Not far from the Mercado Central, this majestic cultural complex is an eccentric mix of curves, straight lines, and angular and flat roofs. What's inside is as diverse as the exterior. There's a planetarium as well as art museums with permanent exhibitions of Ceará's two most famous artists, Raimundo Cela and Antônio Bandeira. Another museum presents Ceará's cultural history, with exhibits of embroidery, paintings, prints, pottery, puppets, and musical instruments.
When you need a break, head for the center's romantic Santa Clara Café Orgânico, which serves a variety of cocktails made with coffee as well as little meat or vegetarian pies. There are also some great bars installed in the converted colonial houses that surround the complex. The center's bookstore has English-language titles as well as souvenirs and cards.