Carnival And Cuisine In Salvador, Bahia’s Old Town

carnival and cuisine in salvador bahias old town

As authorities have wisely suspended next month’s Carnival in Salvador, Brazil, the following chronicle anticipates the exciting event’s return in 2022.

The Brazilian city of Salvador earned its UNESCO World Heritage designation for many reasons, not least of which is that this capital of Bahia is the cradle of much of the nation’s culture, from food and Afro-Brazilian roots to music and its ultra-authentic Carnival.

The Church of Nossa Senhora do Rosario dos Pretos lies right in the heart of Pelourinho. Credit: Camilla Prado

Not as famous internationally as Rio’s Carnival, Salvador’s is gaining ever more international adherents for its unique elements, such as trio elétrico which are music truck floats that follow prescribed routes. Increasingly, visitors also are discovering the raucous fun of the city’s official Pre-Carnival festivities that rev up nearly two weeks before Ash Wednesday. (Next year’s Carnaval—as the word carnival is spelled in Portuguese—takes place February 24 to March 2, 2022.)

While it may be early to prepare for next Carnival season, Salvador’s colonial Old Town with its celebrated Pelourinho section—which itself hosts major portions of Carnival—is a famously colorful and dynamic place anytime of year. To boot, a handful of the city’s finest restaurants are located on this side of the city that faces All Saints Bay.

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