Praia Do Forte

  • It is also worth visiting the little church and magnificent ancient fig tree.
    © Carlos Rodrigues
    Praia do Forte church

    It is also worth visiting the little church and magnificent ancient fig tree.

Amy Adejokun
Amy Adejokun Expert destination Brazil

This fishing village 43 mi north of Salvador de Bahia is one of the cradles of Brazilian civilisation, and is named after the castle - the only feudal building ever constructed in Latin America - built in 1556 by a Portuguese colonist. Brazil's first farm was founded here, and the restored ruins can still be visited, offering a beautiful panoramic view over the surrounding forest and Atlantic Ocean. It is also worth seeing the little church and magnificent centuries-old fig tree. Thanks to the constant Atlantic breeze blowing in off the sea, Praia do Forte (fort beach) has ideal conditions for surfers and windsurfers, and at low tide, natural swimming pools form, the crystal clear water perfect for swimming. The village is intersected by a very busy shopping street containing many bars, restaurants and shops. Don't miss the Projeto TAMAR project, an eco-museum allowing visitors to observe sea turtles and sharks developing in large outdoor tanks. It helps protect a number of endangered species of sea turtle, including the Leatherback turtle, which can grow to lengths in excess of 6 ft and comes here to lay its eggs on the beach from September to March. If you are lucky, you may even get to see this moving spectacle! From August to October humpback whales can be seen from the 7 mi of beaches, fringed by 100,000 coconut palms! Fishermen organise boat outings to see them close up.

Praia Do Forte: what to do?

A trip down the Imbassai River to a deserted beach and a walk on to the fishing village of Santo Antonio, where you can visit the Tamar project for the protection of turtles and fort Garcia d'Avila at Praia do Forte, from which the village takes its name. Plan on visiting the Carvellas reef: it is a great spot for diving as you can swim along a 30m-long coral reef amongst shimmering marine flora and fauna. The excursion to the Chapada Diamantina, some 250 miles from Salvador, provides the opportunity to explore the former diamond region, now a spectacular natural park that is great for hiking, complete with rainforests, canyons and waterfalls you can swim in.

The Tamar project for the protection of turtles, and Fort Garcia d'Avila, built in 1556 by a Portuguese settler and the only feudal construction in the whole of Latin America! This is also where the first Brazilian farm was built. The restored ruins can still be visited and offer beautiful panoramic views of the surrounding forest and the Atlantic Ocean. It is also worth visiting the little church and the incredible hundred-year-old fig tree.

  • One of the cradles of Brazilian civilization.
  • The Tamar project for the protection of turtles.
  • This old fishing village is becoming too touristic and is starting to loose its authenticity.

Praia Do Forte: what to visit?

The fauna and flora


Comfortable and lightweight (cotton or linen) clothes are necessary. Sunscreen and anti-mosquito products are always useful. If you come in June, Praia do Forte is all done up for the St John's festivities, which are the most important after carnival. At night, there are fireworks and people of all ages dance to the sound of folk music! The atmosphere is friendly, joyful and incredibly authentic. From August to November, humpback whales can be spotted from the 7.5 miles of beaches lined with 100,000 coconut trees. There are fishermen who organise boat trips to see them up close. From September to March, turtles come to lay their eggs on the beaches here.

Praia Do Forte: what to eat?

Among the specialities from Bahia, regional cuisine that is famous throughout the country, the fish, shrimp or chicken with coconut cooked in dendê (palm oil) is a real treat. 'Moqueda de peixe' (a kind of fish stew) and 'mariscado' (seafood stew). There are two popular Brazilian dishes that can also easily be found, namely 'cozido' and 'feijoada', prepared with beans, rice, manioc flour and meat. All dishes are served with 'pirao' (a thick manioc sauce), 'farofa' (a mixture of manioc flour, warm butter and salt), and a hot sauce to spice things up a bit. During your stay in Brazil you'll have plenty of opportunities to sample the traditional local fruit: bananas, mangos, watermelon, pineapple, oranges, papayas, passion fruit and guava, as well as the less known ones like cashews, star fruit and Surinam cherries. Alcohol made from sugar cane, cachaça or pinga is enjoyed neat or with a mixer. Combine it with sugar, lime and the right mixing technique and it becomes a caipirinha. Mix it with fruit juice and you get a 'batida'. Finally, you will be able to try a can of guarana, a popular soda made with seeds from the Amazon and which offers a good exotic alternative to Coca Cola!

Praia Do Forte: what to buy?

Fashion enthusiasts won't be able to resist bringing home a pair of the popular Brazilian flip-flops, Havaianas, as they are half the price here that they are in Europe, while other popular souvenirs include a bottle of Cachaça, Brazilian rum (an alcoholic sugar cane drink), a hammock, wooden sculptures, trendy hippie jewellery and hammocks. Capoeira trousers are light and comfortable to wear. If you can find one, a wooden samba whistle might be a nice souvenir!

Praia Do Forte Reviewedhotels
  • 8.65 /10
    Rated by Easyvoyage
    Tivoli Ecoresort Praia do Forte
    Praia Do Forte - Brazil
    Hotel Hotel 5 Etoile(s)

    Nestled at the heart of a vast tropical garden, the Ecoresort ...

  • 8.35 /10
    Rated by Easyvoyage
    Iberostar Bahia
    Praia Do Forte - Brazil
    Hotel Hotel 5 Etoile(s)

    The Ibérostar Bahia is an all-round resort with an all-inclusive ...

  • 8.25 /10
    Rated by Easyvoyage
    Vila Galé Mares
    Praia Do Forte - Brazil
    Hotel Hotel 5 Etoile(s)

    The Vila Gale is not a villa like its name might suggest but ...

  • 8.1 /10
    Rated by Easyvoyage
    Pousada Porto Da Lua Praia Do Forte
    Praia Do Forte - Brazil
    Hotel Hotel 3 Etoile(s)

    The Pousada Porto da Lua is a charming little hotel in a perfect ...

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