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WARNING - FORTALEZA/BRAZIL

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean WARNING - FORTALEZA/BRAZIL

1. Posted by guiny (Respected Member, 143 posts) 16 Aug '08 06:18

I would definitely advise against going to FORTALEZA - Brazil.
Last night I saw on TV several churches closed their doors because during worship people are being robbed.
I have been there with my husband this year and on the same day, in daylight with policemen on the street we were robbed and my husband was attacked. The policemen watched and did nothing to help us and on the same occasion, another couple were attacked a few minutes later in front of our hotel - a Five Star - two ladies were robbed one after the other.
The police are extremely lazy and it seems on Sunday they refuse to work.
They blame the government. I say it was not the government who was there attacking people, it honestly seems they work together with the thieves.
Fortaleza lives on the tourism. I say it lives on robbing tourists.
Fortaleza is such a beautiful place in appearance that it is easy to get deceived by how safe you really are. For five days we walked around day or night, happily and unaware that thieves were watching us awaiting Sunday for their chance to rob us, when they know too well that the police won't do anything.
Be aware that the thieves have friends cycling or walking up and down the tourism areas looking out for potential victims and then reporting it to the thieves to go and steal from them. And if you give chase they have groups of friends in various places around the beach that are a safety net for them to run through and the group will stop you and attack you and even try to steal any remaining belongings that you have.
If people stop going to Fortaleza, whose economy is based on tourism, the authorities will have to do something about the violence. By the way, the most dangerous place in Fortaleza on a Sunday is the most expensive and beautiful Avenue Beira Mar, where you see police all over the place and top hotels. Just remember on a Sunday the police won't do anything for you.
Ah, and they only attack tourists and in the city of Belem the situation is just the same.

2. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator, 5555 posts) 16 Aug '08 09:50

O, common, this is the second time I see the exact same text, the other in the 'dangerous country' topic.

Only because you had some negative experience, while 95% of the other might find it ok.
Because of this paranoia countries like Colombia or Syria are more avoided than they should be.

I met dozens of people travelling to Fortaleza or Belem, no problems.

3. Posted by guiny (Respected Member, 143 posts) 16 Aug '08 10:08

My intention with that post is making people aware of what to expect in Fortaleza. There have been several incidents there not just one or a case of bad luck. It is the rule not the exception. Fortaleza lives on the Tourism. If they start to loose money the authorities will do something about the criminality like happened in Natal. People have to be aware of what to expect. I chosen Fortaleza because I heard it is a beautfiful place and the weather is always good. Indeed it is, but the price to pay for its beauty is quite high.
It is common knowledge in Fortaleza that the Police won't do anything for you on a Sunday, unfortunatelly I had to need the police to learn that.
I forgot to mention that according to the hotel staff it has been getting worse in the last four years. The authorities must do something.

[ Edit: Edited on Aug 16, 2008, at 11:02 AM by audry79 ]

4. Posted by guiny (Respected Member, 143 posts) 16 Aug '08 10:36

Quoting Utrecht

O, common, this is the second time I see the exact same text, the other in the 'dangerous country' topic.

Only because you had some negative experience, while 95% of the other might find it ok.
Because of this paranoia countries like Colombia or Syria are more avoided than they should be.

I met dozens of people travelling to Fortaleza or Belem, no problems.

By the way, Utrecht, I used to think the same as you and despite all the recommendations; "Don't go to Fortaleza", I went nevertheless, even though 95% of the people I know who had been there had bad experiences. I am not going to Belem to prove anyone wrong.

5. Posted by Isadora (Moderator, 13924 posts) 16 Aug '08 10:55

Quoting Utrecht

O, common, this is the second time I see the exact same text, the other in the 'dangerous country' topic.

The response in the "Most Dangerous Country in the World?" thread has now been removed as it was a duplicate of this - as Michael has pointed out. Due to Forum Rules pertaining to duplicate postings, one had to go. I have chosen to let this thread stay.

Thanks for the comment, Michael. I knew I had just read the post and was a duplicate. Just couldn't remember exactly where the other post was and thought it had already been removed.
Isa now returns this thread to it's originally scheduled topic...

6. Posted by guiny (Respected Member, 143 posts) 17 Aug '08 06:32

Thank you and I am sorry. I only later realised I should start a new thread for this subject.
Honestly, I regret we did not go to Gramado as we only had heard good things about the place. We could had been robbed there as actually we could had been robbed anywhere in the world, but it does not happen as frequently and right in front of the police as it happens in Fortaleza.
About Sunday, we and other people from our hotel who were robbed in the very same day, were told by the hotel staff that Avenida Beira Mar is usually a crime area on sundays because the police don't seem very willing to work - apparentely they are not well paid for that - the criminals concentrate on Avenida Beira Mar which is the most expensive of Fortaleza and where all the tops hotels are concentrated, and attack all the tourists they possibly can.
After I heard they robbed the necklace of a minister who were walking down Avenida Beira Mar even with a body guard and that the churches closed their doors because now the criminals attack people in the churches I am not giving Fortaleza a second chance.
Some people might think I am exaggerating but I am sure I am not. Try to imagine the situation; your spouse being attacked by a bunch of criminals on daylight - about 13h00 - in front of a lot of people in a place regarded as safe - we did felt safe till that moment - and a couple of policemen watching everything and doing nothing while you scream for help. If it was not for another tourist who jumped in to help, my husband could had been seriously hurt. The matter was still worse. We went to talk to the policemen and they told us to go to a police station nearby, that's all they could do. The criminals? They were all on the beach, they did not run or anything because they knew nothing would happen to them. When we arrived at the police station they refused to take our complaint because we were tourists and we were supposed to go to the 'Tourist Police Station' we went to the place, and when we arrived there they told us to come back to the first police station we had been because they did not have a computer working, we came back to the first police station and after many complaints they agreed to write a report so at least we could claim the money from the insurance.

7. Posted by guiny (Respected Member, 143 posts) 18 Aug '08 18:46

Quoting Utrecht

O, common, this is the second time I see the exact same text, the other in the 'dangerous country' topic.

Only because you had some negative experience, while 95% of the other might find it ok.
Because of this paranoia countries like Colombia or Syria are more avoided than they should be.

I met dozens of people travelling to Fortaleza or Belem, no problems.

It was not a bad experience, it is happening all the time for quite a while now. I did not take it serious when I went to Fortaleza, now I do. I am Brazilian and I am in Brazil right now, I watch the news and as I local I know what is happening. We had a similar situation in Rio de Janeiro about some years ago. They would identify the tourists and in a gang attack them in front of everybody and no one would take any action against it. It is better now because the government took action because of the Pan American Games. Funny enough, today on TV news we were told that they robbed the vice-governor of Ceara in Fortaleza at Avenida Beira Mar. Maybe now they will take action.

Post 8 was removed by a moderator
9. Posted by silent peace (First Time Poster, 1 posts) 19 Jun '13 18:21

The same happens in New York, Chicago, and many other cities in the US, or in Europe, and around the world. You just need to know where NOT to go, and how NOT to act (don't wear jewlery, don't snob the poor, don't flash around dollars, etc).

10. Posted by Cyberia (Travel Guru, 1747 posts) 20 Jun '13 13:43

Brazil can be a violent place and places like Fortaleza and Sao Paulo can be very violent. I would not visit either place.

http://www.numbeo.com/crime/city_result.jsp?country=Brazil&city=Fortaleza

You can't beat hearsay to win an argument as in: "I met dozens of people travelling to Fortaleza or Belem, no problems."

It is often a matter of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but there are places it is sometimes best to avoid, like Fortaleza.

In America people can blend in with the "locals" so probably will not have any trouble unless they ask for it. But unless you are well tanned, you might as well have a "tourist" notice pinned to your back in Brazil. Not speaking the language fluently points you out as well.