Our Algarve

Portugal’s Algarve region can be SO much more than the predictable deck chair, jam packed beaches and being surrounded by other foreigners. Unfortunately the Algarve has gained a reputation for  being the Magaluf of Mallorca, the Fuengirola of Spain.

But there is lots more to the Algarve than the resorts within a thirty minute radius of Faro airport. There is the COSTA VICENTINA!

In his own words: heaven on earth!

Where the Portugese coastline shoots north, more or less at the old “set-sails-for-the-world” departure town of Sagres, Costa Vicentina starts revealing its jaw dropping beauty. We’re talking soft, golden sand hidden between craggy cliffs of dark slate. Here and there you get rivers meandering down to the coast surrounded by the most pristine sand dunes imaginable. Paradise on Earth? Sure!

Some may hate me for revealing this spot. But then again, it’s a bit off the beaten track, the beaches can get quite rough and I believe this is enough to deter the masses. You need a drop of bohemia in your blood to flip flop your way along the nearly deserted beaches. Or a desire to unleash your inner surfer.  This is my kind of place! And definitely my kids’ summer paradise. This is somewhere they feel free, wild and they do in fact – like Costa Vicentina’s slogan says – breathe nature.

Surfer dude in the making

We wrote an article aimed at families traveling to the Costa Vicentina for Norway’s main newspaper VG last year (2009). The text is in Norwegian but the photographs have no language barrier http://www.vg.no/reise/artikkel.php?artid=571893

A great overview of Costa Vicentina can be found on this link http://www.portugalvirtual.pt/_tourism/algarve/aljezur/index.html

Personal favourites of ours are Odeceixe, Aljezur and Arrifana.

The film industry has discovered Portugal's hidden beach gems, and we ended up having our ice creams in the middle of a film set

Portugal still has that old fashioned feel

The main reason to come to Costa Vicentina is the unspoilt, truly spectacular beaches

It's nice to be in the Algarve and still feel that you're alone on the beach

Philip teaches you how to surf in a week!

Surf boards make for an atmospheric still life

Aljezur is one of the Costa's larger villages, still there's hardly any traffic

This blog post is featuring in the 5th Lonely Planet blogger’s Carnival about KIDS AROUND THE WORLD  http://glenniacampbell.typepad.com/silenti/2010/07/blogsherpa-blog-carnival-kids-around-the-world.html

It is hosted by Glennia Campbell over at http://glenniacampbell.typepad.com who is more than used to traveling with her nine year old, and knows all too well the benefits of a child globetrotter.

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