All along the Algarve!

From the SW corner we have travelled east through the Algarve. We confess to thinking this would be the least enjoyable part of our trip, with images of endless tourism development. Well we were so wrong. The development is concentrated in the cities of Lagos, Albufeira, Porto Maio and Faro, but in-between are beautiful beaches, stunning coastal scenery, and, amazingly, some superb wetlands with great birdwatching.

We played tourist to visit the glorious rock formations at Ponta da Piedade. Wow!

Then a hot but splendid cliff top walk from Praia de Marinha to Benagil, followed by a wonderful night at Lagoa dos salgados. We were parked at the lakeside and our only companions were the myriad of birds including flamingo, glossy ibis and spoonbill. Sunrise across the lake was enjoyed while still in bed… lazy birdwatching indeed! 

Sunday saw us walking to Praia Salgados, then meandering to the riverside town of Santa Luzia for an Octopus based lunch.. their specialist dish.

 Another walk then onto Camping Rio Formosa to get organised ready for the journey home. Good campsite where we met lots of people who had just arrived and would not go home until March! Standing in shorts, in the warm sun, it seemed like a jolly good idea!

Our last day in Portugal was a cracker. We visited the charming town of Tavira before meeting Luiz, the owner of Pernatur, who runs guided birding walks. He took us for a superb walk around the Rio Formosa wetlands near Faro. The highlights were an Osprey with a huge fish, purple swamp hen, and a Little bittern, which posed briefly before slipping back into the reeds. A great end to our stay in Portugal. Then a quick getaway to drive across the border for a lovely visit with Maria-Luisa in Seville…..   and a real bed for the night. 

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