What is it, what is it? It has turtles, but it’s not a zoo. It has lots of swimming pools, but it is not a water park. It’s full of uncles, but it’s not family. It’s Praia do Forte, in Bahia! The destination in the municipality of Mata de São João, just an hour’s drive from Salvador, makes the children happy. For starters, you can get there quickly from the airport of the capital of Bahia, you don’t even have to go through the city. The road is good, with no bumps on the road, perfect for that beautiful post-flight nap.
When it comes to accommodation, this northern part of Bahia has the gift of combining beautiful nature with the structure of recreational resorts. The only one in the village is Tivoli Ecoresort Praia do Forte, next to the Sapiranga Reserve, a place for walks with forest and river.
At any age, everyone will be enchanted by the animals of Projeto Tamar, which also organizes several sea turtle releases in front of the resorts in the region, to involve the guests. At the headquarters in Praia do Forte, with the gradual return of activities during the pandemic, there are news for visitors
These include a new tank, an easy-to-visit app, and a shorter version of Biologist for a Day. It has been adapted to last two hours, tailored for children to feed and bathe adorable shells. At the exit, go to the store to guarantee a nice and useful souvenir. With ticket and product revenue, Tamar can fund the project, which currently has six visitor centers in the country.
In addition to turtles, Praia do Forte receives humpback whales in mid-October until October. The observation season begins in July, a good way to help preserve these mammals. Traveling for animals takes an average of five hours. It is recommended that you look for one of the partner agencies of Projeto Baleia Jubarte, which works to preserve these giants.
Inaugurated in 2004, the Bahian unit has life-size animal replicas and a guided tour, but you can also see the interpretive panels and the skeleton of an adult humpback whale.
The castle in Bahia is not missing. In ruins, Garcia D’Ávila tells the story of the region, in a museum and in a presentation with projections on the raw walls of 1551. From the top of the hill, there is still a beautiful view of the sea. This sea, in the part near the village, is calm and forms natural ebb pools, on beaches like Lord’s.
Children love to swim among the small fish, as well as take a walk with the unusual means of transport of the destination. Along the main street, from the entrance to the village to the Church of São Francisco de Assis, it is common to see families on quadricycles, not with motorbikes, but with pedals.
Between tours, a stop to eat fish and seafood and cool off at Sorveteria da Ribeira. Traditional in El Salvador, it opened its Praia do Forte unit shortly before the pandemic. The regional aromas include an audience hit: green coconut, with a taste of that soft part inside the fruit mixed with its water.
Resorts for children
If the inn is outside the center, you can return with a tuk tuk, rocking in the seats of colorful strollers pulled by motorcycles. This is one of the transport options for those who are also staying at Tivoli Ecoresort Praia do Forte, next to the Sapiranga Reserve. Buggy tours and motorized quad bikes are organized by the hotel agency and also by others in the destination. Vehicles run on forest trails and there is a break for swimming in the river and an option for a canoe ride.
With 287 rooms and 4 villas with a 30-hectare swimming pool, Tivoli Ecoresort is located in front of a quiet sea, which can be enjoyed from the balcony of the accommodation units or from the lawn, full of sun lounger kiosks. Built in the higher parts of the earth, the pools also show the blue, often framed by coconut trees.
At a hearty and varied breakfast, it is easy to find something to please the little ones. In addition to fruit, various breads, eggs, juices and coconut water, there are regional options such as tapioca and sweet couscous. Rates always include half board, including dinner. The themed menu changes every evening, between Spanish, French and Brazilian cuisine, for example.
Located in the middle of the garden, Careta Careta Club has a playroom and dry and wet playgrounds for children up to 12 years old – up to 3 years old, the tutor must be with them. Treasure hunting and burning are popular with young travelers. With four cups for children, the hotel offers a personalized menu option for lunch and dinner and babysitting services (paid separately).
As they grow older, boys and girls are potential candidates to try and play on the beach as well, hiring water services such as banana boat and stand-up paddle.
Further south, on the coast of Bahia, Vila Galé Marés follows the same guidelines for excursions with children. With 576 rooms, the resort has tennis and social football fields, a gym, eight restaurants and six bars, as well as swimming pools, a sauna and Satsanga Spa.
All inclusive, the resort has swimming pools and monitors to entertain the little ones. At Clube Nep, children between 4 and 12 years old have fun with the proposed activities, such as contests, painting, games, dance and music.
How much does it cost
- Tivoli Ecoresort Forte Beach: Rates from R $ 2,010 for two people, including breakfast and dinner. Children under 2 do not pay; from 3 to 11 years the fee is charged. Banana boat and stand-up paddle, from R $ 50 per person. Babysitting service: at least three hours, at R $ 28 each.
- Vila Gale Mares: Four nights for a couple and a child up to 12 years old, from R $ 5,400, all inclusive.
- Tamar Project: Wednesday / Sunday, 11: 00/17: 00. R $ 35 – student, R $ 17.50; up to 5 years, free; Family passport for two adults and two children, R $ 96. Biologist for one day: adult, R $ 120 (1h30); child, R $ 220 (2h).
- Humpback Whale Project: Tuesday / Sunday, 9: 00/17: 30 12 R $ – half price, 6 R $.
- Castle Garcia D’Avila: Friday / Sunday, 9/18, with video mapping – 4th and 5th, at the same time, without projection. 30 BRL (student, 15 BRL; up to 5 years, free).
- Portomar: The humpback whale watching trip costs R $ 300 per person; children between 5 and 10 years old pay R $ 200. The tour to the Sapiranga Reserve has four daily departures. It costs R $ 370 per buggy for up to three people or R $ 300 for two people on a motorized quadricycle (only R $ 270)