In literary terms ILHÉUS, 400km south of Salvador, is the best-known town in Brazil and the setting for Amado’s most famous novel, Gabriela, Cravo e Canela, translated into English as “Gabriela, Clove and Cinnamon”. If you haven’t heard of it before visiting Ilhéus, you soon will; it seems like every other bar, hotel and restaurant is either named after the novel or one of its characters.

The coastline around Ilhéus is broken up by five rivers and a series of lagoons, bays and waterways. Much of the town is modern but it’s still an attractive place, its heart perched on a small hill overlooking one of the largest and finest-looking beaches in Bahia.

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