Getting Here and Around
Most destinations around Salvador can be easily reached by car. To visit the Discovery Coast, fly to Porto Seguro (723 km [450 miles] south of Salvador), and then rent a car to explore other beaches and attractions. For the Cocoa Coast, you can fly directly to Ilhéus, 460 km (286 miles) south of Salvador.
Distances in Bahia are significant, and the most efficient, comfortable, and often cheapest way to get around is by plane, with internal flights connecting the main hub of Salvador with smaller airports in Ilhéus (the gateway to the Cocoa Coast and Maraú Península) and Porto Seguro (the gateway to the Discovery Coast). There are also direct flights from São Paulo to these destinations. Main carriers in the region include TAM, GOL, Azul, and Avianca.
The bus system in Bahia is extensive and safe, reaching across the state and connecting major and minor towns. The main companies are Aigua Branca for longer journeys and Cidade Sol for shorter ones.
Renting a car is one of the most affordable and enjoyable ways to explore the region, giving you the freedom to hop between beach towns and avoid expensive transfers. Road conditions in Bahia are generally good; roads are often empty and will take you through some incredible scenery. While international companies such as Hertz and Avis do exist, the best options for price, quality, and customer service are local companies Movida and Localiza, which have offices in all of the region’s airports. Best rates can be found and compared via www.rentcars.com.br. If you're planning to drive long distances, look to rent a 4x4 or a car with a decent engine in order to be able to overtake trucks safely on the single-lane highways, especially in the rainy season, when unpaved roads can prove a challenge.