The first stop of our trip was Salvador!
It’s such a historic city, with an incredible African influence and a mixture of cultures that makes it vibrant and alive. It’s also one of the three most important Carnavals cities of Brazil!
The street above was where scenes of Michael Jackson’s video clip ‘They Don’t Care About Us’. You know, this one. There were scenes filmed in Rio as well as Salvador, but apparently it can be a sensitive subject as Salvador doesn’t get enough credit for it!
This lift takes you down to the lower city. It cost 15 centavos (dirt cheap) and is the quickest way to get down!
The lower city has many abandoned buildings, as the residents have moved closer to the airport. As a result, those buildings resemble ghost towers and some even have plants growing in them!
During the day, take a walking tour around the Pelourinho and see all it’s historic architecture. Trek to the Igreja do Bonfim and tie a Bonfim ribbon around your wrist, making three wishes with three knots. Go into the Mercado Modelo and walk around, buy some goodies for loved ones back home (or for yourself). If you decide to get a guide, make sure he’s accredited and agree on a price.
At night, head to the Rio Vermelho neighbourhood. Have dinner at the Casa de Tereza restaurant, and make sure to come back another night to have an acarajé at the Acarajé da Dinha stand. There are also many shows you can go to, from Olodum to bale to capoeira. Pick your favourite and dive in.
Eat moqueca, bobó de camarão, acarajé, abará, and cocada (but be ready for an intense sugar rush with the last one). Another good restaurant is Maria Mata Mouro, which has an outdoor garden.
This is the typical outfit of the Baiana.
In order to be considered a legitimate acarajé maker, the woman must don this outfit. Acarajé is a dough, made with beans, salt, onions and then fried in azeite de dendê and served with prawns, vatapá, and spicy pepper.
It is a staple of Bahia. Usually locals will pick one up on their way home after a days work.
Salvador is not the safest of cities, so try and be a bit cautious while walking around at night, especially if you’re alone.
Sit back and enjoy the colours of this city! It won’t disappoint.