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  • Day580

    Hello from the Algarve

    January 6, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ 🌙 11 °C

    We chose to take the toll motorway from Setúbal to the Algarve as we had been told that the alternative was a long, bumpy journey over badly maintained roads. Just 3 hours and €48 later (this was because we had to pay the 4-axle rate!), we arrived at Turiscampo, just outside Praia de Luz and Lagos.

    The site certainly lives up to the great reviews with indoor & outdoor pools and jacuzzis, luxurious showers with non-stop hot water, on-site restaurant/bar & supermarket, spa & gym and daily activities that include free Portuguese lessons, yoga and archery. We could be here a while!

    On Christmas Eve, we walked into the village of Espiche to The Grapevine bar/restaurant where we joined other Brits singing Christmas carols with music provided by a brass instrument quartet. On Christmas Day morning we had a walk along the beach at Praia de Luz before returning to cook a traditional turkey roast minus sprouts as we couldn't find any!

    Over the Christmas & New Year week, the campsite bar put on nightly entertainment so there was plenty of music and dancing to enjoy. We saw in the New Year in the bar and raised a toast to all of our family and friends, while the local Portuguese danced a waltz to see in 2019.

    From what we have seen so far, the area in this western end of the Algarve looks very interesting with rugged cliffs and rock formations, sandy beaches, old towns, surfing and the mountainous woodlands of Monchique and Fóia at 902m, the Algarve's highest point. Looks like the motorbike is going to getting plenty of use.
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  • Day620

    Friends and family visit

    February 15, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    Friends Yvonne and Ross made a road trip from their home in Spain to spend a few days with us, staying in one of the bungalows at our campsite. We have been blessed with great weather this winter but unfortunately their trip happened to coincide with a cold snap. Despite some blustery and wet conditions, they were still happy to do some sightseeing and our laughter made up for the lack of sunshine.

    Not long afterwards, my sister, Audra, and her husband, Gavin, flew in from the UK for a few days. Like Yvonne and Ross, they too stayed in one of the bungalows. However, unlike Yvonne and Ross, they had much better weather during their stay. We had a busy few days together visiting our favourite places from the beaches of Alvor, up to Foia, the highest point in the Algarve, where Audra was able to buy a thick, knitted cardigan to keep her warm back home in Yorkshire.

    Our time in the eastern Algarve is almost at its end, so now we are getting ourselves ready to hit the road again. We have loved our time down here and look forward to returning again at some point.
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  • Day16


    January 10, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 16 °C

    Albufeira-Lagos ca. 50 km

    Wir sind heute wieder ein Stück weiter gefahren und sind jetzt auf dem Touriscampo Campingplatz etwas außerhalb von Lagos gelandet. Super Platz mit beheiztem Schwimmbad und alles was das Herz begehrt, allerdings auch für schlappe 20€.
    Dieser Preis ist überall normal, aber hier in Portugal schon etwas erhöht, da man viele Plätze für „lau“ oder nicht viel € bekommt.
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  • Day1

    Day 1

    July 11, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Nach dem nachmittäglichen Flug nach Faro erhielten wir den Mietwagen - erneut ein kleiner Rennwagen - erstaunlich schnell. Los sollte es gehen in Richtung unserer Unterkunft in Luz, Nahe Lagos. Über die Landstraße immer geradeaus - welche Ähnlichkeit zum letzten Trip! - sowie einem kurzen Abstecher zu Lidl - Hurra, Abendessen - kamen wir an der im Internet ausgeschriebenen Adresse an & stellten fest: falsch! Kurze Panik machte sich breit: War die Airbnb-Anzeige nur ein Fake? Nach einigen Anrufen & einem gefühlten Herzinfarkt fanden wir jedoch die richtige Adresse & wurden nicht enttäuscht: ein super schönes Gästehaus inmitten der wunderschönen Natur & dazu noch bei Sonnenuntergang. Hier können wir es uns so richtig gutgehen lassen. Auf schöne 6 Tage an der Algarve!Read more

  • Day71

    Espiche, Lagos,

    March 6 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    Ein schöner Komfortcampingplatz.
    Mit ACSI 20 €, allerdings für unsere Größe kein Platz frei. In dieser Zeit haben wir 22,5€ bezahlt.
    Für den Platz ein guter Preis.

    Eigentlich wollten wir von Serpa noch ein Stück weiter nach Norden.
    Die Wetteraussichten waren aber nicht berauschend, so haben umdisponiert und sind gleich an die Algarve gefahren.
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  • Day17


    January 11, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C


    Heute haben wir eine kleine Tour nach Lagos gemacht, einfach traumhaft.
    Am Leuchtturm ist eine sagenhafte Kulisse.

  • Day14

    At our destination - Praia da Lux

    May 28, 2018 in Portugal ⋅ 🌙 14 °C

    We have arrived at my friend Verners house in the Algarve after well over 1600 miles, the place has a high percentage of British as it is half term. It feels nice to be able to relax and not think about the next days travel.Read more

  • Day11

    Hello from Praia da Luz, still smiling

    April 4, 2018 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    Hi folks,
    It’s Wednesday afternoon and we are safely ensconced in a lovely hotel in Praia Da Luz called the Belavista. Yes, lovely vistas as the name implies ( see enclosed photo) but we had to climb up to get them! We’ve had 5 days of varied cycling. Our first 2 days were not too long and relatively flat. On day 2 we actually biked back through Faro where we started our trip. We were able to check out the Igreja(church) do Carmo) an 18th century Catholic church known for its small chapel built out of the bones and skulls of over 1200 monks. The ossuary called the Capela de Ossos or chapel of bones has an inscription above the door « stop here and think of the fate that will befall you ».

    Speaking of befalling, so far, knock on wood, no one has come off a bike without intent. Laura tried to tangle with a bus two days ago but it all ended amicably. Helen is a fiend in the round abouts( traffic circles) of which there are many. Her daily London cycling requires a certain....shall we say, assertiveness that is needed in cases of traffic circles. Overall, the drivers have been patient and courteous.
    Day 3 had more distance from Olhao to Vilamoura and more climbing. Vilamoura is quite a resort town although still quiet at the moment. Loads of shuttered apartments and lots of empty tables at the hotel breakfast buffets. Must be the weather which is not quite beach weather but it is perfect for cycling. Our hotel in Vilamoura was one of the large chains - Vila Gale and we were able to enjoy the spa! We also cycled through a very large and deluxe golf community that day. Reminded me of Phoenix with 4 courses, lovely manicured areas, palms, shopping centres etc. Mac, it looked like your kind of place.
    Laura has been right on the job as co-navigator with me and also restaurant researcher. At Vilamoura we took a different culinary route and enjoyed excellent Mexican with guacamole made at our table. Yuuuuuum. Only problem was the very large mains which none of us could finish even with our biking appetites,
    Yesterday, Wednesday was a tough cycling day. It was a long distance made longer by unexpected detours, tough times navigating through various towns including Albufeira and a relentless headwind that felt like someone pushing you backwards. Not surprisingly The wind is howling from west to east, opposite of our cycling direction and it picks up as the temp rises in the afternoon. If anyone is tempted to bike the Algarve, you might want to look at going the other direction, just saying. We finally, literally staggered into the beautiful seaside town of Praia ( beach) Da Rocha ( of the rocks). We stayed in a small B and B with a very chatty proprietor who tried to convince me that a 2night stay would be preferable. Agreed, but we have to keep moving. Laura guided us to a cheap and delicious pizza place last night but the highlight of Praia Da Rocha besides the beautiful views was the late afternoon drink at the beach.
    Today is Thursday and our ride was much less demanding and we literally breezed into Praia Da Luz and were having our post ride drink by 230. Wéve really enjoyed such varied scenery. Lots of trails near the ocean, often skirting large estuaries. Small villages and lots of countryside. We’ve also has to do some road cycling to get from area to area. Less scenic but efficient.
    Tomorrow is our last day cycling and God willing, we’ll make Sagres and then Cape Saint.Vincent on the very western tip by 3. We are getting picked up there and driven back to Loule which is mid-Algarve. On Friday we train to Lisbon. Our bike days have been fewer this trip to allow Helen and Laura time to see some other sites.
    To answer a couple of questions: weather has been fine. Better than Helen’s very pessimistic weather app forecast. The sun is out but the heat is not an issue, so perfect. Are we having any trouble communicating? No, this area relies on tourism and with few exceptions everyone has some English. Our little bit of Spanish is useful in understanding most signs. People are exceptionally friendly and very willing to help us. See attached picture at a garage yesterday outside of Albufeira and Mike’s tire troubles,
    We have not done too much site seeing although Helen, our tour guide and historian, has briefed us on each area as we pass through. But we’ll have to come back to take in the many castles, Roman ruins and the wax museum of Portuguese historical highlights.
    Must run and get ready as Laura has another great restaurant idea for tonight.
    Hope all is well wherever you are........thanks for your notes.
    Love Heather/ Mom
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