsessed with the vibe – from the fantastic social life potential to the view from the 12th floor pool of the apartment building, glazing at the surfable beaches – I immediately knew that this Brazilian hidden gem deserved a place on my blog.

Final Grade: A


ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Hi, my name is Wilson, founder of WFH Nomad. I was born and raised in the US, and I boast engineering and business degrees from top programs in the US. I work a normal, WFH job for a great company in America. I am extremely passionate about traveling and my job in the Tech industry, and the best part of the WFH Nomad concept is that I can do both at the same time.

I have traveled to over 47 different countries in my lifetime and I look forward to continue this lifestyle for the foreseeable future. Thanks for visiting the website!

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