Portugal
Tavira Municipality

Here you’ll find travel reports about Tavira Municipality. Discover travel destinations in Portugal of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

27 travelers at this place:

  • Day24

    Instead of taking a Yellow (or Red or Blue) Bus we decided yesterday to book ourselves in to a guided walking tour of the centre of Lisbon with Take Lisboa. So, at 10.30 we were at Largo Chiado to meet up with Afonso Pereira and 16 other people for a 2.5 hours guided tour. Our tour was in English, naturally, but it was interesting how many nationalities were represented - Canada, USA, Germany, Sweden, Malta and Australia.

    For the next two hours we walked around, stopping at various points of interest, and hearing stories about many different things. I really enjoyed his commentary about the bloke who is head of the movement to return the monarchy. He has headquarters in Lisbon, and wants to be the King. Afonso said that whenever there is a slow news day he will be interviewed by the press on whatever topic comes to mind, and he is usually good for a laugh.

    The big earthquake of 1755 devastated Lisbon. Many thousands died then, and the person put in charge of the cleanup was very mindful of disease. He ordered bodies be taken on a barge and taken well out in the river and dumped, an action that saved many more from death. However, he clashed with the Catholic Church over this because it did not constitute a Christian burial. Prior to the earthquake he had been put in charge of urban renewal, and his town planning ideas were way ahead of the times. It turned out that some of the new areas, perhaps seedier ones, survived the earthquake because of his radical building ideas, whereas the thousands who piled into the cathedral for safety died when it collapsed.

    The tour ended in the square where the 1506 Easter Slaughter took place. About 1900 Jews were killed, burnt, or hung by a wild crowd, incited by a couple of Dominican friars who promised absolution for the sins of the past 100 days if one killed a “heretic”. This was a dark day in Lisbon and Portugal’s past.
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  • Day24

    After our tour we went for a long walk, mainly along the river heading for the ocean. It is quite a big river, and has a working port. After going as far as the big new bridge, Pont 25 de April, we turned north and wended our way up the hill, through quiet neighbourhoods and parks.

    We finished the day off with a lovely meal in the little cafe just around the corner at 22 Rue Bempostinha (we were staying at No 7). The menu changes from day to day, and you get what you are given. Today was watercress soup followed by bread with goats cheese and honey mustard. It was just delicious, and of course it was washed down with house red and white. We even had desert. We chatted to the owner for a little while, a lovely young lady. She really regards this place as her living room which she shares with her neighbours and people like us. A lovely way to finish our time in Lisbon.Read more

  • Day25

    Time to move down to Tavira

    October 27 in Portugal

    It really doesn’t take long to pack up and move if you are organised, and so it was that we left our little apartment in Lisbon fairly early. Getting out of the parking station, at Euro14 a day was expensive, but at least the car was safe.

    Once out of the car park though it became really, really difficult. Because so many of the streets are close together it becomes difficult to know which one the GPS is telling you to take, and so we went round and round a few times. In the end, at one intersection, I looked and looked and pretty well closed my eyes and put the foot down and hoped for the best!

    Eventually we ended up on the A2 and things calmed down. The drivers here are pretty good, and much better mannered than Australians. However, they do drive much faster. On the freeway, signposted to 120kph, I had to put cruise control on to 135kph before other cars only passed me slowly. At 120kph they flew past, and quite a few of them had to have been doing 160kph. Interestingly we didn’t see ONE equivalent of our Highway Patrol or roadside radar, and only one time when there might have been an accident.

    Tavira was 300kms down the road, and about 230 of those kilometres were on the tollway. Ouch! $32 later we were free to travel on the local roads, only to find that they photographed your number plate and indicated that a toll was due. Because we don’t have an e-tag and have a Spanish registered hire car we have no idea what will happen because there is nowhere to pay.

    We arrived in Tavira and found that the streets where we had to go are really, really narrow, and the GPS struggled. Eventually, by reversing back up a one-way street I was able to turn into our little one. I nearly took the side of the car out though, and it was only because Robyn saw it happening and screamed that we avoided an expensive sound.

    We were really early, so headed down to the riverside for a coffee, and then sent a text to Carla letting her know we were here and would meet her there at her convenience. 20 minutes later we met her at the apartment. It has been well renovated/built, and is very tidy and well equipped, but soooo small! The main point is that it has a conservatory, which is accessed via a spiral staircase, and we were bemused by it. It is almost pointless, unless you are having a fight and want to spend time apart!

    Anyway, we unpacked, went and bought some groceries, and settled in for the night.
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  • Day26

    Sunday in Tavira

    October 28 in Portugal

    While having breakfast I noticed that the time on my phone was an hour earlier than my watch. It took a few minutes to work it out, but Dr Google of course was able to advise that daylight saving had ended early this morning. We are now 11 hours behind NSW and 10 hours behind Queensland (I think).

    Tavira is a mixed sort of place. Where we are is obviously fairly old, while a few blocks away you can see quite modern blocks of apartments. One travel guide said that it had a population of around around 11,000, while Wikipedia said it was around 25,000. After a walk around we tend to think that the latter is nearer the mark, as there are quite a few residential areas of significant size. Alas, some of them look destined to be the slums of the future.

    We headed over the river first for our morning coffee (for those who know me, this is code for one coffee and one hot chocolate). It was quite cool in the shade so we found a sunny cafe and sat down. Just after ordering another coupe came along and as all other tables were taken we invited the to join us. It turned out to be the best thing we did all day. They were Canadians who are in Portugal for a while, staying a few kilometres away and day tripping to Tavira. They were so interesting to talk to. He is retired, and doesn’t look a day over 50, but when he said that he had been a portfolio manager for high net worth individuals it made sense! Furthermore his wife had not worked while raising their two children. In many ways we had quite a lot in common and it would have been nice to see more of them, but such is the way with holidays. They even paid for our drinks, a nice gesture.

    Our walk pretty much ended our day, with reading, Scrabble, grocery shopping and generally doing nothing the order of the rest of the day. I managed to cook omelettes this evening in our “galley” with some success, only because I am not too tall.
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  • Day27

    Monday in Tavira

    October 29 in Portugal

    We were up early this morning, at least relatively early, so that we could get a good walk in before lunch.

    We headed out, at first looking for a French bread shop that we saw on Saturday on our way in, and soon found it. Naturally it was closed until Tuesday, but at least we know where it is now.

    After following the main road out of town for a few minutes we turned north and headed through another residential area. This soon petered out into agricultural land and a gravel road which was lovely. While we had no real idea of where we were in general we were headed towards the ocean. The soil here is very fertile, and as we found elsewhere the Portuguese like to grow things. We counted 12 different crops.

    Potatoes, pomegranate, oranges, limes, lemons, chokos, passion fruit, beans, olives, peppers, avocados and grapes.

    Eventually we came to a sealed road that went to our left and which wandered through a huge holiday villa complex. It made anything we have stayed at look positively small by comparison. Being the end of the season there was not much activity there but it was well kept. Amazingly, there was a plaque next to an olive tree, claiming that the tree was at least 2000 years old, and it had been kept as part of the development.

    To get to the beach you have to walk along a path, over a bridge, and then for quite some distance, and we decided that this was not necessary for Australians so turned left instead and headed back towards Tavira, through the village of Santa Luzia. This little village is apparently the world capital of octopus although how you would know that, and where they get them from is anybody’s guess.

    By the time we arrived back home we had done around 12 kms, a fair effort, and one that needed rewarding with a coffee and pastry.

    When in a foreign country it is usual to try the local cuisine, but ....... as seafood features highly in that list we have tended to eat plain fare. So it was this evening that we had a pleasant time at a little pizza place where we enjoyed the food and the wine. Our waitress for the evening was a Bulgarian wrestler, and looked as though she could handle herself very well!
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  • Day28

    Tuesday in Tavira

    October 30 in Portugal

    It was slightly cooler this morning when we headed out for a walk. Being very original in planning our walks this time we decided to do yesterday’s walk in reverse.

    Santa Luzia was pretty much the same as it was yesterday, very attractive on the building side of the street, and very unattractive on the river side, with the tide out. We kept going until we reached the walkway, walk bridge and railway line to Praia Do Barril, or Barril Beach. Unlike yesterday when we decided that we didn’t need to see a beach, this time we decided to go in. It was about a 20 minute walk to get to the beach and associated restaurants. Originally it was a tune fishing village, or community inhabited for about four or five months of the year, but this ended up being uneconomic so it fell into disrepair for a while until revitalised as a tourist spot. The beach is nice, and there is plenty of opportunity to eat. It must be busy in the summer season but was pretty dead today.

    On the sand dunes is an Anchor Cemetery, where old anchors used in the tuna fishing business were laid to rest.

    I mentioned the train line earlier. For those less inclined to walk all the way to the beach there os the opportunity to take a little train, saving about 15 minutes walking. This train also doubles as a freight train because there is no road to the beach and its buildings.

    The return trip was slightly different to yesterday, but still included a long walk along gravel laneways with fruit and veggie gardens either side. Because of our trip to the beach we ended up doing about 13.5 kilometres, quite a good effort, and was rewarded with coffee and waffles.

    Our evening was very quiet, with dinner and an episode of “Vera” on British TV.
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  • Day29

    A wet day in Tavira

    October 31 in Portugal

    After four weeks of almost faultless weather we finally had a day of rain - all day. Given the size of our apartment that presented a bit of a problem, because there is so little room to do anything other than read (or play Scrabble).

    Nevertheless we did manage to get out twice, once for coffee and the second to buy supplies for dinner for the next two nights.

    On our first foray we could hear music, band music. Naturally I headed in that direction and we found that the Police Concert Band was playing in the big covered area on the river promenade. I don’t know whether it was a state-based band or more local, but they were very good. They were playing mainly to a lot of primary school children. For the past two days we have seen an increased police presence, with cars, vans, taped off areas, and personnel, so I assume that they were on a big PR exercise.

    We finished the day with toasted sandwiches, wine and Scrabble.
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  • Day30

    Thursday in Tavira

    November 1 in Portugal

    After yesterday’s rain and general overcast day we woke up to bright sunshine, a good day for a drive.

    We picked up our car from the public car park where it had been parked for the last four days and headed north to Faro. This is the capital of the region and has a long history, as does everywhere here I might add.

    After parking the car out of town we headed in to the Old Town. We had been alerted by Carla that today was a public holiday. She said it was a Bank Holiday, but we think it was more to do with All Saint’s Day, an important day in the Catholic calendar. Whatever, every church we went to was closed, and the main museum in Faro was also closed.

    We walked around, looked at was to be seen, had a coffee and then headed out of the Old Town to the more modern area. One thing we wanted to see was Igreja do Carmo / Capela dos Ossos, or the Carmo Church / Chapel of Bones. It was closed because of All Saint’s Day. While we could here an organist rehearsing we were told that there would be nothing on until 9pm on Friday evening, so sadly we didn’t get to see all the bones of the old monks.

    After leaving the Chapel of Bones church we meandered around to the local cemetery. What was really, really interesting was (a) the number of people there, and (b) the recent headstones. It appears that they “recycle” their grave sites, because we saw a whole section in this old cemetery with headstones from 2013 to 2017. Their family mausoleums were interesting too. We saw one that was open, being tendered to by an older couple. we could see 4 normal sized coffins and two little ones. How sad! It seems that All Saints Day is one where people go to cemeteries to put flowers on their loved ones graves, clean the headstones, etc. as we saw this at two other places as well.

    Back to Tavira where we didn’t do a great deal until we went out for a drink before dinner. The bar was almost empty but those who were there were from England. There is something funny about being in a Portuguese bar listening to Elton John and Poms!
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  • Day31

    Our last day in Tavira

    November 2 in Portugal

    We are sad that we are to leave Tavira tomorrow, but we have done pretty well everything we would like to do here. Walking around the town, walking in the countryside and wandering around the bars, cafes, restaurants and shops have filed our time in.

    Today was one for a big walk, and we did over 13kms, mainly on rural gravel roads where things were very quiet.

    Yesterday Robyn had seen a poster that caught her eye. It was part of a series of doors in and around Tavira, capturing their beauty and uniqueness. I suggested that we try and find some and photo them and see if we could replicate them, but this afternoon we walked and took photos but could not do as well. This is pretty natural, given that the person who took the photos Robyn saw knew what she was doing. We ended up buying one and have it in a tube and hope it will get home okay.

    We had decided some days ago that Friday evening would be the night we go out to dinner, after days of self-catering. It was to a plain cafe that we went, where we had already had a few coffees. It was really nice and quiet and we had a nice meal. The young lass serving us knew very little English so there was a mixup in wine orders. Anyway, after a chat to the main waiter we ended up with a memorable evening.
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  • Day7

    Tavira, Portugal

    February 23 in Portugal

    Today, we decided to take the 2 1/2 hour drive to the far eastern edge of the Algarve, to a beautiful town called Tavira. It is literally a few short miles to the Spanish border. This is a sleepy, relaxed town where we had the best lunch (cod in a creamy potato sauce). After lunch, we strolled the narrow streets and stopped for a coffee sitting by the river. Heavenly! The storks were nesting as we made the drive down. Pictures are not great, as they were shot from the car but if you look closely, you'll see babies in one of the nests!Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Tavira, Tavira Municipality, Тавира, Ταβίρα, تاویرا, タヴィラ, ტავირა, Тавіра, 塔維拉

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