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 Salvador de Bahia - Profile


Salvador de Bahia is situated in a large bay (Baia de Todos os Santos) which offers a multitude of marinas and anchorages.

Cruisers are warned not to visit secluded anchorages in the Bahia de Todos os Santos. There is a notice to this effect (June 2012) posted at the Aratu Yacht Club to advise their members - who are Brazilian.

It is also strongly recommended that, unless taking up a berth in one of the marinas, vessels should avoid anchoring in the Port area where several armed boardings and robberies have taken place.

That said, an armed boarding, assault and robbery occurred at Itaparica Island in April 2014 (see report adjacent), so great care should be taken when anchoring in this area.

The historic centre of the town, which is within walking distance of the marinas, is worth visiting for its remarkable and well restored colonial buildings. Be very aware of street crime here and use common sense (no flashy jewelry etc.).

Generally speaking, Salvador is not cheap.

Position 12°58.48'S, 38°31.23'W (Bahia marina entrance).


Read Brazil Formalities for full details on clearing into and out of Brazil.

All administration (Immigration, Customs, Navy) are less than 3Km away from Marina Bahia.

For international clearance, you need to go to these different offices in this order as the next step requires documents from the previous:

1 - Immigration, Policia Federal, on Ave. de Franca, inside a non-descriptive port authority building. Ask to be directed to the right place. The building faces the Brazilian Navy Marines barracks. 2 to 3 Km from the Marina. Both skipper and crew have to check in.

The Policia Federal office hours are 09:00-12:00, 14:00-17:00 (Mon-Fri). 09:00-12:00 (Sat). Checking in with the Policia Federal is mandatory here.

2 - Customs, Receita Federal, in the commercial port, on Ave. de Franca, 300m to the left of Terminal Nautico when exiting the premises. Some Englilsh spoken. Everything is done on a computer under the guidance from officials there (the computer service is available in English). Only skipper has to check the boat in. The boat will be temporarily imported on the basis of the skipper's lenght of stay as stamped in the passport. If the policia federal from step 1 gives you 90 days then the boat will also get 90 days.

3 - Capitania do Portos, Marina Do Brazil, in the big white building 300m to the right of the TN gates. You will have to clear at the gate. Inside the building are many different counters. Go to "F" "1" counter, on the very right after entering. No English spoken but people are reported to be quite helpful.

Be sure to wear long trousers, no caps or hats inside the military area, or you might be refused service.

The staff at both marinas are most helpful and will advise about formalities, as will Marcelo Brocchini of MB yacht services.

Note: If you are unable to stay in a marina here, a safer option for clearance is to anchor at the NW tip of Itaparica, across the Bay from Salvador. There appears to be no enforcement by the authorities for the requirement to check-in immediately on arriving in Salvador. Once established at Itaparica it is an easy ferry trip across to Salvador to complete entry formalities.

For domestic clearance you only have to visit the Receita Federal and the Capitania.

Clearing Out

If leaving Brazil, visit all the offices in reverse order. If leaving Salvador for somewhere else in Brazil only a visit to the Capitania do Portos is required.

Last updated:  July 2018

Capitania dos Portos
Tel:+55 (71) 3507-3777 ,VHF Channel 16
Situated in the white Navy complex next to the harbour. Guard will direct you after seeing your passport and a visitor pass will be issued.
Customs Office
Port Building on waterfront.
Immigration offices are in the same road as Customs.


The approach is straight forward and deep, but with surprisingly strong currents in the middle of the bay and also at the northern end. The night approaches are well marked to all the marinas. Beware of wrecks off the cape on the eastern side of the entrance to the bay.

Photo of Terminal Nautico (TN)

TN at Forte de Sao Marcello, is a good choice if you wish to be close to the city but do be aware that theft of loose items on deck can be a problen here.

Alternatively, Bahia Marina (1 nm to the east of TTNB/TN) is best if you want to leave the boat for a while, however visitor space here is limited.

A quieter spot would be NW of Itaperica, either anchorage or marina. Note however that a boat was boarded here and the crew assaulted and robbed, in April 2014 (see report adjacent). The anchorage close to the Fort offers good protection and the holding is good in mud, however there is only a very dodgy beach at which to leave the dinghy and the moorings appear to be run by the guy that does the laundry and odd jobs in the marina.

There are several marinas in this bay, Baia de Itapajipe, Riberia, north of the city. (see comment below on Angra dos Veleiros marina).

At Aratu, a small bay about 10 miles north of the city, a new marina is being built. Accessed by a well buoyed and deep channel. It will have haulout facilities. There is also a yacht club here which welcomes visitors and is a good place to leave your boat if travelling inland with easy airport connections. They advise against anchoring here.

It is also recommended not to anchor off the marinas in the port area of Salvador where a number of boardings and armed robberies have taken place.

Leaving your boat in Salvador

There are only three marinas here licensed to keep foreign boats when the owner is not in Brazil. These are Terminal Nautico, Pier Marina and Aratu Iate Clube.

If leaving your boat on its own, you will have to complete a form with the marina and have it verified with the Capitania dos Portos. You will then have to visit the Receite (Customs) to get an extension to the existing 90 day permit for as long as you want (within a two year period). On returning to Brazil you will be given a 90 day stay for you and the boat from your date of entry. It is likely the marina will also want you to employ a local person to take care of the boat in your absence.

Last updated February 2018.

Bahia Marina
Av. do Contorno N 1010 , Salvador de Bahia , Brazil CEP 40015-230
Tel:+55 (71) 3320-8888 Fax:+55 (0) 71 3322 7244 ,VHF Channel 16, 68
Marina staff reported to be very helpful. All facilities, WiFi, restaurants, good security. Chandlery. Floating fuel dock (visa accepted). VIP room with fast Wifi, TV, printer, computers, books. Limited space for visitors.
Boatyard with 40 ton travel lift, many repair services available.
The area just outside this marina can be dangerous and it is advisable to use a taxi even for short distances, day and night.
Marina Angra dos Veleiros
Location 12°54.689'S, 38°29.564'W ,
Av. Largo da Ribeira - Ribeira, Salvador - BA, 40420-260, Brazil,
Tel:+55 71 3316-5626
Visitors' berths, water, electricity, WiFi, bar and restaurant, workshop. Chandlery and provisions close by.
Beware of shallows near the entrance. Exposed to strong NE winds.
Marina Pier Salvador
Location 12º54.82’S, 38º29.47’W. ,
Av. Porto dos Tainheiros, 1704 Ribeira, Salvador
Tel:(+55) 71 3316 1406 Fax:(+55) 71 3316 1406
Located in a sheltered bay north of the city.
All facilities, laundry, WiFi, chandlery, restaurant, small shop. Nearby bus into the city. Owner speaks English and French. At LW - 1.4m in the approach channel.
Since 2013 the marina has had a travel lift and offer repair services for boats on the hard (monohull or multihull) up to 15 ton maximum length 40 feet. Living on board and doing own work is permitted. (see comments below about this marina).
SOCICAM - Terminal Nautico
Avenida da Franca , s/n Commercio , Salvador de Bahia, Brazil. CEP 40.010-010
Tel:+ 55 (71) 3241-9783 / +55 (71) 3326-1868 (for reservations)
The marina has floating docks, with a potential swell running snubbers are recommended. 78 berths. Max length 75ft. Max depth 3.95m.
All facilities, WiFi/Fax/Tel/email services, bar and restaurant. Laundry collection service. Security. Many staff also speak English and French.
Close to the Lacerda elevator and the business area with banks, post office, cyber cafe, shops and restaurants.
Cheaper than Marina Bahia.
Staff helpful and friendly.

Yacht Clubs

There are a number of yacht clubs in and around Salvador, and repair facilities at some of them are very good as they cater for a large local boating community.

Aratu Iate Clube
Rodovia Paripe – CIA, , S/N, Simoes Filho
Tel:+55 071 32167444
Half a day’s sail from Salvador, Aratu Iate Clube is the biggest nautical club in Bahia, offering fully serviced berthing and club facilities. Very convenient for airport connections. It is recommended to arrive here during daylight. The approach channel is narrow and the yacht club is not well marked on chart plotters. Furthermore there are some small marinas that are not charted at all that can be quite confusing at night.
Bahia Yacht Club
Sete de Septembro 3252 , Salvador BA , Brazil CEP 40130 001
Tel:+55 (0)71 3336 9011 ,VHF Channel 16, 68
Excellent facilities including restaurant.Swimming pool on site. Safe and very pleasant surroundings to pass the hot days. Visitors welcome.
The club runs a ferry. Advisable to be on board at night and not leave yachts unattended for long periods.
Sailors for Sustainability
Sailors for Sustainability says:
Jul 25, 2018 12:34 PM

We stayed at Socicam - Terminal Nautico for nine days in July 2018. Harbourmaster Dominique was most helpful: he explained where we could get groceries (Perini on Vasco da Gama Avenue has a great selection, upmarket), where it was save to walk (basically where there are other people around) and what we should be aware of (no walking to and from the elevator after dark). When we needed to have our mast taken off, he was instrumental in getting everything organised, so we could get a crane to the marina and a welder to get the repairs done in the parking area of the marina. Be sure to agree to everything (work and price) with the repairmen beforehand.

As we gone through immigration in Fernando de Noronha, we only had to visit the Receita Federal (300m to the left of Terminal Nautico when exiting the premises), where we were assisted by a young woman who spoke some English and guided us through a computer program. Next up was the Capitania, 300m to the right of the TN gates. The "Capitania" building is one of many buildings on the Navy premises and inside it are many different counters. Go to "F" "1" counter, on the very right after entering.

A local sim-card can be bought (and registered with your passport) at the TIM shop inside "Shopping Lapa", a large shopping center in the "Lapa" area. We found it safe to walk there from the elevator (towards the right upon exiting the elevator, along a street lined with shops and street vendors). The area is well worth visiting to get a flair of city life outside the renovated old town.

Val Ellis
Val Ellis says:
Feb 20, 2018 10:19 AM

Posted on behalf of Dan Stroud

As per usual no response to vhf call in. Went to Termino Náutico (TN) just by the ferry port and close to the old quarter of the city.
The guy that runs it, Dominique, is very helpful, speaks English, French and Portuguese. There's also a guy called Marcelo who I think would be very helpful for repairs etc.
The floating pontoon is old and noisy but perfectly adequate. Stern to mooring.
The police office is tricky to find and I'm sorry to say I forgot the exact location but I left details with Dominique at TN.
Customs: no English spoken but they are happy to use google translate.
Dos capitanía: no English spoken but helpful and friendly.
I left my boat in TN Salvador and flew to Argentina. I had to visit the Customs and dos Capitanía to leave the boat, and then Customs again upon my return. Fairly straightforward, if convoluted!
Most people seem to think that Salvador is dodgy, but I disagree. It's a busy hot and intense city, but keep eyes open and all is fine.
Cost at TN was about 13 euros per night. there's a small Walmart near the hotel Sheraton.

gaero says:
Jan 11, 2017 06:12 PM

On the way back from Itaparica we did not want to go to the bustling places in Salvador. A friend told us to go to Itapagipe peninsular to the marina Angra dos Veleiros.
It is a sailor-owned place with visitors spaces. Located at S12 deg 54,689 ´/ W 038deg 29,564´.
It is located on Av. Largo da Ribeira - Ribeira, Salvador - BA, 40420-260, Brazil, Tel: +55 71 3316-5626
The have some 35 slips and a workshop also that visitors can use. Nearby are two ship chandlers and a tools and equipment alley where you can get almost everything. There is also a bom pressio (Walmart) nearby, so ideal to stock up the boat for a longer journey.
The entrance to the marina is easy for catamarans yet tides have to be watched for keel boats as there are shallow depths near the entrance. The marina is exposed to waves and NE winds stronger than 20 knts. We stayed five days and got everything done that we needed to take care of.
A visitors slip with 110V/220V shore power and free water costs BRL 1,50 per foot per day. There is a restaurant that opens for lunch. The internet works well. All in all a nice quiet place to be.
SY Coral Trekker

csquared says:
Jul 16, 2016 07:23 PM

We stayed at Pier Salvador for more than two months. While the price for the marina is quite reasonable, the service we received was not quite as good as we had hoped. Several repairs had to be done and almost none were performed to our satisfaction. Ok, Brazil is not Europa, but nevertheless you'd expect a craftsman to at least admit that they don't have any experience. At one time i just had to ask the carpenter to leave the boat and it took me three days of work to repair the damage he had done. The more frustrating is, that when we came back from our home vacation in Germany we had to find a big dent in the rigging screw cover and also a line missing. We had secured our boat the the boat next to us and they obviously left with our line and in the process damage our boat. Nobody in the marina claimed to have seen anything. No help or reimbursement for the damage and loss. So be carefull leaving your boat at this marina unattended!

gaero says:
Jun 21, 2016 02:48 PM

I am in process of buying a boat under a foreign flag while it stays in Brazil and would like to reflect on my experience so far.

The boat arrived from Cape Town via St.Helena to Salvador and anchored in the Bahia Marina. The people are very helpful. Julia, one of the receptionists, even speaks French, Portugese and English.

If you want to leave the boat in Brazil and leave the country, even for a short trip, you can not stay at Bahia Marina. In Salvador there are only three marinas licensed to keep foreign boats when the owner does not stay in Brazil. These are Terminal Nautico, Pier Marina and Aratu Iate Clube. I neither wanted to leave my future boat in either Terminal Nautico nor Pier. Aratu is a good place to leave the boat.

The owner had to fill in a form, confirm it with the Aratu I.C. and the capitania dos portos. Then with this we went to the Receite (Customs) to get an extension of the existing 90 day permit for as long as we wanted (within a two year period) without being in the country.

The AIC asks for a local person to take care of the boat. I had the pleasure of being introduced to the manufacturer's representative in SSA that made things much easier.

The costs at AIC are 1 BRL per foot per day.

After returning to Brazil I will have 90 days to stay from my date of entry, for me and the boat.

AIC is a tangential drive around SSA to the airport. So convenient if leaving or arriving in the country. My suggestion if you want to leave Brazil while you boat stays in Brazil, move staight to Aratu. Make sure you arrive during daylight. The channel is narrow and the yacht club is not well marked on the chart plotter. Furthermore there are some small marinas that are not charted at all that can be quite confusing at night.

toni_alomar says:
May 08, 2016 08:23 PM

Marina Pier Salvador ia a helpful place. They repair my Volvo MD50 motor. It was a really dificult reparation. The moorings and the restaurant are in good conditions. M congratulations Sandoval.

Awelina says:
Mar 07, 2016 05:31 PM

Bahia Marina is, as stated, very helpful and with good facilities. However as of March 2016 it has no laundry, and no swimming-pool (and seemingly never has had one). It currently has rather few spaces for visitors being nearly full of very large motor-yachts.

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