Club: Ceará SC & Fortaleza EC | Opening: 1973 | Capacity: 63,903 seats
History and description
Arena Castelão, originally called Estádio Governador Plácido Aderaldo Castelo, opened on 11 November 1973 with a match between Ceará and Fortaleza (0-0).
The stadium was built at the initiative of state governor Plácido Castelo, after whom the stadium got subsequently named. It soon got referred to as Castelão though, after the area it stands in.
Castelão initially consisted of one small continuous oval-shaped tier and large ramps at both sides. The stadium did not have cover yet and could hold about 70,000 fans.
In 1980, the second tier was extended over the entire stadium, and soon after an estimated 118,000 people attended an international between Brazil and Uruguay.
The stadium received cover in 2002 and subsequent renovations brought back capacity to about 60,000.
Not much later, Castelão got selected as one of the playing venues of the 2014 World Cup, and therefore required a more substantial redevelopment.
Works started early 2011 and involved the demolition and reconstruction of the bottom tier, the installation of a new roof, and the refurbishment of the rest of the stadium. The stadium officially reopened on 16 December 2012. At the same time it got renamed Arena Castelão.
During the 2014 World Cup, Arena Castelão hosted four first round group matches, a round of 16 match, and the quarter-final between Brazil and Colombia (2-1). The stadium was also one of the playing venues of the 2013 Confederations Cup.
(Photos of the present Arena Castelão below)
How to get to Arena Castelao
Arena Castelão is located in the south of the city of Fortaleza, about 10 kilometres from the Dragão do Mar area and nearby Iracema beach and a similar distance from the beaches in the east.
Fortaleza has recently opened a new metro, though it does not pass Castelão directly. Stop Parangaba is somewhat in the direction, and you can take a taxi from there or inquire about local buses.
From the centre take bus 666 to get to the stadium. Take the bus from the Rua Pedro I at the corner of the Rua Solon Pinheiro. Take the bus that goes to Jardim Castelão.
Fortaleza’s airport lies also toward the south, approximately 3.5 kilometres north of the stadium, and is therefore a reasonable taxi ride away.
Address: Avenida Alberto Craveiro s/n, Castelão, Fortaleza
Eat, drink, and sleep near Arena Castelao
The Arena Castelão is located in a not very appealing area, which is a mix of working-class basic residential housing and small business. There is therefore little reason to head to the stadium much before the start of the match, especially since central Fortaleza offers plenty of entertainment.
Most of the eating, drinking, and nightlife is located east of the centre in the Dragão do Mar and Iracema beach area, and running further east along the coast along Avenida Beira Mar up to the Mereiles area. If you prefer a quieter area, or beaches better suited for bathing or surfing, you may want to head to the eastern Praia do Futuro beaches.
However, if you make Fortaleza more than a quick stop-over, you will likely get more out of your stay if you choose a hotel in a more central and touristy area.
Tickets for Ceará matches can be bought online, or at various club stores including the centrally located ones at Shopping Iguatemi, Shopping Aldeota, and Shopping Camelo 2.
Tickets are usually also available at the ticket windows of Castelão on the day of the match.
Tickets typically can depend on the opponent, but expect to pay between R$ 30.00 and R$ 60.00 for a seat.
Tickets for Fortaleza matches can be bought online through Ingresso Facil, or at any of many sales points, typically club shops, including ones at Shopping Iguatemi, Shopping Benfica, Shopping Aldeote, and the Rua Pedro Borges 143 in the centre.
Tickets are generally also available at the ticket windows of Castelão on the day of the match.
Ticket prices typically range from R$ 30.00 for an upper-tier seat behind the goal to R$ 60.00 for a good seat at the main stand.