The town of Beberibe (www.beberibe.com.br), 85 kilometers (53 miles) from Fortaleza, is known for the spectacular Praia de Morro Branco. Aside from its great beach, Morro Branco is famed for the Labirinto das Falesias, a series of “labyrinths” formed by fissures in the dune-shaped cliffs behind the beach. For a R$5 contribution, local guides will lead you through the maze.
You’ll be duly astonished by the colored sands that range from creamy whites and fleshy pinks to oranges, yellows, russets, and purples. The wide array of tonalities inspires the local production of glass bottles containing scenes “painted” with colored sand. These can be kitschy, but quite fascinating as well.
While Morro Branco is a sophisticated hub, replete with bars and restaurants, the nearby beach of Praia das Fontes, is much more tranquil. The “fontes” in its name refer to the fresh water springs that bubble up from the red rock cliffs on the beach. Popular activities on both beaches include dune buggy rides, jangada trips, and kitesurfing.
Accommodations and Food
For lunch, tuck into grilled lobster, peixada cearense, or carne-de-sol at the restaurant belonging to the Hotel das Falésias (Av. Assis Moreira 314, Praia das Fontes, tel. 85/3327-3052, www.hotelfalesias.com.br, R$18–24). Perched on the edge of a cliff, it offers stunning views. Should you want to spend the night, the spacious though fairly basic double rooms cost R$120.
Getting to Beberibe
Buses operated by São Benedito (tel. 85/ 3272-1232, www.saobenedito-ce.com.br) depart at regular intervals from Fortaleza’s central rodoviária. By car, follow the CE-040 coastal highway.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition