19 Mar 2019 - 20 Mar 2019

2 guests - 1 room

Brazil’s Capital of Happiness earned its nickname from the lively atmosphere and street parties that the city is famous for. It’s also famous for being one of the oldest cities in the Americas, with buildings and monuments dating back to the 16th Century. Salvador is the birthplace of Afro-Brazilian culture, and this influences everything from the spicy cuisine to the quirky handicrafts. Salvador is one of the best places to see Capoeira, a mix between dance and martial arts. If you’re planning on staying in Salvador, it’s worth having a good understanding of the city’s layout. Salvador is separated by an 85m ridge into the Cidade Alta (High Town) and Cidade Baixa (Low Town). There’s an outdoor elevator connecting the two parts of the city, so you can leave your climbing gear at home.


Downtown Salvador is where you’ll find the hustle and bustle of daily life in Salvador. It’s where the hub of the city’s commercial activity is located, with most of the banks and offices located in the Comercio neighbourhood. The bus station on Avenida da Franca provides good transport links, and there’s a good variety of hotels too.


The Historical Centre of Salvador is a UNESCO World Heritage site, known for its colourful colonial buildings, baroque palaces, and 16th Century plazas. It’s just a short walk from Centro, and as well as historical buildings you’ll also find boutiques, museums, and restaurants. There are lots of cute little bars where you can sample the local firewater, cachaca.


This traditional neighbourhood in South of the city is a favourite tourist hotspot, with a concentration of hotels lining the beach shore. The neighbourhood is characterised by its beaches, particularly Porto do Barra which is a popular hangout for locals and tourists alike. The area has some great cafes and shops during the day, but really comes to life at night with busy restaurants and lively clubs. There are even some interesting historical sights, such as the city’s first fort the Santo Antonio da Barra which is now home to a museum and a restaurant.

Rio Vermelho

Popular with tourists and artistic locals such as singer Gal Costa, the Rio Vermelho neighbourhood has more than its fair share of restaurants, bars, and hotels. Rio Vermehlho is one of the best neighbourhoods for sampling the popular Bahia street food Acaraje, which was brought to Brazil by slaves. Each February the neighbourhood becomes crowded as people gather to celebrate The Festa da Yemenja, a huge festival where gifts are brought to the Mother of the Sea to ensure a good year of fishing.

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Member reviews (87)
Sabrina Gonçalves
Sabrina GonçalvesLos Angeles

If you go to Salvador stay near the beach Porto da Barra, has bars, shopping, bar lighthouse beach, with many inns and hotels, taking the Salvador Bus you can visit the historic city and other tourist spots.

Leigh Virkus
Leigh VirkusPittsford

Salvador is the capital of the state of Bahia, Brazil and is commonly called Salvador de Bahia. Since it was the center of the slave trade it is the the Afro center of Brazil. It has great architecture and produces the world's largest carnival.

Carl Koytzan
Carl KoytzanRenton

This is a beautiful city from a rustic point of view. When you enter the city as I did from the port, you will see a round building that is now used for merchants. This was the building used to store slaves before they were sold right out in front of this buiilding

Courtney Regan
Courtney ReganSan Francisco

Salvador, the first colonial capital of Brazil, is located in the state of Bahia, which is famous for some of the best beaches in the world. It’s also famous for the Afro-Brazilian culture; a result of the barrage of slaves shipped here in the 17th century, eventually claiming freedom in 1888. The city actually reminds me a lot of New Orleans: somewhat gritty, wonderfully colorful and bursting with music. We spent a day exploring the history of Salvador by starting at Mercado Modelo, where countless slaves first set foot in Brazil. After a quick walk through the Lower Town, we took Elevador Lacerda, which essentially dropped us in the middle of the historical center. We explored ornate churches and watched countless stages being set up for music festivals. (Keep in mind we were here just after Carnaval – the party really never stops.) We then lost ourselves in the colorful labyrinth of Pelourinho, beautiful alleys filled with cafes, bars and shops. Of course being in Bahia we had to spend a day at the beach so we headed to Porte de Barra, rented our chairs and plopped down. While we brought magazines and books, we really didn’t need them. First, caipirinhas, fried cheese, jewelry and massages were offered every few minutes. Then there were eclectic groups of friends and family applying oil and basking in the sun. There were even displays of capoeira, a Brazilian fighting style that looks more like dancing. But most importantly there was Footvolley. In this brilliant game players use their feet, chest and head to score points over a volleyball net. The sheer passion and talent of the players, as well as the hecklers, provided us with hours of entertainment. In our favorite part of Salvador, Rio Vermelho, we were lucky enough to meet several locals including Herbert, the self-proclaimed Frenchiest Brazilian ever. We peppered our new friend Dave, the manager of The Dubliner pub, with questions about the Portuguese language. We even engaged in lengthy political discussion with ex-pats and shared our love of San Francisco by singing Janis Joplin songs. While it’s true that the music here is constant, it’s the colorful people that truly are the heart and soul of this town.


The least expensive month is August, with an average of £28 per night. The most expensive month to stay in Salvador is February, with an average price of £42 per night.
The average price of a hotel in March last year was £32 per night. This is 2% less than the average nightly price of £33 seen over the previous 12 months.

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