OK so you've traipsed around the Pelourinho, you've visited the Farol, sunned yourself on the beach and bought all your souvenirs at the Mercado Modelo. A few eclectic suggestions, beyond the normal well worn tourist path.

Graça and Vitória museums. Not exactly "off the beaten path" for locals or brazilian tourists, but certainly for foreigners, these two small and wealthy neighboorhoods host four Arts Museums, one of them world-class, in less than one kilometer of easy, flat and safe walking. Close enough from Porto da Barra beach to go walking uphill, it's better to take a bus and, two or three stops later,  there's the first place in Sete de Setembro Avenue: Museu de Arte da Bahia (Bahian Art Museum), with an unimpressive permanent exhibit, that is balanced by excellent temporary showings from the most important local artists (Calasans Neto, Genaro de Carvalho, Carybé, among others). After that, across the street, a few meters on Barra's direction, there's Carlos Costa Pinto Museum, in a fantastic 19th century mansion that keeps Costa Pinto family's collection of tapestry, porcelain, jewelry, pottery and furniture from all around the world. From Carlos Costa Pinto's gardens, and also from the upper floor, you can see Paulo Darzé art gallery, in Dr. Chryissipo de Aguiar street. There, temporary exhibits just after the entrance prepare the visitor for the permanent collection, with fine paintings from local and brazilian artists (besides those mentioned above, there's also Siron Franco, Rescala, Genner Augusto, Floriano Peixoto, among many others), all avaialable for sale, and every detail can be explained by its pleasant staff. Leaving de Aguiar street and getting back to Sete de Setembro Avenue, a hundred meters ahead there's Largo da Vitória (Vitória Square), where you can see a traditional church on the right side, and a McDonald's on the left. Heading past McDonald's, through Graça Street, a few hundred meters away, there's the last and most important sight: Palacete das Artes (Rodin Bahia Museum), another late-19th/early-20th century mansion built by Catharino family, transformed in a museum that, in a partnership with french authorities, keeps one of the most important, if not the most, Rodin collections outside France. 62 original pieces from August Rodin, the worldwide icon of french sculpture, will be there for three years, until at least 2012, and were lent directly by Rodin Paris Museum. Four bronze sculptures are permanently on the gardens and the sight also hosts contemporary arts exhibits in another room.

Clube Fantoches is one of Salvador's great institutions, dating back over a hundred years. Home to regular Sunday afternoon samba parties as well as a mix of other music styles, it's a regular haunt for many soteropolitanos old and young. Clube Fantoches is located in Rua Democrata, just off Largo Dois de Julho.  Entry is gained by handing your money through a small hole in the wall. Often street vendors will set up impromptu bars outside the club to serve thirsty patrons, queuing to get in. The Largo itself is famous spot, Castro Alves, one of Brazil's great poets lived in the neighbourhood and Bahia's other great literary son, Jorge Amado, set much of his famous novel Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands, here. It's easy to find, if coming from Barra, take any bus running along Av. Sete de Setembro and get off at Praça da Piedade  walk down either Rua da Forca or Rua do Cabeça, cross Rua Carlos Gomes and the Largo is straight ahead. It's possible to walk from the Pelourinho but any bus running down Rua Carlos Gomes will pass the largo. Tip: If you are looking to send a long email or chat on line with the folks at home then there are a multitude of very cheap cyber cafes in the area, charging between one and two reais per hour. There's one right next to the video store and a couple more in the large office building that houses the hardware store A Sergipana on the ground floor. If you are wondering where many of the wooden beads and other trinkets sold by vendors on the beach come from then you can source them for a fraction of the price at a couple of stores on R. Carlos Gomes almost opposite the largo.

Dona Zuzu, patroness of Aconchego da Zuzu is almost as venerable an institution having recently reached her own century. Her restaurant, now run by her very numerous descendents serves up good food quite cheaply and the courtyard is the setting for live music on the weekends. Aconchego da Zuzu is located on Rua Quintino Bocaiúva in Garcia. Best to cab it here, it's not a long trip  and it's a steep walk up hill from the nearest bus and probably safer at night.

Not neccesarily off the beaten path but a few alternate beaches to try....

Praia do Bugari. Located in Ribeira, this isn't a beach for swimming but for eating and hanging out. Perenially popular with the locals it has a  concentration of  good and very reasonably  restaurants in addition to innumerable baraccas along a long strip. Ribeira gets very lively on weekends and it's a fun and easy place to enjoy something of the local scene. The view back towards Bonfim, especially in the late afternoon is lovely.  Try the lambreta, clams in their shells served in a bowl of delicious clear broth. It's usual to be provided with a glass to drink the excess broth. Ribeira is also host to one of Salvador's most famous ice cream parlours. Buses marked Ribeira can be caught next to the bottom of the Elevador Lacerda and terminate near the tip of the peninsula. Keep walking along the water in a counter clockwise direction and you will come to Praia do Bugari.

Boa Viagem. Again not  necessarily the place for a swim, although many locals do, it's a great people watching spot and a relaxed spot just to hang with a beer and maybe watch a bit of volei or football on the beach. Nestled next to Forte Monte Serrat on the Itapagipe, peninsula, it's predominantly a local scene. A cheap meal and satisfying can be had at any of the baraccas on the beach. Buses can be caught in the largo next to the church of  Senhor Bom Jesus dos Navegantes a five minute walk back towards the city.

 Praia de São Tomé de Paripe is most certainly off the beaten path for the average visitor. Located in the far north western corner on the outskirts of Salvador, next to the Base Naval  it's not without its charms. Some visitors may know it as departure point for Ilha de Maré. Frankly, the beach at the departure point is better than the one you will arrive at on the island and the eating choices wider. The view is slightly marred by the jetty to a local concrete works but the water is clean, the beach uncrowded and it's a broad and firm swathe of sand, ideal for some beach football.  It's a long bus ride out, followed by a short walk to the beach but it's potentially rewarding for the curious visitor as you pass some of Salvador's poorest neighbourhoods and a revealing glimpse is afforded of living conditions outside of the main tourist areas. Just make sure you catch the bus to Paripe, not Periperi ;-)

Calçada to Liberdade. You have been and down the Elevador Lacerda, probably been on one of the plano inclinados that leads up from Comércio to the Pelourinho or Santo Antonio but did you know there is another way to access the upper city from the lower? The third plano inclinado, or cog railway can be found in Calçada and leads up to Liberdade. Calçada itself has little to recommend itself to the tourist, apart from the small railway station but the trip up to Liberadade gives you a new set of vistas over the Cidade Baixa and some of Salvadors northern suburbs. Liberdade itself is an interesting and historic area,originally the location of a number of  quilombos, refuges for escaped slaves. For the single best view of the Cidade Baixa and the Itapagipe Peninsula walk or cab it from the largo where the plano inclinado terminates in Liberdade up to Shopping Liberdade. There are open balconies on the second and third floors that give wonderful vistas across the bay and over Feira de São Joaquim.  If you wander down hill from here towards the historic centre you'll pass through the neighbourhood of Lapinha, which is not without it's charms, especially the cute little largo with its oddly un- Brazilian church and eccentric sculpture. Even further down is the memorial to Maria Quitéria the heroine of Bahian Independence celebrated annually on 2 July.

A Death in Brazil. Want to get a sense of the geography of life's end? Visit one or more of Salvador's cemetaries to get a bit of history and a sense of how the afterlife is commemorated in Brazil.

The British Cemetary is located just up the hill from Porto da Barra. It's a comfortable 10 minute walk from the largo, past the Igreja Santo Antônio da Barra on the Corredor da Vitória (also known as Avenida Sete de Setembro). Apart from boasting the most impeccably manicured lawn in the whole city, the cemetary contains the remains of many foreign visitors, who stayed permanently, stretching back over 200 years. Not just the British but a few Americans and folk from elsewhere, there is an interesting collection of Jewish headstones being restored on the lower levels. For the historically minded it's a fascinating spot, there are even some dead from the Anglo-American War of 1812, landed after a battle in the bay. For the rest it'a a good reminder that you aren't the first gringo to have trod these shores and the views from here are lovely. The gate is often closed, even when the cemetary is nominally open. Wait a few moments and attract the attention of the guard, who will let you in. It's free to enter but as the place is run on the basis of a very small grant a donation will be appreciated.

Cemitério do Campo Santo.  Where the rich and famous rest in Salvador. Located in Alto das Pombas this is not only rich in history but features  some very ornate and indeed some quite bizarre tombs, including one topped by a blue glass pyramid! For those familiar with Italian style cemetaries or who have seen the famous La Recoleta in Buenos Aires, it will feel eerily familiar. The cemetary is well kept and has a number of information plaques scattered throughout to aid the visitor. You can get to the cemetary by taking a bus marked Federeção from Campo Grande or the more intrepid may care to walk just be aware it's a steepish climb uphill.

Cemitério de Quintas do Lázaros. Actually three cemetaries in one, including the Cemitério dos Estrangeiros. This is one of Salvador's more typical cemetaries and gives a glimpse of the end to mortality of the more common folk of the city. As such it makes an interesting contrast to the other cemetaries mentioned here.  It's also the resting place of one of Salvador's famous sons, the university professor and urban guerilla leader Carlos Marighela, murdered by the military dictatorship in 1969. Marighela was originally interred in an unmarked grave in Sao Paulo but was later re-buried here. His modernist tombstone is etched with a tribute by Jorge Amado, one of Salvador and indeed Brazil's most famous writers. Anyone intending to visit should catch a cab. Tip: Watch out for the stonemasons carving and inscribing headstones on the street as you proceed up the hill.