Introduction

Cachoeira, affectionately known as the jewel of the Recôncavo, is a sleepy place, full of colorful, mostly preserved colonial architecture uncompromised by the presence of modern buildings. The town sits below a series of hills, strung along the banks of the Rio Paraguaçu in a face-off with its twin, São Félix – the two towns are connected by a striking British-built bridge divided for cars and pedestrians. A steady trickle of tourism flows through the area, attracted by Brazil’s best tobacco, its reputation as a renowned center of Candomblé and a strong wood-sculpting tradition. It's possible to see both Cachoeira and São Félix on a long day trip from Salvador, but it makes more sense to detour here (using Feira de Santana as a hub) on your way to or from Parque Nacional Chapada Diamantina.