Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Conceição da Praia
Looking back towards the city from the Mercado Modelo or Forte São Marcelo, there’s no way to miss the stately baroque Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Conceição da Praia (Rua Conceição da Praia, tel. 71/3242-0545, 7 a.m.–noon and 3–7 p.m. Mon., 7 a.m.–5 p.m. Tues.–Fri., 7–11:30 a.m. Sat.–Sun., free). Built in Portugal in 1736, it was then transported piece by piece to the site of Salvador’s first chapel, which overlooks the Bay of All Saints.
The patron saint of Salvador, Our Lady of Conception, is also linked to the wildly popular Candomblé orixá Iemenjá, goddess of the sea. Accordingly, the saint’s feast day on December 8 is the occasion for one of the city’s most traditional religious and popular festas.
© Michael Sommers from Moon Brazil, 2nd Edition