Practical Information in Fortaleza

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Using the Public Transportation System in Fortaleza

Fortaleza is not only one of the most populated cities in Brazil, but also one of the cities with the highest population density in the country . Traffic can be really heavy in Fortaleza, especially during the morning, lunch hour and evening times. Even though the public transportation system in Fortaleza (mainly the bus and rail) allows you to escape the heavy car traffic, there are a couple of things to know when riding the bus and rail.

When riding the bus, you should avoid wearing or carrying anything that draws attention to you. Do not wear flashy jewelry or expensive watches. During rush hours, the buses can get really crowded and the Brazilians are okay with little personal space. If you require a lot of personal space, avoid the bus during rush hour. When riding the rail, be aware that while it's great for traveling long distances, it's not so good for getting around the city. Also, the rail does not cover most of the eastern region of Fortaleza.

Planning Your Trip to Fortaleza

The two busiest times of the year for Fortaleza are during the Brazilian summer time, and the North American and European summer time. Try to book your flight and hotel accommodation at least a month in advance during those periods. The four days of Carnival are extremely busy for hotels in Fortaleza and rooms go fast, so you will need to make your reservation at least 2 months in advance for those 4 days. Another important thing to consider when planning your trip to Fortaleza is the weather. During the months of January through June, Fortaleza is very humid and rainy. This rainy season is uncomfortable for small children and persons with high blood pressure or respiratory diseases.

Traveling on a Budget

Young travelers to Fortaleza should look into getting a membership card from Hosteling International (HI). Even though there is not a HI hostel in Fortaleza, holders of the HI membership card can still enjoy plenty of discounts at restaurants, bars and shops. Holders of the HI membership card should look into visiting the nearest HI hostel in the city of Caucaia, about a 4 hour drive away from Fortaleza. Taking a day trip to the city of Caucaia is a good idea because it's full of museums, and the hostel is located right on the historic center of the city.
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