Salvador, Brazil

Where do I even begin? You know how people have spirit animals? Well, I think I have a spirit city, and that’s 100% Salvador, Brazil!

Never having heard much about Salvador prior to my trip, I went in blind. I knew it was north of Rio and that it was on the water, but other than those 2 nuggets, I didn’t know what to expect.

Salvador blew me away me in so many ways. The city, people, color, architecture, food, oh it was almost too much to take in. I never wanted to leave. It’s often times described as Brazil’s capital of happiness because of it’s amazing outdoor celebrations and the biggest party of all… carnival! Once the capital of Brazil, Salvador is also referred to as Bahia, as it sits right on the Bay and was a key part of shipping back in the day. You can feel the energy and vibrant energy of this city the second you step into town. Heavily influenced by the African population, Salvador is a melting pot of cultures.

Salvador, Brazil. City by the bay

We had the most amazing tour guide of all times, Connor, who was a wealth of knowledge and showed us an amazing time. From walking city tours to traditional African dance, we covered Salvador from top to bottom thanks to Connors knowledge of the city. (Seriously guys, if you go visit, you MUST meet Connor. He’s beyond awesome)

We checked in our hotel Pestana Convento do Carmo, an old monastery that’s since been converted into a posh hotel just outside of the main town square. It’s a beautiful building that’s played host to a handful of hollywoods who’s who when they visit Bahia. Right next to our hotel is a beautiful old church, one of hundreds that dot the city from left to right. Take a peek off any rooftop patio and you’ll see a dozen churches in any direction alongside various streets and alleyways that are lined with multicolored houses ranging from pink to blue to yellow.

Bahia has an epic food scene and stunning local market, where the locals go to pick up their produce! Stalls were lined with fruits and vegetables I’ve never even seen, let alone heard of! Vendors were happy to share samples of their favorite products and I tasted my way through the entire market. I only wish I would have been able to take some of the produce home to use in my kitchen. I would have gladly stayed and wandered around that market for hours.

Thanks in large part to the amazing foods available, Salvador was truly one of the most remarkable food cities I’ve ever experienced. I can’t even function properly when I reminisce back to those few days! So instead, I’m saving an entire post of the food I ate while there…

Also – be sure to check out the Only In South America website! Especially since they are giving away a trip just like the one I was most recently on! Just select the Brazil tab and have at it! You’ve got a few more weeks to enter! In the meantime, here’s a look into the glorious town of Salvador…

Salvador, Brazil. City by the bay

Harbor of Salvador, Brazil.

Salvador Brazil Churches

Salvador Brazil Churches

Salvador Brazil

Salvador Brazil

Salvador Brazil

Salvador Brazil

Salvador Brazil

Salvador Brazil

Traditional Outfits in Salvador Brazil

Local Markets in Bahia

Local Markets in Bahia

Local Markets in Bahia

Local Markets in Bahia

Local Markets in Bahia

Salvador Brazil, Street Vendors

Salvador Brazil, Traditional Dress

For more of my #onlyinsouthamerica posts, be sure to check out my travel section!

5 Tips from a Private Chef email series

Get my latest recipes + my bonus 5 Tips From a Private Chef email series

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog

    Absolutely beautiful photos! Look at all that fresh produce – love it! I’ve always wanted to go to South America. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Monika

    Oh boy would I love to visit this city. It looks so vibrant! And the people look wonderful. I have just added it to my growing bucket list!!

  3. Matthew Horbund – mmwine

    Gaby, just love the photos and the stories of your trip.

    Growing up, my best friends brother-in-law, Cesar, was from Brazil. I always dreamed of visiting, but have yet to make it. It’s absolutely on my “must do” list …


  4. Helen Kennedy

    Looks beautiful. All those veggies look intriguing. Did you find out what some of them were?

  5. Kate @ ¡Hola! Jalapeño

    Gaby, those photos are gorgeous! I have no idea what any of that produce is, I would love to find out, could you share if you know? What a colorful, vibrant place!

  6. Lily (A Rhubarb Rhapsody)

    What an intriguing and vibrant place. Sounds like such an amazing experience, more photos please!

  7. Heather Christo

    I still can’t believe what an amazing trip you took! And this travel photography?! Gurrrrrrllll, you are getting REALLY really good at this. Next stop, Nat Geo?

  8. Katie

    Truly magical, Gaby. I can see why this your spirit city — food + beauty + architecture + the sea + sunshine. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Eveline

    Your pictures are absolutely stunning!!! I might misunderstood what you want to mean in Brazil’s capital, since Salvador is actually Bahia’s capital (which is a state) and Brasília is the capital of the country ;), besides this… amazing pictures that shows exactly what that city has… lots of happiness!!!

  10. Where to eat in Brazil | What's Gaby Cooking

    […] to business. And that business involves food. Obviously. After my #onlyinsouthamerica Brazilian adventure earlier this year, I have a bunch of friends and readers who are going to be jetting off to Brazil […]

  11. Sea Bass Ceviche | What's Gaby Cooking

    […] take place! I’m also majorly sad that I can jet off to Brazil and spend a week or two in my favorite city, at my favorite hotel, and eat copious amounts of Sea Bass […]

  12. Obsessed // Jamie Beck of AnnStreetStudio – What's Gaby Cooking

    […] all over the world. We’ve been on some seriously fabulous trips together including Chile and Brazil and I’m 100% sure that there are more South America adventures in our future as we’re […]