Bacteria have evolved a variety of mechanisms to invade eukaryotic cells and survive intracellularly. Once inside, bacterial pathogens often modulate their phagosome to establish an intracellular niche for survival and replication. A subset of intracellular pathogens, including Brucella abortus, Legionella pneumophila and Porphyromonas gingivalis, are diverted from the endosomal pathway to the auto-phagic pathway. Once within the autophagosome, each in some way presumably modifies this compartment to establish an environment necessary for its survival. Transit into autophagosomes represents an avenue by which to escape host defences. In this review, we examine the biochemical and morphological evidence for the survival of some bacterial pathogens by replicating within an autophagosome-like compartment.