Arraial d'Ajuda

Photo of Arraial d'Ajuda

About Arraial d'Ajuda

Once a tropical playground for well-to-do Argentines, Arraial d'Ajuda has become a favourite of backpackers and hippies in recent years, who flock in droves to this far-flung, unspoilt and beautiful corner of Brazil. Nestling on a majestic stretch of glittering golden coastline, it makes for the ideal beach holiday: with three beaches, a gorgeous heritage-protected village and one of the oldest churches in Brazil, Arraial d'Ajuda is quite simply enchanting. Our collection of the best places to stay in Arraial d'Ajuda offer beach-side properties ideal for very relaxing holidays.

Arraial is a peaceful, touristy village. Lined with dusty lanes and paved roads, all in the shadow of old and solid brightly painted houses; tall trees stand scattered about the village, providing generous shade to visitors, while the air is perfumed with the scent of tropical flowers. Atop the highest point of the village stands the church of Nossa Senhora da Ajuda, one of the oldest churches in Brazil, built in the mid 16th century.

Founded by Portuguese Jesuits in 1549, the name alludes to a popular Portuguese saint, Our Lady of Help, the name of one of the first ships that beached on its beautiful shoreline. The church, Nossa Senhora da Ajuda, was once the spiritual heartland of the Brazilian Catholic church: simple and beautiful, it is surrounded by quaint little local shops and is a renowned pilgrimage site.

People come to the village for the beaches. The wide and golden stretch of coastline has a pure and unspoilt charm to it. The Praia de Pitanga is absolutely divine: ideal for families, it isn't too thronged by tourists or locals like the dirtier, more unkempt cousin, Praia do Mucuge, whose one boon is the mass of food stalls that line the beach-head. If you're looking for seclusion, go no further than Praia de Taipe, a deserted beach 20 minutes out-of-town by car.

What not to miss

  • Drink in the sublime view of the coastline and spot the place where the sky and sea meet.
  • Find some solace inside the church, Nossa Senhora da Ajuda.
  • Head out to the secluded beach, Praia de Taipe.
  • Visit Trancoso's historic Quadrado.
  • Walk the narrow dusty lanes in the lovely shade of trees.
  • Check out the quaint local shops that surround the church.

This is the perfect destination for a beach break. To start planning your trip browse through our collection of the best places to stay in Arraial d'Ajuda.

The best places to stay in Arraial d'Ajuda

Seaside getaway

  • Maitei Hotel: perfect for a romantic retreat, this gorgeous hotel offers elegantly-designed rooms with breathtaking views of the sea. Adult-only, the restaurant serves sumptuous Mediterranean cuisine and sailing trips can be organised by the hotel. Utterly divine.

Designer chic

  • Casa do Dean: surrounded by palm trees and staring longingly out to sea stands the Casa do Dean, a fabulous and truly luxurious self-catering villa. With chic interiors married with Brazilian flair, there is a pool and immediate access to the beach. Perfect for large families.

For an apartment or villa

  • Our partner Booking.com has a wide range of villas and apartments in the nearby area.

Travel information

  • The best time to go is between January and March when there is little rainfall and the temperature averages at around 25 degrees.
  • Fly to Brasilia, then get a connection to Porto Seguro, from where you can get a ferry or bus to Arraial d'Ajuda.
  • If you want to rent a car we recommend contacting our partner Rentalcars.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in Arraial d'Ajuda

  • Maitei Hotel Arraial d'Ajuda 17 rooms from £167

    A sublime hotel hugging the stunning coast of Bahia. Elegantly designed and beautifully thought-out, the hotel offers charming rooms, an excellent restaurant and imperious views over the Atlantic. Made for a romantic getaway.

    Sights nearby  -  Visit Trancoso's historic Quadrado, less than four miles from the hotel.
    Surfing  -  Try your hand at surfing on some of Brazil's finest waves.
    Sailing  -  Sailing trips can be organised by the hotel.
    Restrictions on children  -  Adult only.
    Check Availability
  • Casa do Dean Arraial d'Ajuda from £374

    A Robinson Crusoe villa set back from the beach surrounded by palm trees and turquoise waters. Designer chic interiors with hints of Brazilian tradition, kitchen plus chef on request, pool, and immediate access to the beach and the surrounding tropical paradise. For families, groups of friends.

    Beach Life
    Value chic
    Luxury
    Groups
    Recommended by  -  I Escape
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