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Salvador & the Islands of Bahia

9 Days / 8 Nights or as many as you wish

This nine days in Bahia takes you to perhaps Brazil's most enchanting state, with endless white beaches, waving palms, tropical reefs and warm waters. Salvador de Bahia, is the heartbeat of Afro-Brazilian culture such as samba, capoeira and candomble. Morro de Sao Paulo are Boipeba are two island paradises of beaches, palm trees and crystal clear ocean waters.

This 9-day tour of Salvador, Morro de Sao Paulo and Boipeba offers the best of lazy island living in Bahia, perhaps the state that most people associate with a holiday in Brazil - the vibrant music and Afro-Brazilian culture of Salvador, the palm trees, reef and tropical waters of Morro de Sao Paulo on the island of Tinhare, and the neighbouring island of Boipeba. 

Beginning in Salvador, the capital of Afro-Brazilian culture and erstwhile capital of Brazil, you learn the history of the colonial and slavery times amongst the streets and squares of Pelourinho, the historic part of town. The story of the city and its people lies in its baroque churches, colourful art and live musical rhythms, and in the candomble religious ceremonies and demonstrations of capoeira, the Brazilian martial art developed as self-defence by slaves. You can experience a little of all this during any visit to Salvador.

From the city you travel across the Atlantic Ocean to Morro de Sao Paulo, the tiny town on the northern tip of the island of Tinhare. The old fort ruins welcome you to the island, while wheelbarrows take your luggage to your hotel, with nothing but sand roads and few vehicles on them. Your days in Morro de Sao Paulo can be spent relaxing, with plenty of beach and ocean-based activities in case you want to expend a little energy. Surfing, snorkelling and scuba-diving, horse-riding on miles of empty sands, and boat trips around the island are all easy to arrange. The evenings in Morro de Sao Paulo are just as laidback, with a range of fruits to fill your cocktails at the bars on the beach. 

You finish with some days on the paradise beaches of Boipeba, the island just to the south of Tinhare. If anything, it is even more relaxed, with ocean views from hillside hammocks and the same combination of tropical waters washing the beautiful beaches. 

Deciding what to do during the daytime and choosing your fresh seafood for dinner are about the only things that you have to worry about. The most difficult part of this tour of Salvador, Morro de Sao Paulo and Boipeba may well be leaving this Brazilian paradise behind.

  • Destinations: Salvador - Morro de Sao Paulo & Boipeba
  • Duration: 9 Days / 8 Nights or as many as you wish
  • Trip Style: Traditional
  • Activities: Ecotourism - Beaches - Scuba Diving & Snorkelling

Brazil Adventure Tours provide you with ideas for tours of Brazil and South America, with all being completely flexible with regards to dates, duration or the tours, activities and classes that we can include. Our website tours are our recommendations based on our experience of how to make the very best of your time in South America. We can adjust these details in any way that you wish, with a little advice from us of course. We can combine any of our destinations that you wish to visit into one tour, and for however long you wish to visit them. Any of our Traditional and Adventure tours can also be combined in whichever way you prefer. We are here to organise a tour that suits you after all, not the other way around!

Day 1 : Arrive in Bahia
Your flight arrives in Salvador after flying over the beautiful coastline of Bahia in Brazil\'s north-east. A window seat should give you a view of endless miles of white sand, palm-tree groves and blue ocean. On arrival in Salvador, the state capital of Bahia and first capital of Brazil, you will be welcomed at the airport and transferred to your hotel in the historic centre of the city around Pelourinho. Your day is then free to recover from the journey and enjoy Bahian cuisine such as acarajé or moqueca, usually based around seafood, spices and coconut milk.
Day 2 : Afro-Brazilian Cultural Capital
Your morning tour of Salvador begins by the lighthouse and fort at the entrance of All Saints Bay and continues via the port which unloaded boats from Africa. Ascending to the Upper City, the Lacerda Elevator has exceptional views over the bay. The tour continues on foot through squares and narrow streets lined with colorful colonial buildings to Pelourinho, the heart of the city. This square contained the whipping post where Africans were sold as slaves. The afternoon is free to browse the historic area. Evening brings a spectacular Bahia Folkloric Show, with representations of candomble rituals and capoeira demonstrations.
Day 3 : Over the Ocean to Tinhare
Salvador to Morro de Sao Paulo
In the morning you make the short trip down to the harbour for the journey across the ocean (often bumpy - flights are also available) to Ilha de Tinhare. This island off the coast of Bahia, is only 60km and a whole world away from Salvador. Morro de Sao Paulo is the village spread around the small hills at the northern tip of the 20km long island, which is mostly covered in sand, palm trees and nothing much else. There are no roads, few vehicles and a relaxed atmosphere that envelops you immediately on arrival, as wheelbarrow taxis take your bags across the island to your pousada. The rest of the day is free to unwind and enjoy the beaches.
Day 4 : Sands & Snorkelling
Morro de Sao Paulo
Your days in Morro de Sao Paulo are free to enjoy the delights of one of Brazil's finest islands. The 17th century fortress gate welcomes visitors arriving at the island by boat, and the ruins of the old fort and the lighthouse on the top of the headland are also visible from the sea. A zipline runs down to the beach. There are four beaches around the town, helpfully numbered in order - Primeira, Segunda, Terceira and Quarta Praia! The beaches increase in length as they move away from town, making walks along the edge of the sea on deserted beaches an island pleasure. Encanto and Garapua take you all the way down the island on the sand.
Day 5 : Morro de Sao Paulo Activities
Morro de Sao Paulo
If you want to explore a little, there are easy ways to see more of the island and its waters. Horse-riding along the beach, surfing in the waves or snorkelling and scuba diving on the reefs are easy to arrange. Reefs and rock pools form at low tide, leaving clear, warm water with fish visible from above the surface. The most popular day trip from Morro de Sao Paulo is the boat trip around the island, visiting the reefs at Garapua and Morere, a short stop at Boipeba Island, then through the mangrove channels of the continental side, with stops at oyster farms and the historical little town of Cairu. You can also try wakeboarding here on the calmer waters.
Day 6 : Across the Water to Boipeba
Morro de Sao Paulo to Boipeba
Now if you thought Morro de Sao Paulo was relaxed... Today, the pace drops even further as you make the journey to Boipeba, the island across the Inferno Channel from Tinhare, with swirls of sand, mangroves, reefs, waves and only a short distance between the two of them. The journey by sand-road or boat to your pousada may take a little longer still, depending on which of the few villages you prefer to stay. The charm of Boipeba lies in its rustic outlook, its simple lifestyle and the ease with which you can slip into the laidback nature of this stunning island. After arriving, the rest of the day is free... they are all free.
Day 7 : Paradise Beaches of Bahia
What to do in Boipeba? However much effort you put into your island days, you may be spending them alone! There are around 20km of beautiful beaches, backed by waving palm trees, washed by warm blue seas, and with soft sands stretching out into the distance before you. Boipeba is less visited than Morro de Sao Paulo, but with the same pleasures. A morning on the beach, refreshing in the waves occasionally, a fresh seafood lunch in the shade of a few palms, a cool coconut to wash it all down, a swing in a hammock to snooze it off, before heading back to the beach and the waves to do it all again. What more do you need from Boipeba?
Day 8 : The Final Day in Bahia
If the charms of Boipeba and Bahia haven't quite convinced you to forget everything and stay forever, then your final day on the island could be spent exploring in order to know what you will be missing. Velha Boipeba is the old village close to the channel, praias Cueira and Morere are villages along the Atlantic coast. Ponta dos Castelhanos is the most popular spot for scuba diving at the bottom corner of the island. The Jaguar's Cove lies on the corner closest to the mainland. Boat trips can be found that pass them both and through the Rio dos Patos mangroves to the Rio Inferno. The views from Monte Alegre may entice you from the beaches.
Day 9 : Leaving Your Bahia Paradise...
Boipeba to Salvador & Away
Leaving Bahia behind may be difficult, we know this. Boipeba and Morro de Sao Paulo especially are two places which attract people back time and again. One last look at those palm trees, one last footprint in the sand, one last wave breaking around your ankles and you are off. Whichever combination of boat, tractor, catamaran, plane and car is necessary will have you back in Salvador by the afternoon. From here you can fly on to somewhere else, either in Brazil or to connect with your international flight home. Wherever you go though, it won't be as beautiful as Bahia!
PRICES Simple 3 Star 4 Star Luxury
Per Adult * US$ 1,100 US$ 1,500 US$ 2,125 US$ 2,600
Domestic Flights ** N/A

Suggested Hotels Simple 3 Star 4 Star Luxury
Salvador Bahiacafe Casa do Amarelindo N/A Convento do Carmo
Morro de Sao Paulo & Boipeba


* Prices vary depending on travel dates and flight availability. Peak periods in Brazil including Carnaval, public holidays and Christmas/New Year usually require a minimum number of nights, so in these cases itineraries may need to be changes. ** Domestic flight prices are estimated on typical values when reserved 6 months before travel. Prices can never be guaranteed until reservations are made though, and do usually become more expensive closer to the travel period.

Do I require a Tourist Visa to enter Brazil and other countries visited during this tour?

Citizens of many countries require a Tourist Visa to enter Brazil, organised in advance at your nearest Brazil Consulate.
Please check details for visa requirements for your country on our Brazil Tourist Visa page.
Also, for details of your nearest Brazil Consulate in case you do require a Tourist Visa, please visit our Brazil Consulates page.

Do I need any special vaccinations for the areas visited during this tour?

Visitors to Brazil and South America are advised to always check the latest health information from your local doctors or travel clinic.
You may be advised to take a course of Malaria tablets. Yellow Fever Vaccine is highly recommended/essential for the Pantanal & Amazon region, plus the certificate to prove it, and possibly Hepatitis A and B Vaccines.
Please check our Brazil Vaccinations for further information.

What is the best time of year for this tour?

All Year Round