The Pelourinho is Salvador’s nightlife capital: bars with outdoor tables and live music spill onto the cobbled streets.

In Barra, find relaxed ambience and music along Av Almirante Marques de Leão and the waterfront around the Farol da Barra. Bohemian Rio Vermelho has one of the more interesting nightlife scenes in the region.

Pelourinho & Carmo

Many restaurants and cafés on the side streets of the Pelourinho offer live music at night.

A Night Out in Rio Vermelho

The coastal neighborhood of Rio Vermelho has always been culturally significant to the city of Salvador: Portuguese sailors wrecked their ship offshore in 1510, famed writer Jorge Amado lived here and the important Candomblé festival Festa da Iemanjá, honoring the goddess of motherhood and fertility, takes place on its shores. But in recent years, the neighborhood has also emerged as a hub of nightlife.

Arrive around sunset and take your pick from the sea of plastic tables and chairs set up on the lively plaza of Largo de Santana. Several casual bars serve cold beer to these outdoor tables, but the real attraction is the traditional street food prepared by colorfully dressed Bahian women at stands around the square. Particularly legendary are the acarajé (balls of dough fried in dendê oil and served with spicy sauces and shrimp.)

On any given evening, there are cultural events and free concerts in the square, at the cultural center Casa de Lemanjá, and around the waterfront market Mercado do Peixe. Afterwards, go for drinks at nearby Póstudo, then catch some live music at Commons Studio Bar. After midnight, hit the dance floor at San Sebastian.

Rio Vermelho is about a 30-minute walk along the coast – or a short bus ride from Barra on any bus marked 'Orla' (waterfront).