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One of the largest and most arid of Brazil’s states, Ceará is also blessed with one of the country’s most alluring coastlines; no mean feat in a country with some 8,000 km (5,000 miles) of beaches. Most visitors first encounter the urban beaches of Fortaleza — the vibrant, modern, over-developed capital — where mega-barracas that function like private clubhouses serve up endless plates of crab against a backdrop of forró music. Once you’ve spent a couple of days exploring and/or partying in Fortaleza, hit the road. The best beaches lie farther afield, in secluded fishing villages as well as hip hang-outs such as Canoa Quebrada and ...

One of the largest and most arid of Brazil’s states, Ceará is also blessed with one of the country’s most alluring coastlines; no mean feat in a country with some 8,000 km (5,000 miles) of beaches. Most visitors first encounter the urban beaches of Fortaleza — the vibrant, modern, over-developed capital — where mega-barracas that function like private clubhouses serve up endless plates of crab against a backdrop of forró music. Once you’ve spent a couple of days exploring and/or partying in Fortaleza, hit the road. The best beaches lie farther afield, in secluded fishing villages as well as hip hang-outs such as Canoa Quebrada and Jericoacoara, whose laid-back vibe and excellent surfing conditions draw a mellow international crowd, some of whom never leave.

Unlike other Brazilian beaches, Ceará’s are stark and striking: the gleaming white sand is lapped by turquoise waters and backed by both dramatic red cliffs and gigantic dunes – ideal for dune-buggying, tobogganing, or watching the sun set.

Michael Sommers
About the Expert

Michael Sommers is the author of Moon Brazil and Moon Rio, as well as the blog Thrill of Brazil. He has been living in Salvador, Brazil since 1999.

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Michael Sommers for Triporati

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Now Happening in Ceará

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Eastern South America
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Currency: real
  • Research: Wikitravel | Wikipedia
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Year-round, though expect some rain March-May. Summer, coinciding with high season, is particularly hot.