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2012 Jan by David Sturdevant
My wife and I were in Ceara for an 8 day/7night trip from Sao Paulo. We stayed at the Mareiro Hotel in the middle of the Beira Mar section of Fortaleza. The Mareiro isn't the most luxurious hotel in the area, but is comfortable and reasonably priced. The daily 'cafe de manha' (breakfast) buffet at the hotel is wonderful, with fresh fruits, juices, breads, omelettes, etc. The hotel is centrally located, within easy walking distance of many nice restaurants and shops. Every evening the beach sidewalk turns into a street-market type venue, with kiosks erected, offering locally made souvenirs such as T-shirts, wood carvings and other handi-crafts, leather goods, cashews,etc.|
We took several day-trips via tour bus to other nearby locales, namely Cumbuco, Morro Branco and Canoa Quebrada. The high-light of many of the beach areas are (at extra cost) dune buggy rides over the sand dunes and along the beaches (local drivers are mandatory). Jangadas (flat-bottomed sailing boats used by the locals for fishing) rides are also offered for rental.
Cumbuco's buggy rides were the most thrilling and adventurous, with steep ascents and descents. In the middle of the ride we stopped at a "Ski-bunda" hill, where you slide down a steep hill, sitting on a waxed wooden board, hoping to glide all the way down the dune into a refreshing fresh-water lagoon. Falling off (until you get the hang of it) is half the fun. Cumbuco Beach is also well known by kite-boarders for its perfect combinaton of wind and wave conditons, in fact international tournaments are held here annually.
The Morro Branco area is known for its beautifully colored sand and an area known as "Labirinto das Falesias" and is frequently used as a picturesque setting in Brazilian novellas and movies. Erosion over the years has carved a fascinating curving path from the dunes down to the beach, through the colorful sand. Once you reach the beach you climb onto your buggy for a ride along the surf.
Canoa Quebrada is also another beautful beach area with interesting dunes and sand colors. Dune buggies also bring you down steep hills in this area.
The excursions are reasonably priced and the restaurants and refreshments offered are also surprisingly fairly priced.
Another area we wanted to visit is Jericoacoara but it was a 6 hr transit (each way) from Fortaleza. It has spectacular scenery as well (imagine Moab land formations located at the beach). It would be best to spend at least 3-4 days there so you don't waste (literally) half the day driving back and forth. Perhaps next time.
2007 Feb by Veikko Huhtala*
Fortaleza is one of the biggest cities in Brazil,|
population almost 3 million and of course it is capital oc Ceara province.
We booked our bus in Natal and in Fortaleza we stayed one night in small hotel near bus terminal.
A day before we had our long flight from Helsinki to Recife, so we needed some rest and relaxation.
After this night in hotel we early morning took bus which was going to Teresina in Piaui.
1986 Feb by Jorge Sanchez
SECOND JOURNEY IN 2016: Fortaleza is a city rich in history and beauty. Apart from the natives, Spaniards, Dutch and finally Portuguese have visited this place.
In downtown I visited a fortress where a guide gave me explanations for free. The name of the city, Fortaleza, derives from that fortress.
Then in front I had the local market, or rather a Shopping Mall, very alive, and on its ground floor was located the Tourist Office where I was allowed to use Internet. Then I saw the cathedral. And not far from there I crossed the historic center with a very pretty theater, and finally arrived to the beaches, lovely beaches.
I then understood why Fortaleza is one of the preferred places to rest during the holidays for the brazilians.
It took me about 40 minutes to reach downtown on foot from the bus station. Usually the bus terminals are far away from downtown and you are forced to catch a local bus to the center, or to walk over one hour. I use to walk until downtown if the distance is about 5 kilometers, but I take the bus when there are 10 kilometers distance or more.
In the beach Iracema I found a very nice statue that locals love it very much. It is a guardia, representing a heroine admired for her courage. The statue shows her with an bow in fighting position.
Back in downtown I visited the pretty looking theater José de Alencar, but only was allowed to stay on the ground floor. For the visit to the first floor and the rest of the premises I needed to buy a ticket, therefore I refused and was happy enough to watch the beauty of the ground floor.
I still visited other interesting places in that city of almost 3 millions inhabitants. Had lunch in a restaurant that offered food at 30 rials per kilo, and then I walked back to the bus station to travel during the night to my next destination: Natal, in the state of Rio Grande do Norte. |