Sunday 21 June 2009

Salvador de Bahia

Postmarked São Paulo, dated 6 April 2009.
Salvador - Bahia - Brasil.

Salvador was once the capital of Brazil and known as Bahia, also the name of the state.  It was one of the first capital cities in the new world.  And it was the first slave market on the continent, with slaves from Africa arriving to work on sugar plantations.  As a result the population is mainly of African descent, originating from Nigeria, Ghana, Togo and Benin.

The historical centre, the Pelourinho, is full of buildings dating from the 17th century.  It has retained much of its old character and colourful buildings.  Because of this it has been listed by UNESCO and a major restoration programme has made it into a a major tourist attraction.  Unfortunately for them, many people had to be moved out of the centre to allow for this restoration.
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