02 Sep Summer Holidays – Sagres Portugal
Hello… I am back….
I am sorry for being away for so long… but with the COVID situation I did not really know what to write about…
I felt was completely inappropriate to write about partying, traveling and bubbles while we see a lot of sorrow and struggle… (Also, during most of this period, there was zero partying, zero travelling and LOADS of bubbles …. at home)… but I also felt inappropriate to write about COVID… I have nothing to add… only to say that I hope we learn something out of this!
But… I was very active on Instagram… boared my followers with, cooking, motherhood and did loads of probono work to help local businesses … so out of you who follow me on Instagram… you saw how much has happened over the last months… including a trip to Portugal… by car!
It has been ages that I haven’t taken a trip by car for soooo long… from home to Porto (our first destination), it is 1,600 km… so about 17 hours. Despite everything that was and is happening, we chose to travel anyway, so that we could enjoy the summer with least exposure possible.
Portugal seemed the best option, for several reasons… first, I have family who lives there… so I could go to their place… also, I love the country and the Algarve is a great destination in the summer!
Our trip was broken into 2 posts… This one about Sagres… and another one about our stay at the Six senses hotel at the Douro Valley…. so, now let’s go to what is important… the post!
Sagres is a small fishing village at the very end of Portugal… well, at the very end of Europe….
It is quite something that such a small surfer’s paradise has an important role in the world of today! It was in Sagres that a Portuguese king in the 14th century, founded the Navagation school of Sagres which studies allowed the sailors such as Colombo, Vasco da Gama and Pedro Alvares Cabral to cross the Atlantic and other oceans to discover the new land and shape the world of today!
Sagres is a surfer’s paradise! Its strategic position shielding the North Atlantic sea winds, allows the formation of a dramatic and extraordinary coast line, with all sizes of bays… The common denominator is a constant wind which forms the waves turning the beaches into the perfect spot for surf learning and practicing!
I would not be able to explain the reason but Sagres is not the most touristic place of the Algarve… Thanks God! Maybe the constant wind, waves presence and temperature of the water…. it is colder than in other parts of the Algarve… explains the reason of this quasi untouched paradise…. which compared to other parts of the same region, it could be considered almost unexplored…
For this trip and due to the current world sanitary situation, we chose to book a hotel where we could have the closest Homey environnement possible… some kind of appartment which we would have a hotel service, but also kitchen to allow us to eat in. We found this at the Memmo Baleeira Hotel.
Spread over the cliff just next to the Sagres Port, the hotel answered to all our expectations. Beautiful, clean and with strict anti-COVID measures, we felt that we found exactly what we had looked for.
The hotel appartements were spacious and well equipped and we took as many takeaways from the hotel delicious pizzaria as we could.
Another plus is that the hotel has a surf school and a bike rental within its premises. We booked our classes with the hotel school who has also the service to take its guests to the beach where the class takes place… This is a great option as parking in some of these beaches can be an issue, bearing in mind that the beaches are situated at the bottom of very high cliffs.
Beach hopping… this is what we have done when it came to Sagres… There are so many beautiful ones to visit… I will now name a few of the ones we visited… lucky us that some of the beaches were relatively empty… and we could afford to have it almost for us.
Aljezur – a small village about 1 hour from Sagres… very much worth the visit… The beach at the bottom of the cliff is called Praia da Arrifana… a total paradise!
A bit closer to Sagres, there is another special small village called Vila do Bispo… From there, one can explore two special beaches … Praia da Cordama, where we took our surf classes and Praia do Castelejo… here the sea forms natural swimming pools within the rocks… an spectacular creation from nature that no-one should miss.
Also, about 40 km from Sagres, there is a bigger and more touristic town called Lagos. I confess that we were not in the vibe for bigger venues… so much it is that I dont even have restaurants to recommend, as we went to none… But I really wanted to go to Lagos to be able to visit the Gruta de Benagil. Benagil is a small town in the Algarve Coast, but the cave can only be reached by sea. The place is so spectacular that it is worth every penny to get there. We rented a private speed boat ( I queried myself 1000 times if I had done the right thing…. as I had my whole family on it and the sea was rough)… the Capitan was an experienced man who took us not only to Benagil but to see several other caves and beaches… we loved it!
Another two places not to miss are: The Sagres Fort and the Sagres Lighthouse… in both places you will see the wonderful and dramatic Portuguese coast line and one of the most amazing sunsets in the world… add some space to your cloud storage, as your photo album will increase as dramatically!
I will be back on more on Portugal but this time about the wonderful poetic Douro Valley!