- Encounters with locals
- Beach / Seaside Resort
- Park and garden
- Water Sports
Fortaleza is (for tourists) a city of partying and and relaxation. The Caipirinha flows copiously in the tourist areas along the side of the ocean, and in the working-class areas, any occasion is good enough reason to share a little cachaça while nibbling a chicken kebab!
The city's traffic is quite chaotic. However, the area around Fortaleza is worth a trip by dune buggy to go and see. On the road leading to Caponga, I discovered the charming, semi-arid landscape of the Caatinga as well as mangroves and Ceará's wonderful wild coast, with its dunes and lagoons. Fortaleza is a very welcoming place for those who like to relax on holiday! Plain and simply, it's all about enjoying the sun and the ocean here.
At the end of the afternoon, walking along the Beria Mar promenade, you may come across – as I did – the craft market of "de Praia do Meireles", which is set out close to the sea front every evening. This is the ideal place to find souvenir gifts and all kinds of artifacts. Be sure to go and take a look around it!
One final little tip for the road, and something that will particularly delight meat lovers: pay a visit to the "Sal e Brasa" restaurant. For ridiculously low prices, and eating as much as you like, you will get to taste and enjoy some simply delicious spit-roasted meats, as well as the best caipirinha in the city!
In my opinion, most of the state capitals in Brazil are of little or no interest to tourists traveling in Brazil. Fortaleza is one of those cities with nothing going for it. There are plenty of people who would not agree with me, but the soul of Brazil is in the little towns and villages, and in the natural wonders of the country, above all.
Nevertheless, Fortaleza is a necessary stage in any journey to the surrounding heavenly beaches, in particular Jericoacoara and Canoa Quebrada.
The central beaches are still good (Iracema and Praia do Futuro), but like all big cities in Brazil they have their fair share of thefts from tourists.
To sum up, if you like it and you're in the area, take a day tour of the city to see what there is to see, but to spend more than a few hours would be a waste of time.
Above all, Fortaleza is a fairly modern city which is very lively at night.
I stopped over there and walked around the city center. Its streets are full of life and there are masses of little shops. I had the chance to visit an exhibition on the traditional culture of the Ceara at the Arts Center. It's a building which brings together everything which is linked to art and enables everyone to discover it. Then I visited the José de Alencar Theater, one of the few buildings constructed in 1910.
Next, I went to the tourist information office because I wanted to take a boat trip (which I did the following day) on the Rio Coco in the ecological park. I had a great time, with a guide who showed me lots of things which I wouldn't have seen without him. Later on, I wandered along the avenue beside the ocean toward Praia de Iracema and watched the sun set over the waves.