Fortaleza.

Tips for your trips. Tourist information. Official websites.

Fortaleza (map) is the state capital of *Ceará, located in Northeastern Brazil. It is one of the largest cities in Brazil and certainly one of the most vibrant. The city is perhaps the most popular domestic package tour destination, and Europeans are following suit.

Most tourists will not go more than 5 blocks from the sea, except for the airport and bus station, and perhaps a shopping mall.  Section of Beira Mar (map) (literally Sea Side) is by far the most attractive part of the city, with police stands and patrols making it fairly safe around the clock, although rather deserted from midnight to dawn.

Even though the police are working hard to make Fortaleza safer and the city is less dangerous than it used to be, it’s still one of Brazil’s most dangerous cities. The tourist zone around Beira Mar is relatively safe, thanks to a constant police presence.

Quite an effort has been put into restoring colonial architecture over the last years. Still there is no area that is completely “clean”, but the stretch from the beachfront of Praia de Iracema, via Dragão do Mar and to Praça do Ferreira is steadily improving and worth a walk.

These districts are probably the most interesting for visitors:

  • Centro (map) — downtown and its Praça do Ferreira (map) is full of shops and restaurants.
  • Praia de Iracema (map) — just northeast of downtown. Popular among travelers, this district features affordable accommodation and lively nightlife.
  • Praia do Futuro (map) — far east (8 km) of downtown, it’s the best beach in Fortaleza. On the downside the sea can be rough here and the water is often polluted by oil.
  • Mucuripe — the commercial port of Fortaleza.

Theatro José de Alencar (map). A theater on the south side of the eponymous square. The architectural landmark of the city, and also declared a National Historic Landmark (finished in 1912).

Metropolitan Cathedral of Fortaleza (Igreja da Sé, map). Its sooty façade gives the cathedral a somewhat brutal look. But it still has nice mosaics.

Mercado dos Pinhões (2 blocks inland from the shops at Rua Monsenhor Tabosa, map). This former meat market was imported piece by piece from Europe and set up in 1897. Refurbished and now used as a handicrafts fair with a variety of cultural events five days a week.

Dragão do Mar (map). The square at Rua Dragão do Mar is culturally a very lively place. Several artisans are selling their work there, musicians are performing and there are several bars and restaurants with international cuisine as well as night clubs of different styles.

There are handicraft shops all around the city, but the best places to go are the Feirinha da Beira Mar (Beach front fair, daily about 16:00 – 22:00, map) and the Mercado Central (near the cathedral, map).

With a tropical climate, the weather is always sunny year-round, but never extremely hot. The rainy season occurs in Fortaleza between February and May. In the driest months, between July and December, the winds are stronger and lessen the heat, rainfall practically stop and these are the most favorable months for windsurfers.

 

Public transport.

Information about all types of public transport.

Metrofor (subway).

Guichê Virtual is an online platform that allows you to search and book bus tickets for various destinations in Brazil. It covers a wide range of bus companies and provides a user-friendly interface for planning your bus travels.

The bus schedule for the urban passenger transport service in large and small cities can be consulted on the website ⇒ Horario de Onibus

BUS: Rodoviária João Tomé (map) – The main bus station has buses to most all of the country, often via connections. Expresso Guanabara has the most extensive network from here. Buses to neighbouring towns, within some 100 km, often leave from the train station in the centre.

Brazil Bus Travel – specializes in bus travel in Brazil. Green Toad Bus – knows that booking local transport and activities around South America can be challenging and confusing at times. Busca Ônibus is a useful resource for finding bus schedules.

TRAIN: The Companhia Brasileira de Trens Urbanos (CBTU) is the official website of the Brazilian Urban Trains Company. + vale.com / Serra Verde Express

AIRPORT: Pinto Martins International Airport. There is an urban bus 404 Aeroporto/Benfica which runs frequently between the airport and the center, where you can find buses to virtually anywhere in Fortaleza (not recommended at night). Most all airports with regular passenger traffic are operated by the federal – Infraero.

FERRY: Amazon Explorers is a tour operator specializing in boat trips and river transport in the Amazon region. Paraty Tours is a tourism company in Paraty, a coastal town in Rio de Janeiro state. + CCR Barcas (Rio de Janeiro) • Internacional Marítima (Bahia).

Best of Fortaleza – Brazil’s Miami | TRAVEL GUIDE & TOP BEACHES.

Travel guide for a weekend in Fortaleza, backpacking on a budget. Which are the most beautiful beaches – and which is the best beach? This budget travel guide shows you what to see in “Brazil’s Miami” for 2 days. Where to go and what to do – and how to get to Fortaleza from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Where to stay, the best clubs and nightlife of Fortaleza 2023. Featuring: Praia do Futuro, Cumbuco, Praia de Iracema, Beira Mar, Meireles and much more.

video source: Swedish Gringo / youtube.com /

Useful websites.

Links to additional resources with useful information for planning your trip.

VISAS & IMMIGRATION.

Visas are required for foreigners to enter and stay in the Brazilian territory for any period of time. Special Visa Categories.

Eventbrite.

Eventbrite is a platform that allows you to discover and book tickets for a wide range of events happening in Brazil.

Brazil Bus Travel.

Brazil Bus Travel is a website that specializes in bus travel in Brazil. Search for bus routes, schedules, fares, and book tickets online.

Currency Conversion: Websites like XE (www.xe.com) or OANDA (www.oanda.com) provide real-time currency exchange rates, allowing you to convert your home currency to Brazilian Real (BRL) and vice versa.

Brazil SIM Card: Upon arriving in Brazil, you may consider getting a local SIM card for your mobile phone to have reliable data connectivity. Some popular providers include Claro (www.claro.com.br), Vivo (www.vivo.com.br), and TIM (www.tim.com.br). You can check their websites for available plans, coverage, and instructions on purchasing and activating SIM cards.

The Rio Times is an English-language news website that covers news, culture, events, and tourism-related information primarily focusing on Rio de Janeiro. It provides a valuable resource for international tourists visiting Rio and wanting to stay informed about local news and events.

Eventbrite is a platform that allows you to discover and book tickets for a wide range of events happening in Brazil, including concerts, festivals, exhibitions, sports events, and cultural performances. It can help you find and participate in local events during your visit.