Mata Atlântica, mangroves, sandbanks and a coast with a huge coral reef - the largest of Baía de Todos os Santos, about 20 km long. You will find this paradisiacal scenery on the island of Itaparica.
With 246 km ² of extension, the largest island of the Baía de Todos os Santos, is divided between two cities: Itaparica, with some colonial constructions, and Vera Cruz, with the best beaches in the area, usually with shallow, calm and warm waters. Altogether there are 40 km of beach. The city also has restaurants offering various kinds of dishes, from seafood to pizza and barbecue.
In Itaparica, you will find the Fonte da Bica, the only seaside hidromineral water source in the Americas, famous for having medicinal properties and the "water that makes old ladies become girls". The São Lourenço Fortress, built by the Dutch in 1647, is another attraction recommended for visitors.
Among the beaches are, Manguinhos, with good diving conditions, the Ponta do Mocambo, sought for the practice of naturism, and the Cacha-Pregos, one of the most isolated beaches of the island. The waters around the island is great for practicing nautical sports and is sought after by sailors from all over the world.
The Parque Ecológico de Baiacu, located in the village with the same name, guards the ruins of the Nosso Senhor da Vera Cruz Chapel and is excellent for walking and observing the typical flora, such as the gameleiras sagradas do candomblé. Indigenous and African heritage are preserved through the habits of its residents, in small-scale fishing and popular parties.
Itaparica has a huge and modern resort that offers comfortable facilities and numerous sport and leisure options. In addition to infrastructure for events and conventions, the site has a landing strip and offers aircraft charter for business.
The award-winning Brazilian writer João Ubaldo Ribeiro, author of books such as Sargento Getúlio, 1971, and Viva o Povo Brasileiro, in 1984, was born in Itaparica.
Departing from Salvador, you can go to the island via boats leaving every 30 minutes from Terminal Turistico Náutico da Bahia and dock on the Mar Grande beach, or in the boats that leave from the Terminal São Joaquim and dock in Bom Despacho.
You can roam through a large part of the island walking along the seashore. This small map can help.
Vans are widely used as transportation for the interior of the island and there are many of them in barges and ferries. Talk to drivers regarding routes and costs. Check the list of companies that provide this service, if you want to hire them before reaching the island.