The Jaguaribe River is the biggest attraction of Fortim in Ceará

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rio Jaguaribe em Fortim CE
Rio Jaguaribe CE

The Jaguaribe River is the biggest attraction of the municipality of Fortim which lies between Aracati and Beberibe, featuring its beautiful beaches.

On top of the Barra viewpoint in Fortim, you discover an unmissable view over the river, the fishermen’s boats crossing to the other side of the river.

The municipality of Fortim is located on the edge of the Jaguaribe River 118km from Fortaleza with access by CE-040.

For those who are going to visit the city of Fortim, one of the attractions of the region is to take a boat trip along the Jaguaribe River, the largest watercourse in the territory of Ceará, with 633 km in length, born in Tauá, south of the state, and ending in the Atlantic Ocean, where the city has the privilege of having the mouth of the Jaguaribe.

The Jaguaribe River has a series of channels, islands and a great variety of birds, fish and vegetation that gives a special touch to the already majestic local nature.

Mirante da Barra em Fortim
Mirante da Barra

The meeting of the river and the sea is a highlight of a trip to the coast of Ceará.

Tourists experience the mixture of fresh and salt water in the Jaguaribe River on a boat trip.

On the banks of the largest river in Ceará and on the edge of the beach.

In the town of Fortim, which is an hour and a half from Fortaleza, you can choose which water to have fun in.

Map of Tourism of the Coast of Ceará

Rio Jaguaribe é o maior atrativo de Fortim no Ceará

A tip is to start with a boat trip on the Jaguaribe River. This is where you see that fishing boats and water sports can share the same space.

As well as the summer mansions, next to this centenary church built facing the river, at a time when riches were transported by water.

Fortim no Ceará
Fortim no Ceará

At another point of the river the tour is through the mangrove, through the love canal. The exit is very close to the sea.

After traveling along the river, entering the mangrove and reaching the mouth, where the river meets the sea, tourists make a strategic stop to experience the mixture of fresh and salt water.

The tour can continue overland by buggy, which climbs to the lookout point at an old lighthouse and descends to the beach of the caves to see up close the sculptures made by the sea and the caves of crystalline water.

More surprises lie ahead in a forest of mandacarus trees. The typical plant of the sertão shows that it also serves as food on the beach.

The tour ends at the Maceió pier, where beach huts offer snacks such as stingray and shrimp pancakes. On the same beach you can stay in cozy inns.

Tour on the Jaguaribe River

The Jaguaribe River is the largest watercourse in Ceará, with a length of 633 km, rising in the south of the state, in the city of Tauá, and coming to flow into the Atlantic Ocean, on the coast of Fortim.

With many canals, islands and rich fauna and flora, river walks are almost mandatory for those visiting Fortim.

The route passes through mangroves, river islands and the famous Pedra do Chapéu, which forms a sandbank where you can enjoy a delicious stop for a freshwater bath.

On these tours it is also possible to see the luxurious summer houses of Barra do Fortim. As well as the church of Nossa Senhora do Amparo, built with the front facing the waters of the river.

Characteristics of the Jaquaribe River

Percurso do rio Jaguaribe CE
Course of the river Jaguaribe CE
The Jaguaribe River before the construction of Castanhão was known as the largest dry river in the world, as it was a seasonal river (type of river that during the rainy season presents a lot of water, but that can disappear completely during the dry season) and located in a state with a semi-arid climate, which does not favor the occurrence of rainfall, but it became perennial with the construction of the dam, which began to regulate the flow of water in the river.
The Jaguaribe is the largest river in the state and is of extreme importance to all Ceará, it occupies about 51.9% of the total area of the state, which is equivalent to approximately 75 669 km².
The headwaters of its sub-basins serve as the boundary between Ceará and the states of Piauí, Pernambuco, Paraíba and Rio Grande do Norte, it rises in the Serra da Joaninha at the Santiago lagoon in Tauá, almost on the border of Piauí and flows into the Atlantic Ocean in the municipality of Fortim. 
It is the largest watercourse in the territory of Ceará with a length of 633 km.
But this great river has not only economic importance for the state, it has a relevant historical-social side, because as in the history of the emergence of almost all civilizations in the world, settlements tend to arise near rivers or the sea and the Jaguaribe River has its banks inhabited since the beginning of the history of the State, because it allowed a more productive agriculture and a less thin cattle, making life easier for the people of Ceará.
In the past it was common to deforest the vegetation on the river bank (riparian forest) to plant in that region, but with the excessive deforestation of the vegetation that is intended to protect the river, more sediment (sand) enters the river, which gradually silts up and becomes increasingly shallow.
Due to this kind of attitude, nowadays some stretches of the river are no more than one meter deep.

City of Fortim in Ceará

Of the beaches on the east coast of Ceará, Fortim is one of the quietest and least hectic. The destination is located about 135 km from Fortaleza, on the banks of the Juaguaribe River, the largest periodic river in the world.

With privileged geography, the destination has distinct landscapes; with dunes, cliffs, cactus forests, mangroves and sea of almost always calm waters. But unexpectedly, one of its biggest attractions is the winds, which there, present perfect conditions for the practice of kitesurfing.

Tourism began to be explored in the region about 20 years ago, when French travelers discovered the quiet village and began to explore its natural beauty. Many of them, in fact, fell in love with the destination and chose Fortim as their permanent home. Thus, it is not difficult to hear the French accent when you are walking through the streets of the city.

Beaches in Fortim

Fortim has several beaches; the main ones are: Pontal de Maceio Beach, the most frequented, Canto da Barra Beach and Agulhas Beach,

One of the main attractions of the city is the Pontal de Maceió, six kilometers from the Center. The fishing village, with its colorful houses around the square, is an ideal place to enjoy the unspoiled landscape and disconnect from the world.

Pontal de Maceió

mapa de Fortim no Ceará
map of Fortim in Ceará

Pontal de Maceió, an authentic fishing village, still retains its authenticity and has managed to escape the development of tourism that has little respect for the environment. Its beautiful beach lives to the rhythm of the coming and going of the rafts bringing fish and lobsters from the high seas.

At low tide, walking along the beach towards the mouth of the river Jaguaribe, you can discover the natural caves carved out by the tide, the waves and the wind. On the other hand, in the direction of the river Pirangi and Parajuru, passing the village, a beautiful path will take you to the small Praia das Agulhas.

Pontal de Maceió em Fortim no Ceará

For the more sporty, a Kitesurf school has recently opened in the middle of the beach huts.

Pontal de Maceió has a tourist infrastructure that includes some restaurants, snack bars and bars in the pretty central square, a luxury hotel by the sea, some pousadas and beach huts serving delicious fish dishes, seafood and typical foods (see our Fortim restaurant page).
Canto da Barra

Located at the mouth of the Jaguaribe River and about 1,500 m from the mouth of the Jaguaribe River, Barra do Fortim Beach is a paradise still unknown to most tourists visiting the region.

Due to the flat water, constant wind and huge space, Canto da Barra is one of the best spots in Brazil for kitesurfing.

Praia das Agulhas

Just after the fishing village, in the west direction, towards the mouth of the Pirangi River, is the Praia das Agulhas Even more deserted and rustic than Pontal do Maceió, there are no tents or any tourist structure, just the almost always calm sea and an extensive strip of sand for you to walk.

To the east side, towards the Jaguaribe River, there are some activities such as hiking through the caves formed by the action of tides and winds. In addition to its geological beauty, these caves house natural pools that allow delicious refreshing baths.

Barra do Fortim and Canto da Barra

It is in the Barra do Fortim, on top of a cliff, that is the Barra do Fortim Lighthouse, a beautiful red structure that contrasts perfectly with the landscape of the beach.

 Farol da Barra do Fortim reina em cima de uma enorme falésia. Fortim (CE).
Barra do Fortim lighthouse reigns over a huge cliff. Fortim (CE)

The place is very beautiful and guarantees good photos with the intense blue-green of the sea in the background. In the late afternoon, it usually receives tourists who come looking for the sunset.

Canto da Barra is the last beach in the region and also the last stop on the route taken by buggies on local tours.

Church of Our Lady of Amparo

Church of Our Lady of Amparo in Fortim
Church of Our Lady of Amparo in Fortim

The interesting thing is that the Church of Nossa Senhora do Amparo was built facing the river, because at that time the village extended mainly on the riverbank.

With the growth of the city, the inhabitants began to build their houses behind the Catholic temple, which did not please the most devout faithful of Our Lady.

The solution, to prevent the village from no longer having the blessing of the patron saint, was to open doors at the back and build a small square. Since then, it is there that the faithful enter to attend the celebrations or through the doors behind the altar.

Buggy rides in Fortim

The local geography, rich in dunes, cliffs and wild beaches, undoubtedly calls for a buggy ride. Leaving Fortim, the vehicles cross the river on a ferry towards the dunes of the beaches of the so-called Costa do Sol do Nascente, almost reaching Rio Grande do Norte.

Shorter tours stop at Canoa Quebrada – a trendy destination with many beach huts, cliffs and dunes.

As gigantes falésias avermelhadas de Ponta Grossa
Ponta Grossa’s giant red cliffs

Those who want to keep the relaxed atmosphere of the beaches of Fortim can go to Praia de Redonda, about 50km away. The route passes by other beautiful beaches full of cliffs of the most diverse shades, dunes and natural pools.

Ponta Grossa is the last beach on this route. There, a magnificent 100-meter-high dune – considered the largest mobile dune in Ceará – frames the sea of blue waters, next to giant reddish cliffs. Like Fortim, Ponta Grossa is a place to disconnect. There is almost no movement on the beach and the few existing tents are hardly crowded.

Travel and Tourism Guide to Fortim in Ceará

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