Albufeira,Portugal: Part 2, Safari trip to the countryside

Comments 16 Standard

Hello everyone and welcome back to my brief Portugal series.

I spent four nights in Portugal in November, as you may have read in my last blog, that the initial portion of my trip didn’t quite go as planned. However, I made up for it during the remaining two and a half days, and I’m very happy to share the places I managed to visit during this short time.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Please read my Disclosure page for more info

I went on a safari trip to the Algarve countryside

It was the third morning in Portugal on the day of my safari trip, and I was super excited because the day before I had managed to leave my lazy relaxing for a half hour and go downstairs to the reception to book something exciting to do for this day. It had been recommended to me by one of the lovely ladies after I told her what I was hoping to see.

I’m really glad I made the decision to go on this trip since it taught me a lot and showed me things I never would have seen otherwise. I had such a unique and genuine experience travelling around the Algarve countryside. Seeing old villages and learning about rural traditions and agricultural life as well as the making of cork.

Let the adventures begin!

I was greeted at 9 a.m. outside my hotel by my tour guide for the day. I shamefully forget his name now, but he was a bundle of joy. You know when you meet those people who are so energetic and happy, and you just gravitate towards them? Well, he was that kind of person.

There were already another six tourists in the jeep, and I was the last person to be picked up, which was a little awkward as they all stared at me as I approached the jeep. Luckily enough, they were all super friendly and gave me a hi and a wave as I stepped into the jeep.

We arrived in the countryside in as little as 20 minutes, and the scenery had changed so drastically, in fact, I remember thinking how much it had changed within 10 minutes of the journey. We were surrounded by nature and lots of greenery, which was apparently unusual for this time of the year, and everything was so calming and relaxing, well, apart from being tossed around on the bumpy ride.

What I really loved about this trip was that as we learned about all the things Portugal produced, which was pretty much everything, we drove through all the trees producing the products and could often smell everything, and our guide would often stop and take things from the trees for us to smell, such as rosemary, tea, lavender, etc.

The first stop

Our first stop was the millhouse. I can’t really tell you much about the house; all I know is that it is owned by a German man. None the less, it was nice to see it and explore the nearby land.

The views were stunning up here.

Castelo de Paderne

Our next stop was Paderne’s Castle, one of the seven castles on the Portuguese flag.

There isn’t much left of the ruins, but it’s amazing how there’s anything left at all considering it was built from earth and sandstone and sits up high in the hills overlooking the Quarteira River.

The Romans first occupied this location in the second century, but the Berbers built the current building in the 12th century.

The castle had been battled for by Christian reconquistadors against the Muslim creators, which had been an ongoing battle until 1248, when the castle was captured by Portuguese forces, who brutally massacred all the inhabitants. It was abandoned in 1858.

Wine tasting, or perhaps whisky, or whatever it was

Our next stop was wine tasting, or at least that’s what we were told and was on the leaflet, but to be honest, I’m not really sure what we were tasting that day, and I’m still no wiser now, but I know the strongest one was firewater, known as Aguardente de Medronhos, which is a strong spirit made with a traditional fruit called medronho.

Medronho fruit

On our way to the distillery, we had the opportunity to eat this fruit because our tour guide had plucked some from a nearby tree. It tasted similar to a strawberry but was more subtle in flavor. It was lovely.

We arrived at the distillery, which has been in the same family for over 100 years. As we arrived, the owner looked surprised. It turned out he wasn’t expecting us, but he kindly set up the tables for us.

It was a really nice experience tasting all the jam, honey, and spirits. The firewater was so strong that my entire insides felt like they were on fire!

I don’t usually like honey, but this honey was so pure and tasted so good that I just had to purchase some. I also got some bee pollen.

The village of Alté

We got to go through a couple of villages, including one where we stopped for a small cafe break, but the village that stuck out the most to me was a little village called Alte in the northwestern part of Loulé tucked away in the mountains.

Unfortunately, as much as I would have loved to have walked around here, we were running out of time, so we’re only really able to see what we see in the moving jeep, and the rough ride through the streets made it difficult to capture pictures and videos. But I managed to snap a few photos, although not the best.

Because of where it is located, the village has kept its authentic and traditional Algarvean style. The streets are so narrow, and the houses are simplistic and white washed with a touch of colour and decorative elements owed to its past Arabic motifs. And there are lots of impressive chimneys here, and I couldn’t help but notice how tiny the doors on some of the houses were.

We briefly got to visit and have a quick stop at Fonte Grande and Fonte Pequena

It was a place in the past where women would come to get clean water for laundry, but now it’s used as a place where people come to swim.

The iconic flag

We also got to see the iconic Portuguese flag painted on a hillside. It was painted here to support the Portuguese football team during the Euro 2016 games, which they went on to win.

This pretty much was the end of the tour. I hope you enjoyed the blog this week.

Thanks for visiting 

Stay blessed 🙏🏾 

Natalie ❤️

16 thoughts on “Albufeira,Portugal: Part 2, Safari trip to the countryside

    • Thanks for your comment. I’d never heard of Medronhos before this trip. It was really fun to discover and learn about new things here. Thanks for visiting.


      Liked by 1 person

  1. That sounds like a wonderful tour! I’ve heard great things about Loule but I didn’t make it there when I was in the Algarve last year. Too bad you didn’t have much time to explore that area.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I never got the chance to visit more of Portugal outside of the big city, so your post on Algarve is a refreshing one, going to show that there’s a lot more to the country than just the big cities like Lisbon and Porto! The countryside looks absolutely fantastic, and those Medronhos look so bright and delicious; they do look a lot like strawberries, and I presume just as sweet? Glad you made up for your lackluster first night in Portugal!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.