Things to do in Bahia State
Arrange a visit through your hotel or through Singtur, which has guides for both city and candomblé tours.
Among the diapers and canned hearts of palm are dozens of Havaianas at only $6 a pair (a fourth of the cost on the Quadrado).
The famous bar serves up a vast selection of cachaças and other local, traditional drinks.
Espelho is one of Bahia’s loveliest beaches, a vivid collage of blue water, creamy yellow sand, red cliffs, and lush green forest. Driftwood and coconuts wash up with the tide. Rivers and streams emerge from nowhere to snake into the sea.
The museum hold an extensive collection of crafts that trace the African tradition in Brazil. The structure of the museum was once Brazil’s first School of Medicine.
Originally founded in 1636, this church was rebuilt in Neoclassical style in 1828.
The seventeenth-century church combines Neoclassical interiors with Baroque and Rococo carvings located in the sacristy.
This sultry samba club has nightly live music.
The second-oldest church in Brazil was built by Portuguese settlers in 1586. Its defiantly plain façade—broken by a door, a window, and a wooden cross—is a fitting image for this place of uncomplicated pleasures.
Rent a car at the airport—it’s an hour to Trancoso—or hire a driver ($113) through Mangue Alto Turismo. Owner Henrique Costa speaks fluent English and knows the region well.
João Calazans, a.k.a. Calá, was an original Trancoso biribando. His ceramics, shown at his studio on the Quadrado, are among the best in town.
Texas-based HomeAway lists 30 properties along the coconut grove–lined coast, and its "rent with confidence" guarantee refunds unsatisfied guests up to $5,000 per booking.
Run by the Pousada Etnia, this shop has Osklen bikinis and swim trunks; colorful tops and dresses from Rio’s Cantão label; and a good selection of hats and handbags.
Book your visit to the Candomblé ceremonies through Singtur, which has guides for city tours as well.