With the religious tourism sanctuaries in Bahia among the highlights, the 16th Expocatólica ended last Sunday (21), at Pro Magno – Centro de Eventos, in São Paulo. The fair of Catholic products and services gathered around 22,000 participants, from Brazil and abroad, in four days of activities. The stand of the Department of Tourism of Bahia (Setur-BA) was one of the most popular, where the sanctuaries of Santa Dulce dos Pobres and Nossa Senhora da Conceição da Praia, in Salvador, were represented; Bom Jesus da Lapa, in Caminhos do Oeste; and Nossa Senhora das Candeias, in the region of Baía de Todos-os-Santos.
“We promoted the natural beauties, culture and religiosity of the Caminhos do Oeste tourist area, with many people and companies looking for information on our routes and attractions, in addition to the sanctuary. Setur-BA has been a great partner,” said culture and tourism promoter João Paulo Lelis, representing Bom Jesus da Lapa.
According to the operator Claudemir Carvalho, which sells religious tourism packages in the south of the country, Bahia is the favorite destination for Catholics. “The search for Bahian expressions of faith has been a differential. We send groups of 30 people to Salvador every 15 days. Bahia is undoubtedly the most popular Catholic route”.
Obras Sociais Irmã Dulce (OSID) tourism coordinator Rosa Brito celebrated the interest of the event in the story of the first Brazilian saint.
“We receive around 50,000 people per month at the Sanctuary Complex, in Largo de Roma, with the exception of Espaço Santa Dulce, which moves the airport from Salvador. The numbers are expected to increase, because at the fair the demand was enormous, both from the faithful and from agencies in different regions of Brazil”.
Famous – Bahia’s stand at Expocatólica was visited by Father Antônio Maria, who became known as a singer and has already performed in duets with Roberto Carlos and Fafá de Belém, among other artists. The space was also visited by actress Myrian Rios, who had worked for Rede Globo, who was a Catholic missionary and devoted herself to theater.
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