Picture Postcard Island

Trip Start Dec 29, 2007
Trip End Sep 01, 2008

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Flag of Brazil  , State of Bahia,
Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Spent a wonderful few days on Morro de Sao Paulo, which is around 2hrs by fast boat off the coast of Bahia.

After my rather late arrival in Salvador the night before the thought of hitting the beach to relax was extremely appealing. It had been a marathon 27hr journey, the last 1.5hrs of which were marred by a massive tailback just outside the city. So it was a pretty swift exit from the hostel, straight to the ferry building for the next sailing to the island of Tinharé. From there it was a short walk to my hostel, through the main square and narrow winding streets. The island is a popular destination for wealthy Brazilians and travellers wanting to get away from it all. There are no cars, just guys with wheelbarrows waiting to assist new arrivals with their luggage as they disembark from the ferry.

I planned to stay a couple of days on the island but ended up staying for four. The weather was glorious, and I made pals with a few nice people from the hostel  which made evening meals a lot more interesting. Many of the local specialities  were too large for a single person, so  I had a good opportunity to try  some wonderful  dishes, such as mariscada, a kind of fish stew that was delicious!

We were also not short of adventure on the island, when we almost got swept out to sea while venturing on a coastal walk to the next bay called Gamboa. Of course we were completely unprepared and did not time our walk to coincide with low tide! We managed to make it a good way along, but finally gave up and were looking for an alternative route inland when we were spotted by three local lads in small inflatable kayaks who came to our rescue. I had a few scratches from my foray into the bush to find a path, and got a few more as I hastily clambered back down to the shore and dragged myself on board! So it was a leisurely arrival in Gamboa courtesy of our young heros, who refused to take anything in return for saving our skins. We steadied our nerves for the ferry journey back with a stiff caipirinha!

All good things must come to an end however, and my time in Morro was no exception. I was also keen to get back to Salvador to experience the famous Tuesday street party! So to extend the holiday vibe I took the scenic route which involved very little expense (about 6GBP!) but a good few hours of boats and buses. All worth it though!
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