Cumbuco, 35km from Fortaleza, has a long wide beach with soft sand, an expanse of dunes and a few lagoons that make it very popular for buggy rides and day tours from Fortaleza. It's fairly windy which makes it less than ideal for bathing – swimmers would do better to head to prettier and more sheltered places further along the coast – but for kitesurfers it's a top destination.

Praia de Cumbuco itself and the Lagoa da Barra do Cauipe, 10km west of the town, have some of Brazil's best kitesurfing conditions from July to February. The lagoon's perfect combination of strong winds and gentle waters means that it can get overcrowded at times. Gear rental and classes are available

Cumbuco is a very easy day trip from Fortaleza but has a range of hotels and pousadas (guesthouses) if you want to stay over. Empresa Vitória runs minibuses from Meireles in Fortaleza to Cumbuco (R$7.60, one hour). You can pick them up in front of Ideal Clube at 9am, 11:20am, 3:50pm and 6:20pm. They also run a more frequent bus service (R$5.75, one hour) from 6am to 10:45pm which runs along the length of Av Mister Hull from central Fortaleza.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Ceará attractions

1. Centro de Turismo

16.58 MILES

The Centro de Turismo, a converted 19th-century jail, houses a lot of craft stalls and a tourist information office. Upstairs, the Museu de Arte e Cultura…

2. Igreja da Sé

16.93 MILES

Fortaleza's neo-Gothic Catholic cathedral is the city's most important church.

4. Museu de Arte Contemporânea

17.12 MILES

This contemporary art museum is one of two museums that make up Fortaleza's excellent Centro Cultural Dragão do Mar and is well worth a wander.

5. Memorial da Cultura Cearense

17.18 MILES

Part of Fortaleza's excellent Centro Cultural Dragão do Mar, this museum hosts exhibits on Ceará's traditional way of life and culture. Temporary…

6. Praia do Meireles

18.6 MILES

This central beach has an attractive waterfront promenade with homey beer barracas (stalls) on the sand side and smart air-conditioned restaurants and…

7. Praia do Futuro

21.96 MILES

A clean length of soft sand stretching 5km along Fortaleza’s east-facing coast, this is easily the best city beach, though it's far from most…

8. Praia de Paracuru

24.55 MILES

Paracuru's beach is a narrow stretch of sand running the length of a long curving bay that is shaded in some parts by clumps of trees. It's not overly…