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Essential Salvador

Discover the essential sights of Salvador on a half day tour tracing the development of the city from its simple beginnings to what is now the third largest city in Brazil. The tour focusses on historical and geographical aspects of the city and serves as a fine orientation for those wishing to further explore the city.

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how it works


After hotel pick up with private guide Essential Salvador takes you to the Barra district at mouth of the immense bay, site of important historical landmarks in Brasil’s early colonial period, now also residential waterfront neighbourhood. We then proceed via elegant tree-lined avenues and bustling city streets to the Pelourinho, a Unesco Heritage site and the largest complex of colonial architecture in the South America. We leave the vehicle at the Muncipal Square, by the towering Lacerda Elevator, allowing for great views of the bay stretching out to the lower city, and stroll through the narrow, bustling streets lined with buildings in pastel shades of an age gone by, soaking in the sights and sounds of this vibrant city. We visit the church of São Francisco with its exuberant gold-leafed Baroque interior and the Pelourinho square, the heart of the old town.

what to see

  • Historic landmarks at Barra district

  • São Francisco Church

  • Cathedral or other church

  • Walking tour of historical district

  • Comprehensive city orientation / overview

Complementary Tours


Lower City Tour

The Lower City tour offers another perspective of the sprawling city, taking us to the quiet waters of the Itapagipe Peninsula where life moves at a slower pace than the bustling upper city


Bahia by Night

An evening immersed in the permeating African heritage with an exhilarating performance by the Bahia Folklore Company (Balé Folclórico da Bahia), one of the most respected folklore dance troupes in the world


Schooner Bay Cruise

Amerigo Vespucci boldly went where no European had gone before when he landed at the entrance to the bay on Nov 01, 1501, All Saints’ Day, hence the name All Saints’ Bay. Aboard a motorized wooden schooner we take to the waters of the bay for a full day cruise of the largest tropical bay in the world

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