O Salvador Bus it has been operating in Salvador since 2007. It is a great option for people who want to know a little about the city’s history and main tourist attractions. There are six buses running in the city, but on two different routes. We at Vamos Por Aí tried it out and we are going to tell you how our adventure was.
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The bus is very beautiful and attracts a lot of attention. We were with three kids and they were super excited to see the bus. It has two floors. To better enjoy the tour, try to sit on the second floor, preferably in the armchairs on the left side, because as much of the tour is along the edge, you will be able to have a privileged view and take beautiful photos.
⇒ Check out the best tours in Salvador
The bus has partnerships with many hotels in the city. To see the complete list, go to here. At the appointed time, he passes in front of the hotel and picks up the guests who will take the tour. As we were staying at Gran Hotel Stella Maris, at 9:30 am, the bus was in front of the Hotel from where we left for a tourist tour in Salvador.
Our hotel was second on the list, so we had to wait for it to pass all the other hotels. I confess that I found it a little tiring, mainly because we were very anxious to reach the charts.
During much of the journey, the bus goes along Avenida da Orla. So prepare the camera that can take many beautiful photos! As we pass in front of the tourist spots, the guide, using a microphone, warns us and tells us some curiosities about the place, in Portuguese and English. The sound is loud and everyone can hear and understand very well.
The bus makes four fixed stops where passengers can get off and quickly get to know the attractions. The guide advises the time when we should return to the bus. Below we list the stops and the time available to visit them.
- Barra Lighthouse: 30 minutes
- Model market: 1 hour and 10 minutes
- Our Lord of Bonfim Church in Bahia:15 minutes
- Sister Dulce Memorial: 15 minutes
The Farol da Barra or Farol de Santo Antônio is located inside the Santo Antônio da Barra Fort. It was built in 1698. It is considered the oldest lighthouse in America. Inside it is located the Nautical Museum.
THEI filled the time allotted for this stop enough to get to know the place. But there is no time to visit the Museum. We took some pictures, walked around the Fort, enjoyed the view and it was time to head back to the bus.
Address: Farol da Barra beach
It was opened in 1912 and is the ideal place to buy handicrafts and souvenirs from Salvador. It is one of the main tourist attractions in the city.
Unfortunately we didn’t have time to visit it. We passed quickly inside it to be able to reach the Lacerda elevator. We had to close our eyes, because there were so many beautiful crafts and we couldn’t even stop to look. It was pretty bad… but it was our choice, as we were fighting the clock. An hour and ten minutes is not enough to visit everything this region has to offer. Our option wasWe went to Pelourinho and that’s what we did.
Address: Visconde de Cairu Square s/n, Cidade Baixa
Hours of Operation: From Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 7 pm and Sundays and holidays from 9 am to 2 pm.
It opened in 1873 and was the first elevator in the world to serve as public transport. At the time of its opening it was the tallest in the world. It is one of the symbols of the city of Salvador. It connects Praça Tomé de Sousa in Cidade Alta (pelourinho) to Praça Cayru in Cidade Baixa (near Mercado Modelo). From the top of its towers we can have a privileged view of the Baía de Todos os Santos, the Mercado Modelo and the Forte de São Marcelo. It is 72 meters high.
When you get down from the elevator in Cidade Alta, you’ll find the A Cubana ice cream shop. Of course, we took a break and went for ice cream. Don’t miss out on experimenting. It’s delicious!!! I had the caramelized banana, which was divine. My son had a milkshake that he wouldn’t let anyone try.
From there we walked for 1 km and arrived in Pelourinho. I confess that it was a little complicated, as we were with 3 children and the sun was very hot! But we couldn’t let go.
Address: Praça da Sé s/n – Historic Center
Opening hours: 24 hours
Pelourinho was considered a Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 1985. It is one of the main postcards of the city. There are restaurants, handicraft shops, churches, cultural centers, old colonial-style houses and the drumming of Olodum. And pleases everyone!
Unfortunately we didn’t have time to enjoy the place, because when we managed to get there, it was time to go back!
Jorge Amado House Foundation
The Casa de Jorge Amado Foundation is also located there, where you can find the writer’s literary collection, as well as original manuscripts and many panels about his books. As I really wanted to get in, I ran through everything, as I had less than ten minutes to see everything.
Address: Largo do Pelourinho n. 51
Hours of Operation: Monday to Friday from 10 am to 6 pm and Saturday from 10 am to 4 pm.
From there we returned to the Mercado Modelo, as there was the meeting point to return to the bus and continue the tour. The bus left exactly at the scheduled time towards the Church of Nosso Senhor do Bom Fim.
We caught some traffic on the way and one of the boys fell asleep. The others got very tired with the walk we took to get to Pelourinho and didn’t want to go down to the Church. My husband stayed on the bus with them.
Church of Our Lord of Bonfim
The Senhor do Bonfim Basilica was built between 1746 and 1754 and is one of the most visited tourist attractions in the city. O Senhor do Bonfim is an icon of the Bahian faith. The place is full of street vendors who will want you to buy the ribbons anyway.
The origin of the famous Senhor do Bonfim ribbon goes back more than 200 years. They are measured from the length of the right arm to the chest of the image of Senhor do Bonfim, 47 cm. In front of the church from one end to the other, devotees tie ribbons and make the three requests to the Lord of Good End. Of course I did mine too…
I thought the fifteen minutes allotted to visit the site was enough. I managed to quickly visit the church and tie my little ribbon. But if I wanted to sit in church and pray a little, I wouldn’t have time.
Check out the tips from D & D Mundo Afora about your visit to Bonfim’s Church.
Address: Senhor do Bonfim Square, Lower City
Sister Dulce Memorial
It was opened in 1993 and is a permanent exhibition that contains photographs, habits used by the religious, documents, books, diplomas, medals and personal objects, in addition to the room where there is a chair in which she slept for over 30 years because of a promise.
We did a guided tour in the place and I confess that I was surprised, because I liked it a lot. The guide was super attentive and told us a little about Sister Dulce’s life. It was pretty quick, but it was worth it. Mainly due to the fact that if I were to prepare my itinerary in the city, I would not put this attraction, but I liked it.
I thought the fifteen minutes allotted to visit the site was enough. This was the last stop on the tour.
Address: Avenida Bonfim, 161 Largo de Roma
Hours of Operation: From Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm.
Value: Free of charge
During the bus journey, he passes several hotels. One of them is the Hotel Mar Brasil. In front of it is located the Vinicius de Moraes Monument, work by the plastic artist Juarez Paraíso, which pays homage to the great poet who lived for six years in Bahia. The Monument is located near the house where he lived. I think it would be really cool to take a break so we could go down and take pictures on the spot. I took the photo from inside the bus, with him walking, but you can see it in the photo below.
Along the way we also passed in front of the The Girls of Brazil Monumentl, known as Ondina’s Fat Girls. There are three bronze sculptures by the plastic artist Eliana Kértsz, which symbolize the female presence in Bahian culture, represented by Catarina, the native Indian, Mariana; the white European and Damiana, the black African.
We also passed in front of the Dique de Tororó. It was built by the Dutch, in the 18th century, with a water mirror of about 110 thousand square meters. Inside it are located sculptures made by the plastic artist Tati Moreno that represent 8 orixás: Oxum, Ogum, Oxóssi, Xangô, Oxalá, Iemanjá, Nanã and Iansã.
At the end of the route, the bus passes in front of the Fonte Nova Arena, but does not stop. You can only see the stadium and take pictures. As we were seated on the second floor, we were able to at least take a picture.
With that, the tour came to an end. From there the bus retraced its route and dropped off passengers at their hotels. We left the hotel at 9:30 am and returned at 4:30 pm.
Want to know more tips on what to do in Salvador? See the tips from the blog I went to be a Traveler A weekend in Salvador: 7 must-see tours.
The route taken by the bus is quite long. We traveled more than 80km to visit the attractions listed here. We enjoyed the tour, but found it a bit tiring, especially with children. I think because the journey is long and we got into traffic at times. But it’s a nice way to get to know the main sights of Salvador on the same day.
On the website it is informed that during the entire journey the passenger can embark and disembark at any location, within the already established itinerary, but this does not happen. There are two routes and this is only possible on one of them. The Stella Maris/Itapuã route (which we took the tour on) does not have this possibility.
Value: BRL 70.00 for adults and R$ 55.00 for children from 3 to 12 years old and above. Values in July/2020
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