Pousada Santa Clara, Boipeba, Bahia
"the guesthouse where Hidden Pousadas Brazil began: total paradise!"
Reservations Pousada Santa Clara
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|Nearest Airport:||Salvador - 150 kms|
wi-fi, restaurant, hammocks, bar
|Language(s):||Spanish, Portuguese, French, English|
|Recommended attractions:||walking, swimming, snorkelling, horseriding, flora & fauna, boat trips, birding|
|Ideal for:||solo travellers, friends sharing, couples|
|Cards Accepted:||Visa, Paypal, Mastercard , AMEX|
|Pousada Guest Book:||
Note: Where pousadas are off the beaten track, Google maps only show the nearest town, and are not an accurate guide to location.
Alison's pousada review
Pousada Santa Clara is the original "hidden pousada", the one where the whole Hidden Pousadas Brazil project started, and it still remains my favourite of all: the one I return to year after year for a fix of paradise.
This is not a luxury pousada in the normal sense of the word.The 12 rooms are colourful and comfortable and all have ceiling fans, but many don't have airconditioning, most don't have even a glimpse of the sea and none have telephones, cable TV or any reliable internet connection. The luxury here comes in the amazing space and atmosphere which New Yorker brothers, Charles and Mark have created in their tranquil location less than a couple of minutes walk from the beach. All the rooms look out onto beautifully kept leafy tropical gardens, there's a thatched library and, even better, a superb restaurant presided over by chef Mark who uses herbs, vegetables, fruit and greens grown on the pousada allotment. There's also a ceramics workshop and lounging/computer space behind the reception where Charles will tell you everything you need to know about Boipeba.
I normally arrive at the Santa Clara around 7pm in time for dinner and perch at the restaurant bar chatting to other guests whilst deciding what delicacies to try. Then next morning it's nearly always a leisurely 2 hour walk along long sandy beaches with swaying palms to the tiny fishing village of Moreré. Add that thought to eating freshly caught beach grilled lobster at Guido's on the way and sipping caipirinhas on the beach watching the sunset on the way back and for me that’s about as close to paradise as you can get.
Special note: Pousada Santa Clara is a pousada with a eco and social conscience and Charles is a key figure in the the Residents' Association and Tourism Groups which together are trying to manage growth and develop Boipeba as a sustainable tourism destination.
Boipeba is a jewel of an island located amongst the mangrove swamps to the south of Salvador- and southeast of the much better known Morro de Sao Paulo. Boipeba is the main village, and the island is predominantly just miles and miles of deserted unspoilt sandy beaches with the occasional fishing village and small shacks where you can stop for a beer or coconut water and often freshly caught fish and seafood.
There is now an air taxi from Salvador if you want to get to paradise in a hurry. For those who prefer a more leisurely approach get the ferry from Salvador to Bom Despacho, then bus to Valenca and speedboat over to the island. Either way the last stretch will be by boat and you`ll either arrive in the village or right by the beach bars near the Santa Clara. Drop your luggage and make sure you are back in time for that caipirinha at sunset. It is unmissable!
- dinner at the Santa Clara restaurant
- a moqueca at the Panela de Barro in Boipeba village
- lobsters at Guido’s on Cueira beach
- casquinha de Siri at Cristiano and Marli’s in Ponta de Castelhano
- walks to Tassimirim, Cueira and Morere beaches
a caipirinha every night, at sunset, on Boipeba beach
- the tranquillity and natural beauty;
- the wonderfully relaxed atmosphere created by Charles and Mark
- conversations with fellow travellers at the superb Santa Clara restaurant/bar
- the “library” of books left by previous travellers which you can exchange for yours
|Try a different place if...
you have difficulty walking, or simply don't enjoy paradise without a mobile phone or constant internet!