Suggested Itinerary: 7 Days/ 6 Nights
Day 1 – RIO
Arrival in Rio and transfer to chosen hotel. Balance of the day at leisure. Overnight.
Day 2 – RIO
Breakfast at hotel and departure for a Full Day tour Corcovado & Afro Heritage. The Christ the Redeemer statue is located at Corcovado Mountain, 710 meters above the sea level, is the most beautiful postcard of Rio de Janeiro since 1931. The tour continues towards the City Center for visit at the Nossa Senhora do Rosário church and The Black museum. The visitor will notice traditional African religious offerings placed on the steps of the church in the Brazilian syncretic fashion. A few blocks away there is the traditional Confeitaria Colombo restaurant, where a buffet lunch will be served. The last part of the day will be at the Gamboa area (with the Salt Stone) and finishing at the Zumbi dos Palmares monument. The Salt Stone is the oldest continuously inhabited Black neighborhood in Rio. From the arrival of the first African slave, this small region near the port provided a geological protection that one can plainly nowadays. Known as Little Africa, the generations who inhabited this community for 5 centuries, contributed the greatest cultural markers that continue to make Brazil a favorite touristic destination about African culture the world over. Return to hotel and leisure time. In the evening, visitors will enjoy live Samba music at Rio Scenarium nightclub, located in Lapa, the bohemian area of Rio. Return to hotel and overnight.
Day 3 – RIO
Breakfast at hotel and departure for a Full Day tour to Valença city (approximately 3 hours journey). The first visit is at Quilombo Sao Jose da Serra, which is a descendant community of slaves. It is about 150 years old and is the oldest one in the state. About 200 people live there, in their adobe houses or wattle-and-daub and thatched roof. Working together in subsistence agriculture, Catholicism, Umbanda, traditional handicrafts, wood stove, Jongo and the Chaplet of Saint Mary are part of the daily lives of residents since the arrival of their ancestors on the farm, around 1850. Tour continues to the Taquara Coffee Farm. This property is a coffee farm with almost two centuries of existence, but still a coffee production center as in the past century. They welcome guests with a delicious breakfast, farm snack or lunch, served in the old depot located below the house, where slaves used to work, and today it has become the Taquara Restaurant. The visit will also include histories about the family, the mansion with its original collection of 1830 coffee process, and a visit at the seedling nursery and plantation. Return to hotel at the end of the afternoon and overnight.
Day 4 – RIO/ SALVADOR
Breakfast at hotel and transfer to the airport. Arrival in Salvador and transfer to chosen hotel. Balance of the day at leisure. Overnight.
Day 5 – SALVADOR
Breakfast at hotel and departure for a Full Day tour Afro Heritage. The African roots of Salvador on a city tour which combines the newer, modern section and the older Historical Center of Salvador, the Pelourinho area, so called after the pillory which stood in the main square, in front of the central slave market. Visit the Afro-Brazilian Museum, which traces the West African origins of the city, and see the superb wooden sculpted panels of the orixá's by Salvador's most celebrated artist, Carybé. Visit to the Church of Our Lady of the Rosary, the famous Black church, built with meager resources over a period of almost 100 years. Next-door is the intimate Bahian Gastronomy Museum, which focuses on the African influence on Bahia cuisine. The Lower City tour offers another perspective of the sprawling city, taking the visitors to the quiet waters of the Itapagipe Peninsula where life moves at a slower pace than the bustling upper city. Visit the Bonfim church, one of the most important churches of pilgrimage in Brazil and deeply syncretized with the Candomblé. The tour continues to the Monserrat district with its panoramic view of the city and on to the Mercado Modelo, a thriving market for local artifacts and souvenirs. Return to hotel and balance of the day at leisure.
Day 6 – SALVADOR
After breakfast, tour Candomblé: Salvador’s African Identity. Candomblé is the reverence of the natural forces that regulate the planet on which we live. Brought to Brazil by the enslaved, it remains mysterious to many and misunderstood by others but is key to understanding the permeating influence that underpins Salvador’s uniquely African identity. Its role in the struggle against the blight of slavery cannot be overstated. After breakfast, visit a traditional candomblé terreiro or house of worship, established at the turn of the 20th century, far from the then city center to avoid the overbearing repression of the traditional belief system. The subsequent expansion of the city has meant that the temple’s grounds have been surrounded by the burgeoning metropolis, the background against which the terreiro maintains the traditional religious and social values of ancestral ways. Participants in the visit will gain an insight into the religious, historical and social aspects of the candomblé. Return to hotel and leisure time. In the evening, dinner at Uauá Restaurant and show at Miguel Santana Theater with the Bahia Folklore Company. Return to hotel, overnight.
Note: Dark clothing must be avoided. Guests should wear light colored clothing (preferably white) while women are invited to use below-the-knee-line long skirts.
Day 7 – SALVADOR
Breakfast at hotel and transfer to the airport.
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