Museu de Arte Sacra da Bahia
From the Praça Castro Alves, a fork in the road splits Avenida Sete de Setembro into two. If you take the lower road (Rua Carlos Gomes), the first street on the right will bring you to Ladeira de Santa Teresa. This steep little alley plunges down to the magnificent 17th-century convent of Santa Teresa de Ávila, which was once occupied by the Ordem das Carmelitas Descalços (Barefoot Carmelites Order).
Overlooking the sea and surrounded by shady courtyards, its tranquil church, cloisters, and monks’ cells are part of the Museu de Arte Sacra da Bahia (Rua do Sodré 276, tel. 71/3243-6511, 11:30 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., R$5). One of the most important, not to mention impressive, museums of sacred religious art in Brazil, its collection of 1,400 pieces includes a wealth of paintings, sculptures, icons, and furniture from Bahia’s glorious colonial past.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition