Fortaleza is the capital of Ceará, a State of Northeastern Brazil. The city lies at the mouth of the Pajeú River on a crescent-shaped indentation of the coastline. Fortaleza originated as a small village adjoining a Portuguese fort (built as a defense against Indian attacks). It took the name of Villa do Forte da Assumpção in 1654. In 1810 it became the capital of Ceará captaincy and in 1823 was given city status and became the provincial (later state) capital under the name of Fortaleza Nova de Bragança. The city has a modern appearance with wide avenues. Its harbour, long an open roadstead, has been protected and greatly improved by construction of a breakwater with port facilities at Mucuripe Point, 4 miles (6 km) to the east.With more than 30 km of beaches, the city offers various leisure options, such as museums, theaters, crafts, cuisine, in addition to an intense nightlife.
The triangular continent of South America stretches from north of the Equator almost down to the Antarctic Circle. It contains three very different landscapes: the Andes forming a backbone along the Pacific Ocean coast, desnse rainforests in the Amazon valley and Caribbean coast, and windswept grasslands near the cold, southern point of the continental landmass at Cape Horn.