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Salvador, Brazil

Arriving into Salvador on a late night flight from Rio, we caught a taxi into our hostel accommodation in the swanky suburb of Barra. This turned out to be a great choice for us, as it is one of the safest areas of salvador.

Barra is a beachside suburb at the head of the bay of Salvador. Our quest to find warmer water was successful!!! Yay. Needless to say we were very happy with that. The water was like a warm bath and the coastline is among the most beautiful in the world.

Most of the guide books that we read said to devote a good week exploring the Pelourinho area(historical centre) because it is really interesting. We found that an afternoon was enough!! Unfortunately, we got harrassed a bit by two fellas. At first, one of them came up to us to 'offer' his guiding services. He clearly wasn't a guide, so we politely declined. He then got quite aggressive with us. Not really nice, so we walked away. Within five minutes another guy came up to us offering his services once more. Well, he started telling his life story and then when he asked for money off us, we declined, then he again got aggressive. This was all in front of the police mind you!! So we decided that it wasn't too safe an area for us.

The historical centre wasn't that interesting anyway. We read that up until only 10 or so years ago, it was neglected and was completely run down and very unsafe. So basically most of the buildings are in bad repair and not that nice to look at. the biggest single attraction is an art deco elevator that links the upper and lower city!! That should give you an idea.

As we didn't feel that safe, we decided not to explore the nightlife , unfortunately, which salvador is apparently renowned for. We did however sample a lot of the street side food stores or Bainas. These are run by large ladies who wear all white. The main staple of the food is seafood and a shrimp paste made with a local grain. It is really good and cheap.

Our next stop was to go to some islands for our half time break. We decided on Morro de Sao Paulo and another island called Biopeba. Whilst here we really discovered the delights of Bahian food. Some typical traditional dishes are Moqueca (a seafood stew), Bobo ( a seafood stew with coconut and coriander, not too dissimilar to a Thai green curry without the curry!) and plenty of fresh grilled fish. The fruit is some of the best we´ve ever tasted, particularly the pinapple which was just so juicy and sweet. Mmmmm

Morro is one of the most famous islands in the state of Bahia. Most notably the second beach, as it's called, is one of Brazils top beaches. We didn't stay there though, as it is totally built up and the guide books warned of loud parties going on all night. We wanted a relaxing time and sleep!!!

So we decided on a boutique hotel on Fourth Beach. It was lovely and definitely a splurge for us. After our 5 nights there and eating as we did, we had put on all the weight we'd lost in Peru and Bolivia and also added a few extra kilo's!!! It was totally relaxing, with a long beach (about 5km's) and we were pretty much by ourselves most of the time! Paradise. Our bungalow had its own private jacuzzi which was fantastic.

After our nights there, we went to Boipeba and stayed in a lovely guesthouse run by two American brothers. It was about half the cost of the other place, but simply lovely as well.

We did some beautiful long walks, discovering little secluded coves and just reading a lot, sunbaking and of course swimming. Again, the food was amazing.

One advantage to Brazil, on top of everthing else, is that the flip flops (Havaina brand) are made here, so therefore very cheap. We have now got a pretty good collection going on.

Essentially, our time in Bahia was lovely and now we are completely relaxed and ready for the second half of our trip. Bring it on...

Till next time.
C and C x

permalink written by  chrishoorweg on October 18, 2007 from Salvador, Brazil
from the travel blog: and one last trip before we come home.........?
tagged Salvador

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