Updated on Sep.25, 2012
Bombinhas (pop. 12,456) has long been known by South American families for having some of the best beaches for kids in Brazil.
However, this city just 46 miles north of Florianópolis, on Santa Catarina's Emerald Coast, lures travelers of all ages.
Bombinhas has 39 beaches, some with higher waves, great for surfing, others with calm waters that are ideal for family with kids.
The central beaches - Bombinhas and neighboring Bombas - are the busiest in the high season; they have restaurants, nightlife, and many pousadas, several of which aimed at family vacations, with their spacious rooms and kid-friendly facilities.
Zimbros and Mariscal, both long and with calm waters, are not as crowded and also enjoyed by families. Mariscal has good surfing at the north end, closest to neighboring Atalaia, one of the best surfing points; Quatro Ilhas, further north, is another beach favored by surfers.
For a deserted stretch of sand, go to Ponta Grande, Vermelha, Triste, Porto da Vó, or Tainha.
Ecotourism and Adventure Travel:
Bombinhas has three conservation units: the Galheta and Macacos Municipal Parks and the Zimbros Coast Area of Outstanding Ecological Interest, all with good trails.Paragliding, cycling, horseback riding are other fun things to do. Learn about the options at local ecotourism and adventure travel operators such as Caminhos e Trilhas.
Swimmers will find an array of challenges in Bombinhas, particularly the 25K Arvoredo-Bombinhas crossing, considered the longest open sea challenge in the Americas.
Besides the beaches, some of the best stops in Bombinhas sightseeing are:
- Instituto Kat Schürmann
After spending 20 years at sea and becoming the first Brazilians to circumnavigate the globe aboard a sailboat, the Schürmanns started an organization devoted to fostering sustainability and the preservation of the oceans and coastal areas.
Named after Vilfredo e Heloisa Schürmann's youngest daughter, who passed away in 2006, the institute headquarters is an environmental park at Bombas Beach.
- Engenho do Sertão / Instituto Boi Mamão
Learn about local folklore and culture, including the city's Azorean heritage, at this museum/flour mill.
- Instituto Soto Delatorre/Casa do Homem do Mar
A naval museum on Bombas exploring Man's relationship with the oceans from several points of view.
- Museum and Aquarium
A private museum with over 3,000 marine invertebrates. Av. Leopardo 800 – José Amândio; 55-47-3369-1681
Where to Stay:
Where to Eat:
Berro d’ Água (Zimbros) and Casa da Lagosta (Bombinhas), are two of the most popular seafood restaurants in Bombinhas serving sequência de camarão (Santa Catarina's multi-course shrimp meal).
Massaiola (Italian); La Coquille (crepes); Tia Maria (Minas Gerais food); and Abstrato (bistro style), all on Bombinhas Beach, are good alternatives to seafood.
For a budget family trip, stay at a pousada that has apartments with kitchens, stock up at the local supermarkets and whip up some healthy meals "at home".
Bombinhas Tourism Videos:
Enjoy fabulous views of Bombinhas in these two official tourism videos (with narration in Portuguese):