Salvador offers wonderful shopping and some of the best crafts in all of Brazil. The best buys include crafts made out of wood, ceramics, or leather; musical instruments; and CDs of axé music. Remember to always bargain.
Pricey but unique pieces can be bought at the many galleries in Pelourinho. Galeria 13, Rua Santa Isabel 13 (tel. 071/3242-7783), has a large exhibit space with regular showings of work by local artists. Galeria de Arte Bel Borba, Rua Luis Viana 14 (tel. 071/3243-9370), specializes in the sculptures and paintings by Bel Borba; his work is colorful and fresh. For top-of-the-line names check out Oxum Casa de Arte, Rua Gregorio de Matos 18 (tel. 071/3321-0617). The large collection of art includes work by Mario Cravo and Carybé, who did the large wood panels of the Orixás in the Afro-Brazilian museum. The Fundação Pierre Verger, in honor of the French photographer and ethnologist who specialized in Afro-Brazilian culture, displays a fabulous collection of his works and sells Verger's amazing photo books; Rua da Misericordia 9, centro histórico (tel. 071/3321-2341).
Salvador has a number of shopping malls outside of the downtown core. Shopping Barra, Av. Centenario 2992, Barra (tel. 071/3339-8222), is just a few blocks from the Farol da Barra; it's open Monday through Friday from 10am to 10pm and Saturday from 9am to 8pm. A bit farther out, next to the bus station, is one of the larger malls, Shopping Iguatemi, Av. Tancredo Neves 148, Pituba (tel. 071/3350-5060). Open Monday through Friday from 10am to 10pm and Saturday from 9am to 9pm. Take buses marked RODOVIARIA. Here you'll find everything you need: clothing, souvenirs, books, and CDs, as well as movie theaters and an excellent food court.
For above-average souvenir T-shirts, check out these stores: Litoral Norte, Rua Gregorio de Matos 30 (tel. 071/3322-3781), sells a beautiful collection of T-shirts and also has some lovely hand-painted hammocks; Boutique Ilê Aiyê, Rua Francisco Muniz Barreto 16 (tel. 071/3321-4193), sells CDs and T-shirts and other merchandise with the Ilê Aiyê band's logo, and part of the funds support the group's educational program; Projeto Axé, Rua das Laranjeiras 9 (tel. 071/3321-7869), is a nonprofit organization that sells great skirts, shorts, kangas, blouses, and other clothing to raise funds to support projects for street children.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.