Florianopolis has about the best vacation setup possible. It's a little (couple hours longways across) island with a big lake in the middle, and the north is dominated by tourists, the east by young people, nightlife, and popular beaches, and the south by unspoilt nature. There's a map in the hostel I stayed at with little cartoons of people having different kinds of fun around the island; all the women are wading or sunbathing, and the men do all other activities. For some of the beaches, the women aren't wearing bathing suits.
Alas, this paradise is not for me to enjoy this year. I came to relax on the beaches and even out my tan (which is currently concentrated on my nose), and it didn't stop raining the whole time I was there. The second day, it achieved torrential-downpour-levels, and the hostel started to flood: one of the room's ceilings ceased to function (except as a kind of permeable membrane); a storm drain overflowed in the main hallway; the streets outside became rivers. I went to the south before the rain got bad looking for a nice walk. I found my isolated fishing village, but didn't find the trail before the rain washed out my enthusiasm for the venture. *shrug*-- rain happens.
An extraverted Canadian almost convinced me that the best place to experience Carnaval was right in Florianopolis. Hostels around Rio de Janeiro are essentially booked, and room rates are excessive. I went through a ton of couchsurfing profiles and sent off a pile of requests, all of which were coming back negative. Until, that is, a cool, very liberal dude in Niteroi with a tiny flat, said that if I could squeeze in, he'd let me. So I'm off to Rio!
(Well, was off to Rio-- I'm now there and gone, and soon to return to the states!)