Drink caipirinha in Salvador da Bahia


When I booked this trip, my whole purpose was to take a well-deserved break after a particularly hard semester in Law School (yes, it was several years ago, a bit before Instagram has invented… and yes, for those of you who didn’t know, I’m a lawyer). So, I added Salvador da Bahia to the list just thinking of drinking and sunbathing. Don’t get me wrong, I drank my weight in caipirinha. I’ll blame the heat. And the fact that they sell them literally in every corner! Anyway, where I was heading was to the fact that I discovered so much more.

I went on this trip with a classmate, and it was a last-minute decision. While we were studying for our last exams of the semester, we commented on how much we earned a week at the beach, where alcohol could stop every legal thought we might have. And just like that it was settled. Brazil was calling. We didn’t know much about the place and we had no time to do any research, so we decided on booking a pack –the sort with hotel and activities planned for you– something I almost never do. But this time it was absolutely worth it. Instead of spending 8 days doing nothing but drinking, we ended up going to amazing places I didn’t know existed. And, of course, drinking too!

Caipirinha in a coconut, Bahia, Brazil
Nothing like cachaça straight to the coconut!

Guarajuba was the perfect first day in the area. Only 50 km from Salvador, this former fishermen village has a different vibe than the city –more laid back and less crowded.  It was a time for sunbathing in a sandy beach, try some local food, and make our first Brazilian friends.

Guarajuba, Bahia, Brazil
Palm trees and sandy beaches, nothing says relax more than these!
Guarajuba, Bahia, Brazil
Our first Brazilian friend, the cutest boy in Bahia!

An extra 30 minutes north, in the beautiful Praia de Forte, you can visit the turtle sanctuary, Tamar project. It was created in 1980, with the main objective of protecting sea turtles from extinction on the Brazilian coastline. The centre collects the eggs, looks after them until they hatch, and then releases the baby turtles into the sea. If you go during January or February, you can see the turtles hatching ❤️

Proyecto Tamar, Praia do Forte, Bahia, Brazil
TAMAR: tartarugas marinhas (sea turtles in Portuguese)
Proyecto Tamar, Praia do Forte, Bahia, Brazil
❤️🐢
Proyecto Tamar, Praia do Forte, Bahia, Brazil
The centre protects other endanger species too

A quick boat ride across the Todos os Santos bay gets you to Ilha dos Frades. This mainly uninhabited island is a peaceful oasis. We met some locals and gave it a shot at learning capoeira. Needless to say, we failed miserably. Quick tip: don’t try it in the sand, it just makes it waaay more complicated.

Ilha Dos Frades, Bahia, Brazil
I couldn’t keep up, but I had so much fun!
Ilha Dos Frades, Bahia, Brazil
After (failed) capoeira lessons, it was time for peace and quiet

40 more minutes on a boat get you to Itaparica. Immediately you can feel it’s a bigger island. People are dancing and drinking everywhere. After a bit of exploring we found the Fonte da Bica, the ‘fountain of life’. Having that blessed water explains the energy of the island’s inhabitants. Although it could also be the caipirinhas. For sure one or the other.

Itaparica, Bahia, Brazil
The Brazilian youth fountain
Itaparica, Bahia, Brazil
These guys might be close to 100 years old, but they are from Itaparica 😂

Praia de Itapuã was the place to be in the 60’s. That brought composer Vinícius de Moraes to live here. Nowadays the calm sea, palm trees, and the fame brought by the writer of ‘Garota de Ipanema’ (the girl from Ipanema) still makes it a nice getaway from Salvador.

Olha que coisa mais linda, mais cheia de graça
É ela a menina que vem e que pasa
Num doce balanço caminho do mar.
Moça do corpo dourado, do sol de Ipanema
O seu balançado é mais que um poema
é a coisa mais linda que eu já vi passar.

Praia de Itapua, Bahia, Brazil
Lovely calm sea
Praia de Itapua, Bahia, Brazil
The whole place for ourselves. How nice is to travel off season!

But the best of the best was kept for last. My favorite spot in Bahia was Morro Saô Paulo.  This untamed nature heaven is a 2-3 hours boat ride from Salvador. It has 5 different beaches, becoming less and less touristy as you go. Beaches 4 and 5 are quiet and full of bright-colored fish. You can reach them in a couple of hours walk. It’s absolutely worth to walk with your feet in the warm Atlantic, taking in the views!
If you want even more peace, head to any other place in the Tinharé island. You’ll escape the tourist for sure. Or do like me and go off season 😊

Morro Saô Paulo, Bahia, Brazil
First impression, without setting a foot on the island, was that I’d love it!
Morro Saô Paulo, Bahia, Brazil
The water is this transparent! ❤️
Morro Saô Paulo, Bahia, Brazil
You´ll find a peaceful oasis as you go away from the first beaches

Salvador itself is a lovely, eclectic mix of cultures. In both people and architecture you can find a blend of Amerindians, Africans and Europeans. The fact that this was Brazil’s first colonial capital city only adds to it splendor.  
Get lost in the Old Town. Every narrow street has a hidden treasure. Walk around Pelourinho, a UNESCO Heritage Site where you’ll find colonial baroque Portuguese architecture from the 17th through the 19th centuries.
Don’t miss the views form the Lacerda Elevator. You’ll get a stunning panorama of the bay, and an aerial view of Mercado Modelo, a the most famous market of the city, located in an 1861 neoclassical building.

Lacerda elevator, Salvador da Bahia, Brazil
Lacerda elevator and the Todos os Santos bay
Mercado Modelo, Salvador da Bahia, Brazil
Mercado Modelo from Lacerda elevator
Salvador da Bahia, Brazil
Monument to the Caboclo, also called Monument of Two of July, it commemorates the independence of Bahia
Pelourinho, Salvador da Bahia, Brazil
Little cobblestone streets in the Old Town
Pelourinho, Salvador da Bahia, Brazil
Pelourinho, the most visited spot in Salvador

–> Was it worth a spot in the list?

I’m not a fan of destinations that are known because of their beaches, so I was a bit skeptical about how much I’d actually like it. But I really did! The mix of history, architecture, wildlife, relax and drinks (and then some more drinks) make Salvador an interesting and fun place that can keep you entertained for days on end.

30 thoughts on “Drink caipirinha in Salvador da Bahia”

    1. Exactly how I feel. I can sunbath for a day or two (if I have a good book), but after that my feet get itchy. Salvador is a great place to relax and have adventures!

  1. Wow what a stunning place! Unfortunately this destination is soooo far from me, but just like you I love when a place is not only known for their beaches, because I love the sea but after a week I get so bored and I need to do something else. Nice post, stunning pics, thanks for sharing x

    1. Thanks so much, Marina! ❤️ I feel the same way, that’s why in my list I’m combining all sorts of different activities… impossible to get board in any of these places!

  2. What a beautiful destination! I love exploring new places that have a great mix of culture, food, and relaxation. So I’ll have to add Salvador to my list.

    1. I’m so happy to hear that, Ayanna! The objective of the blog is to inspire ❤️ Let me know when you decide to go!

  3. My kids would love the turtle sanctuary! What I love about Salvador is that it looks like it is kid friendly. We are always trying to find kid friendly vacations.

    1. I’ve never thought about how kid friendly a destination was, but you have a great point, Salvador is perfect for a family vacation!

    1. That’s so lovely to hear, Heather! The whole objective of the blog is to inspire ❤️ Hope you get to go soon!!!

  4. It looks like you had a wonderful trip and your photos are beautiful! I’ve never been to Brazil but would love to go someday. The cobblestone streets look quaint.

    1. Thank you, Lori! I’m happy you enjoyed my pictures! ❤️ Hope you get to go to Brazil soon, the country is amazing!

  5. Great post! Thanks for all the details and inspiration about this destination. Love your photos! I’m subscribing to make sure I don’t miss any future post.

    1. Awww, thanks so much, Marie! What a lovely comment! ❤️ I’m posting constantly about past and present travels, and 2019 comes full of new destinations!

  6. Hi there! I simply wish to offer you a huge thumbs up for the excellent info you’ve got right here
    on this post. I’ll be coming back to your website for more soon.

    1. Thanks so much, Candida! I’m making sure to keep adding content as often as possible, so for sure you’ll find many more interesting stories to read ❤️✈️

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