|Bahia, Land of Happiness!
Located on the northeastern coast of Brazil, the “Golden
City” of Salvador, capital of the state of Bahia and
Brazil’s first capital, is a beautiful city of narrow
streets, colonial palaces and homes with colorful façades.
A magic and sensual world all its own, this is indeed one
of Brazil’s most privileged cities, with contagious
tropical atmosphere, friendly people, and rich cultural heritage.
The African influence is spread throughout Bahian culture.
It is apparent in the regional food, which uses ingredients
like palm oil, coconut milk and sea food to make such creations
as vatapá, acarajé, caruru, abará and
many other mouth watering dishes. Bahia is the home of candomblé,
a mystical religion based on a voodoo blend of African rituals
and Catholicism. An enchanting city where the perfume of the
old world still lingers on, in the spices of imaginative foods,
their original recipes rooted across the waters in Africa
and the rich baroque and colonial architecture, well preserved
through the centuries.
Founded in 1549, on the highest point overlooking the large
and beautiful All Saints Bay, Salvador is divided into two
parts. The “Lower City” at sea level, with the
old port and commercial district, where visitors can find
a complete and varied assortment of Brazilian arts and crafts
at the Mercado Modelo, and the “Upper City” which
can be reached by stone steps, alleyways or the famous landmark
Lacerda Elevator. This part of the city contains the old government
buildings, the residential districts, museum, churches and
much of the newer architecture. An impression of the colonial
period can still be gained through the elaborate churches,
homes, and remains, such as “Pelourinho” –
just recently restored by the state government and declared
by UNESCO as the most important colonial architecture in the
Americas. Amongst Salvador’s baroque churches, no less
than 365 of them, visitors will find of special interest the
Bonfim Church, the most popular in all Brazil and the São
Francisco Chapel, whose interior is literally covered with
tons of gold. Afro-Brazilian religious cults are widespread
throughout Bahia, particularly “Candomblé”,
whose gods (known as ‘orixás’), are identified
with saints of the Roman Catholic Church.
The sun and sea breeze keep Salvador’s yearly average
temperature at 80º F, and along the 45 miles of city
coastline visitors have a great choice of deluxe hotels and
gorgeous beach resorts located in wide, peaceful, stainless
white beaches, surrounded by towering coconut trees. In Bahia,
summer is eternal and time just lingers by in the most relaxed
and festive moods to be found anywhere... No wonder Salvador
is known as the “Land of Happiness!”
For more information about Salvador, its
highlights, tours and a complete list of hotels, please send
us an e-mail
telling us of your specific interests.