Fortaleza Travel Guide
Introduction to Fortaleza
Those looking for a taste of the equatorial tropics in Brazil will be well-served to set course for Fortaleza.
Situated only 3 degrees below the equator, those that are bound for its beaches only need to worry about whether it is wet or dry season; those arriving between the months of August to December are in luck in this regard, as almost no rain falls during this time.
Even so, those arriving during the wet season will still see plenty of sunshine outside of the torrential downpours that occur in the afternoon, evening, or overnight.
Outside of only a few hours a day when it is pelting down rain, those craving a little time on some of the most beautiful beaches in Brazil will still have plenty of opportunity to enjoy the best that Fortaleza has to offer.
Cultural Attractions in Fortaleza
Those looking for a taste of culture when in Fortaleza will want to spend at least one night at the Dragon of the Sea Cultural Center during their visit here.
Named for a man who played a key role in the emancipation of the slaves in northeastern Brazil in the 19th century, this facility is home to a contemporary art museum, theaters for stage productions, a cinema, a planetarium, and much more.
In the general vicinity of the Dragon of the Sea Cultural Center, one can also find many restaurants and bars, making this place the perfect spot to take in a little culture in the early evening, and then experience the lively nightlife that Fortaleza is famous for.
Another famous cultural institution in Fortaleza is Theatro José de Alencar. This art nouveau-style building is home to countless theater, opera, and ballet productions throughout the year, so if you don’t find what you are looking for at the Dragon of the Sea Cultural Center, there’s a good chance you’ll find a show that is to your liking here.
While it might not appear to be a worthwhile attraction at first glance, you’ll be glad that you gave the Catedral Metropolitana de Fortaleza a fair chance once you step inside.
This Gothic Roman style church was designed by French architect George Mounier in the early 20th century, and took 40 years to complete, with its final dedication taking place in 1978.
Notable for its ceiling mosaics, this massive cathedral is the third largest church in Brazil, with a total capacity of over 5,000 worshippers.
Other Attractions in Fortaleza
The one attraction that Fortaleza is best known for are the quality of its beaches located within and close by to its the city center. While the urban beaches are acceptable enough, two of the best strips of sand can be found within a short day trip of its downtown core.
First on your list should be Morro Branco, which is held in high regard for the beauty of the cliffs that back this popular beach.
The cliffs and the dunes found here are composed of varying shades of colored rock and sand, adding to the visually stunning sights that you will see during the day that you spend out here.
Looking for a place that has more of a fishing village feel? If so, then spending a day at Praia de Cumbuco will be more up your alley.
In addition to the town itself, which makes for a charming walk, the chalk-white sands that you will find here will grant you the beach day that you always envisioned having when you first dreamt up a trip to Brazil.
Adventure sport fans will love this place too, as the sand hills located nearby are perfect for dune buggy riding, and the high winds that rip off the coast on a consistent basis make this place perfect for kite surfers and windsurfers.
Travelers that aren’t looking for a day at the beach will still have a compelling day trip to go on, as a journey to the Cachaca Museum an hour inland from Fortaleza will get you acquainted with Brazil’s signature alcohol.
Created from sugarcane, this institution will show you how Cachaca is distilled, and as you might suspect, the end of the tour comes with a series of complimentary cocktails made from this sweet but potent drink.