August 2009














Baia de Todos os Santos

Weather Notes

From September to March (summer) NE wind tends to prevail, with hot dry weather. The wet season in this area is pronounced with a change from NE to SE and S and even SW winds, cooler temperatures and much rain.  It begins mid April and extends to the end of August. August brings Southerly storms. In September the wind returns to NE, accompanied by thunderstorms. (Ref: Sailing Directions Pub 124 East Coast of South America)


Not all anchorages and marinas as indicated by ‘Havens and Anchorages’ in the Bahia de Todos os Santos are safe or comfortable in the wet season. Anchorages and marinas must be chosen appropriate to the season and weather forecast.


Weather forecasts: An excellent overview of the South Atlantic situation, generally found accurate. (Portuguese language, but readily understood with a little experimentation and very similar to “passageweather”.)



Baia do Aratu


Iate Clube Aratu: The club offers three days without charge in the anchorage.  The rates have increased. In May 2009 the daily rate was R$0.80/foot for a mooring. Marina berth was R$1.20/foot/day. Wifi internet included in the fee. Not an economical choice at present. All services such as haul out are provided to visitors at 4 times the members rate.


Ilha do Frade south


A good day anchorage is available on the east side of Pta. N.S. de Guadaloupe about 1.2 km ENE of the light. A yacht of less than 2m draft may approach the shore reasonably closely there.


Between Ilha do Frade  and Ilha do Bom Jesus

Ilha do Frade NW shore

A security fence has been built all around the foreshore of Ilha do Frade, from Pta Cavalo to the point opposite the south shore of Ilha Bom Jesus, thus restricting exploration ashore. The anchorage remains isolated and peaceful.

New Area – not previously covered in H&A

Ribeira/ Baia de Itapagipe


Ribeira is the general name given to the suburbs on the shore of the Baia de Todos os Santos and the Baia de Itapagipe, the entrance to which is approximately 5 nautical miles NNE of Bahia Marina. Inside the Baia de Itapagipe is unaffected by the swells rolling into the Baia de Todos os Santos in the S and SE winds and quite tranquil - if more than a little polluted.  The rundown, but formerly upper-class, suburb of Itapagipe is to the south of the entrance on the peninsula that encloses the harbour and is home to several nautical sports clubs, at least three marina facilities and the Saveiro Clube which has a ramp, cradles and winch equipment to haul out yachts.  Pier Salvador marina welcomes and provides excellent support for foreign cruising yachts as well as a number of mostly smaller Brazilian yachts. There is close access to bus services to all Salvador city locations, supermarkets, a large number of seafood restaurants and a selection of local shops. Easy access to both airport and long distance bus station.



Approach and entry

Approaching from the south one must give Pta. de Monte Serrat (which is lit and topped with a fort) a wide berth to avoid the shoals which extend 0.3 nm west from the point.  From this point one should continue on a northerly heading to clear the shallows of the Itaparagipe bank to position 012°53.40’S   038°30.80’W until one can steer east for the red buoy located in approximate position 012°53.90’S 038°29.90’W.  Over the banks there should be a least depth of 1.1m above chart datum, so for most yachts a rising tide or near high water entry and exit would be advised.  Pass close to the buoy’s north side. Shortly beyond will be found depths of 9m or more.  From the buoy shape a course to a point 012°54.60’S   038°29.50’W inside the bay.  Continue rounding the marina jetties which will be visible to starboard until off your destination. 




Pier Salvador is the second marina with floating pontoons that comes into view and is identified by a white concrete building on piles over the water with a roofed concrete pier that branches into a ‘Y’ at its end. A large sign is painted on the building. There may be an orange wind sock flying above the pier.


Beyond Pier Salvador, to the south, is the long pier of the Saveiro Clube.


It is possible to anchor off the first of the jetties to the north of the first marina, or between Pier Salvador and the Saveiro Clube. The area surrounding the bay is poor especially the inner part of the bay, there are many passing fishermen and security at anchor may be an issue.  There is a very good level of security in the marina Pier Salvador.



Berthing and Facilities

Pier Salvador

A small private marina owned and operated by Snr Sandoval Matos in premises built in 1949 as the first Salvador International Airport Terminal, a flying boat facility.  Pier Salvador opened in 2005.  There are plans to expand the number of berths to around 100.



Website: (Portuguese only at present, but contains a set of approach way points and contact details).


Pier Salvador

Av. Porto dos Tainheiros, 1704


CEP: 4021-580

Salvador, Bahia


Phone:  Marina: 0055 (71) 3312-3041

Sandoval Cellular: 0055 (71) 8814-3297

Sandoval is a Mechanical Engineer, very willing to assist in resolving yacht equipment problems, and he and his staff promote a secure friendly family atmosphere in the marina. English spoken. It is a good place to hang out in the wet season (when Itaparica anchorage can become uncomfortable at times) and a very good place also to leave a yacht for a period for travel within Brazil or the S. American continent, or to fly home.  Sandoval can provide care for the yacht during your extended absence.  A workbench area, an outboard engine flushing facility, an internet/reading room and a washing machine are available to guests. There is a small charge per 5 kg load for the washing machine. Free WiFi internet generally reaches yachts in the berths.  Power and water is provided on the pontoons and included in the rates.  The water is not good for drinking.  Drinking water can be purchased.  Marina berth charge (mid 2009) was R$0.80/foot/day.

Within the premises there is a small chandlery, with a limited selection of both second hand and new items, including outboards.  Parts and equipment can be ordered in.  Also there is a busy workshop dedicated to inflatable dinghy repairs.  “A Bordo” restaurant, at the root of the pier, serves an excellent Plate of the Day, plus other dishes ‘to order’ at lunchtimes at very reasonable prices.


Saveiro Clube

This private club operation is willing to serve visiting yachts.  It has a fuel berth (cash only), berthage on a long pier, haul-out ramp and small hardstand. Equipment is available sufficient to haul a 50’ yacht on a steel cradle.  Technical assistance is available.  Adjacent there is a chandlery which sells marine paints, painting equipment, resins, oil, and other maintenance essentials for the local schooners.


Other Marinas

I have no information on the first marina visible as one enters the bay, although I was told by a local yachtsman that the management is also friendly to foreign yacht visitors.





A well stocked local supermarket can be found in the road leading off from opposite the ferry terminal.  A pharmacy on the right corner of the intersection has an ATM machine.

On the shore by the bus terminus area there is a ‘Cesta Povo’ shop (run by the Bahia State government) that sells basic items at discounted prices, although often foods are fresher and better quality at Rodrigues, and good wholemeal bread.

A 25 minute walk left from Pier Salvador, past the Saviero Club and turning right, inland along the same road, will be found a mid-sized Bom Preco supermarket. ATM machines are located at the left of the store entrance. Wholemeal breads are stocked as well as fresh baked.

The large Mercantil Rodrigues and the adjacent Atakarejo bulk discount supermarkets can be easily reached by buses marked ‘Calcada’, or ‘Commercio’ (you will see them on your left; alight outside Sao Joaquim markets and walk back and cross the two roads.)  Catch a return bus from a bus stop to the left from the Rodrigues gate.  If you have a lot to carry back, a taxi is easier.  They wait at the supermarket door.  Go direct to a metered taxi in the rank, don’t let a tout arrange one, or you’ll pay more.


Pier Salvador and the Saveiro Clube chandleries are handy.  There is also a local hardware store a 5 minute walk away in Itapagipe that stocks sandpapers and lightweight electrical wire.  Further afield, there are many electrical supply and auto parts shops in the Calcada area.


Available from the Saveiro Club nearby, or (much more simply) from the fuel barge near Forte de Sao Marcelo, which accepts payment by VISA.


ATM machines in the Pharmacia near the bus terminal (see below) and in the Bom Preco supermarket.





A 10 minute walk along the foreshore to the NW (right) from Pier Salvador is a landing for the small ferry which plies across the entrance of the bay.  Adjacent to this is a bus terminus where buses leave regularly to many destinations in Salvador city.  The bus to ‘Campo Grande’ passes Calcada, Commercio and the Elevator to the Pelourinho.  Many of the other buses also pass through Boa Viagem and Calcada where good shopping is available.  Any bus signed to ‘Ribeira’ will return via Pier Salvador, with a bus stop just before the door.


Sandoval can order a reliable taxi to the airport or the long distance bus station for those early morning or night departures.  Cost is about R$60 to R$70 to airport (mid 2009).  A taxi from Rodrigues supermarket to Pier Salvador costs about R$12.


Baia de Camamu and Rio Marau


There are internet facilities and banks in Camamu, as well as a selection of good small to medium sized supermarkets. Bread is available.




No buoys now exist to mark the approach, making approach hazardous unless waypoints are available, or the Brazilian DHN electronic chart is used with GPS plot of the yacht’s position.

We used waypoints taken from a Brazilian cruising guide publication and checked ourselves against the DHN chart (“Porto de Camamu” 1:30,000 scale) with satisfactory results. They are as follows:

CAMU1    13°52.00’S   38°54.00’W (approx 2.7 Nm ENE of Ponta Muta)

CAMU2    13°52.10’S   38°56.70’W

CAMU3     13°52.70’S    38°58.00’W

CAMU4     13°53.70’S    38°59.10’W

CAMU5    13°54.80’S     38°59.60’W (off the anchorage west of Ilha Campinho.)

Provided that this route is not deviated from significantly, it leads in clear of all dangers.  Watch your cross-track error as the currents can set you off track.

This river mouth can be very rough on an ebb tide with a fresh on-shore breeze.  An exit at slack water may be preferable to plunging into seas that will sweep the decks. From the north you could start at 13°51’S 38°54’W from the north, depending on conditions. It is almost a mile shorter.




South of the concrete wharf a number of Pousadas and private holiday homes line the shore.  Several have jetties.  The ferries to Camamu town now leave from a jetty just south of the concrete wharf at 06:00.  Either ferry will stop and pick you up off the yacht.  Have plenty of fenders ready.  The fare in April 2009 was R$8.00 per person return.  Ferries generally leave Camamu for the return trip about 11:30.  The trip time was 1½ hours.


Ferries departing before dawn to take children to school and returning home around 23:00 make it wise to leave a conspicuous anchor light on all night.


Pousada Lotus mentioned in Marcal Geccon’s book “Cruising the Coast of Brazil” and in local cruising notes has closed.


Pousada Sitia Sabia, the second to last large property on the Campinho shore, welcomes visiting yachts, Brazilian and foreign, and offers help and support.  The pousada has a jetty with a floating pontoon on its southern side and several moorings off the jetty.  A small boat shed and ramp are adjacent to the south side of the jetty.

Pousada Sitio Sabia has a restaurant, from which meals are available to visitors, and a bar in a very pleasant area surrounded by large trees.  A computer terminal with a slow internet connection is available.  The pousada is managed by Carlos Orozco with his father-in-law.  Carlos may be contacted on cell phone (71) 9105 6122.  He has 30 years experience as marine engineer and as professional captain of large private yachts in the Mediterranean and Caribbean and Atlantic Ocean.  He speaks Portuguese, Spanish and English and is able to assist with advice for yacht equipment problems. The pousada runs diving and fishing trips.