Afternoons in Salvador

Salvador da Bahia Travel Blog

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Wooden carvings of the Orixas at the Afro-Brazilian Museum
In the afternoons and evenings we had free time and we found plenty of activities to fill it up. I would spend some time preparing for the next day's activities for my class. The earlier I got things done, the better because the beaches and nightlife of Salvador were very enticing. Most people spent a good amount of time at the beach- swimming, working on their tans, napping, kayaking, and socializing. I would often walk to the beach by myself and take different routes to explore the city. My favorite was walking along the Baia de Todos os Santos by Farol da Barra around sunset- very beautiful. I would meet up with the other volunteers at Porto da Barra, a crowded, umbrella filled beach on the bay.
It's popular with tourists and therefore popular with vendors.

There were guys who worked on the beach, setting up chairs and umbrellas and selling beverages. We had our "spot" and Tico was our guy. The fact that he spent his days in the sun definitely showed on his tan leathery skin. There were speculations that he actually lived on the beach and slept there at night. He greeted us with firm handshakes and he usually had a cigarette hanging out of the side of his mouth. I requested an umbrella from him often because the sun was very hot there and I don't really need a tan. He would periodically fill a watering can in the ocean and come around to pour cold water on his customers' feet. Something about this weirded me out and it was a bit shocking when you didn't see him coming.

I typically stay away crowded touristy beaches, but there was something loveable about Porto da Barra.
Largo do Pelourinho
It's crowded and lively but somehow serene at the same time. It's a great place for viewing sunsets. We would see the same locals there that would see in Pelourinho and we had to be wary of some of them, but it was fun getting to know them. It was a great place for people watching and meeting other travelers. Also, there are always jam sessions and people practicing capoeira.

My roommate Romy and I agreed that we would take time to visit the museums in Salvador. The first one we went to was the Museo Afro-Brasiliero in Pelourinho. I don't remember how much it cost, but it was pretty inexpensive and cheaper if you have a Student ID. The descriptions on the exhibits were all in Portuguese, but at the entrance they ask you what language you speak and give you a book with translations.
Capoeira in Pelourinho
The purpose of the museum is to show the history and journey of the Afro-Brazilian culture and the links between West Africans and the Afro-Brazilians. It was interesting, but many of the artifacts looked a lot like things I had seen before. I guess it's good starting point for those who are unfamiliar with the history of northeastern Brazil and its connection to West Africa. The highlight was a room in the back with huge beautifully carved wooden panels depicting the Candomble Orixas by the Bahian artist Carybe. The translation book had good descriptions of the Orixas to go along with the carvings.
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Wooden carvings of the Orixas at t…
Wooden carvings of the Orixas at …
Largo do Pelourinho
Largo do Pelourinho
Capoeira in Pelourinho
Capoeira in Pelourinho
Salvador da Bahia Sights & Attractions review
In Salvador you won't find huge modern museums like the ones you'll find in major US and European cities. There are several smaller museums with some … read entire review