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25 x Enjoy the Algarve! Because there´s so much more to the south of Portugal than just laying on a beach.

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Thursday, June 8, 2017, In : General 
                                    

The Ria Formosa is home to the largest population of sea horses in the world. The yearly Bike Meeting in Faro attracts about 35.000 bikers. In Silves, they make wine out of oranges. With coasteering in the Costa Vicentina Nature Reserve, you jump off 12m cliffs into the Atlantic Ocean. The Algarve’s cuisine isn’t only about sea food, but also includes locally farmed porco preto. Mountain bikers from all over the world train in the hills of São Brás ar...

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The Best Beer of Portugal

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Friday, May 5, 2017, In : food and drink 
                   


Although the Portuguese drink a lot more wine than beer, they still consume an average of 49 liters of beer per person per year. In general most people drink their cerveja straight from the bottle, and that is the way it tastes best, preferably freezing cold! If you prefer a draft beer, you have to ask for an Imperial (regular size glass) or a Caneca (large glass mug). 

There are bottles of 20 ml (mini) and 33 ml (media).  Most Portuguese drink the mini´s, a success among c...

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Football, more than just a game in Portugal

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Monday, May 1, 2017, In : way of life 
                     

Football is omnipresent in Portugal, you might even speak of "footballization" of the Portuguese society. Here, in the Algarve, the football-a-holics are often divided between the clubs of Benfica and Sporting (or should I say Sporting and Benfica?). Anyway, the third important national club, Porto, is out of the picture here.

A little bit of history 
Football was brought to Portugal in the late 19th century by Portuguese students who returned from England. The first match ...

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Making the Move to Portugal

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Sunday, March 19, 2017, In : General 
                     

When it comes to moving to a new country, there is a lot that must be done. There is probably a lot that you’re moving for, as well. Portugal is home to many activities, events, beautiful places and friendly people. Moving here can be a great step for anyone who wants a new life in a country where people are friendly and there is plenty to do day or night. 

Why Move to Portugal

Portugal is, simply put, one of the most fascinating countries to live in. Whether you are look...

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Saint Martin - Chestnuts And New Wine

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Sunday, November 8, 2015, In : way of life 
                       

Saint Martin, the very popular Saint who became Bishop of Tours in France in the year 371, was buried on the 11th of November 397. According to the most widespread variation of the legend, Saint Martin cut off half of his cloak in order to offer it to a freezing beggar. As he faced a long ride in a freezing weather, the dark clouds cleared away and the sun shone so intensely that the frost melted away. Such weather was rare for early November, so was credited to God's i...

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The Chocolate Casino

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Saturday, October 17, 2015, In : way of life 
                       

If you visited Portugal before, you probably will have noticed these machines on the counter of local bars and cafes. These gambling machines are to the locals what the Casino is for the city dwellers. There are machines that give you a chance on winning some extra cash, there are others that have more or less useful items to win, such as pocket knifes, lighters etc.  

                       

And than you have my favorite kind of gambling machine:  the chocolate casino! A...

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Hike, Bike or Ride The Wild South-West

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Thursday, September 17, 2015, In : holiday tips 
                       

Along the beautiful west coast of south Portugal, the Rota Vicentina, offers more than 400 kilometres of hiking, biking and horseback riding trails.  On their new website www.rotavicentina.com you find a planning tool for trips and interactive elements including videos.

There is the Historical Way, the Fishermen’s Trail and several Circular Routes to choose from. The route is fully marked in both directions, and can be traveled independently and in total security.  The...

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Experience Some Adventure In The Algarve

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Sunday, July 12, 2015, In : holiday tips 
                       


Of course it is nice to spend some time relaxing, sunbathing and sightseeing during your Algarve holidays, but did you know there are also some great adventures to be experienced here?

We all know about surfing and there are some really great locations to do this, especially on the west coast. But there are also some adventure sports that you maybe have not heard of before, such as coasteering and stand up paddle boarding (SUP for short).

SUP consists of standing and bala...

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Portuguese Olive Oil - Amongst The Best Of The World

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Wednesday, July 8, 2015, In : food and drink 
                             

Portugal is not a giant producer of olive oil like neighbouring Spain, but the traditional production of olive oil goes just as deep here.  During the last couple of years Portuguese producers have improved the quality and polished their brands to shine among the world’s best olive oils.  

Now some of the world´s best olive oils are coming from Portugal.  Brands like Oliveira da Serra, Saloio and Gallo have some oils that won prestigious international awards. An...

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Wines Of Portugal

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Monday, June 22, 2015, In : food and drink 
                       

Speaking about wine, most people do not make a direct link to Portugal. The wines from this country are 
relatively unknown in the world, but nevertheless Portugal is the 7th largest producer of wine in the world!

Besides the white, red and rosé wines, we have a few extras here: There is port wine (a wine fortified by adding Brandy), there is Madeira (fortified wine from the island of Madeira), we have Moscatel (a liquerous wine from the Setúbal Peninsula) and then ther...

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Marina of Vilamoura, Marina of the year 2015

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Sunday, May 24, 2015, In : General 
                       

The Marina of Vilamoura in the Algarve, conquered the premium Marina Of the Year 2015, which distinguishes the best marina in the world and is considered one of the Nautical Tourism Oscars, awarded jointly by The Yacht harbour Association (TYHA) and the British Marine Federation (BMF), both from the UK. 

The prizes were awarded according to the results of an online poll done exclusively by the owners of vessels which visited marinas in 2014. In a statement, Vilamoura Mar...

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Eucalyptus in Portugal - A Very Hot Item

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Monday, May 18, 2015, In : nature 

                       

One after the other, long and heavy trucks loaded with eucalyptus logs, drive back and forth. Because of their weight they destroy the streets. They transport the logs from the eucalyptus forests, such as the ones in the Monchique area, to the cellulose processing industry in the middle of the country. "Normal" trucks are not allowed on the street when their load is this heavy, but these giants have a special license.

Eucalytus is the most common tree in the country. 25....

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Nature in the Algarve from January till December

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Saturday, May 9, 2015, In : nature 
                       


Nature is very present in the Algarve. There is a great biodiversity here and even in the middle of the summer, there is always a green background, wherever you look. One of the things that I instantly loves, was the smell here. The air is filled with aromas of wild herbs and flowers.  Nature has something new to offer every month:

January:  oranges are ripening, almond trees blossom.  
February:  Mimosa flowers
March: pear and plum blossom, lavender flowers, frogs, toats ...

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Algarvian Chimneys

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Friday, April 24, 2015, In : what to see 
                       

When you visit the Algarve, one of the things you will notice are the typical chimneys (chaminé in Portuguese) on the roofs. They come in many different shapes and sizes, are often very ornamental and they are definately the main symbolic element of the Algarve.

Many people believe that they are a legacy of the Moors who ruled over this part of the country for so many years, because the chimneys resemble minarets or even miniature mosques. As a matter of fact nobody kno...

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The Best Tips For Eating Out in Portugal

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Friday, February 20, 2015, In : holiday tips 

                        


Eating out is one of my favorite pastimes here in Portugal. It is not only a nice social event with tasty food, but eating out in Portugal is also very affordable. At least if you look a bit further than the busy tourist traps. There are many restaurants, even in the smallest villages, and the majority of Portuguese eateries will rarely disappoint you.

For those of you who are not so experienced with eating out in Portugal, here are some practical tips and advices.

1. On...

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Save The Gecko !

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Saturday, November 8, 2014, In : nature 
                                
                                

This is a gecko, or in Portuguese: a osga, a harmless and very useful type of lizard that lives in all kinds of warm areas in the world.  It is famous for its special toe pads, that enable it to walk on smooth and vertical surfaces and even to cross ceilings with ease.  A gecko is unique in its vocalizations, making chirping sounds in social interactions with other geckos.  They are extremely useful to people because they feed on...

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Portuguese For Tourists

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Thursday, November 6, 2014, In : holiday tips 
                                           


For a pleasant holiday in Portugal, it is not absolutely necessary to speak the language, but it is definitely very much appreciated if you can use just a few words of Portuguese. Here you will find a first-aid kit to  Portuguese phrases that will impress the locals.

  1. Greeting. It is always polite if you can say hi in Portuguese. In the morning, you say BOM DIA, if it is afternoon it´s BOA TARDE and after the sun went down, you say BOA NOITE. If you f...

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Lupini Beans - Tasty Little Bites

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Saturday, October 25, 2014, In : food and drink 
                                                               


The first time I was served these yellow beans in the local café with a beer, I did not know what they were.  In the meantime I learned to appreciate these "Petiscos" (Portuguese for "tasty little bites") as a delicious snack, especially since I found out how healthy they are!

Lupini beans are the yellow legume seeds of Lupinus genus plants, that grow all over Europe and are a common snack food in Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, G...

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Traditional Pig Slaughter - Matança do Porco

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Tuesday, October 7, 2014, In : way of life 
                             

Since medieval times, many rural Portuguese families raise pigs for domestic consumption.  People in the countryside were self-sufficient, providing for their own vegetables, fruit and meat.  Because the activity of pig slaughter has been practiced during many centuries, nowadays, the pig and its meat belong to the national identity. 

But the slaughtering of a pig is more than providing for food, it is also a social happening, where families, neighbours and friends...

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How To Order Coffee In Portugal Just The Way You Like It

Posted by Marianne Hoesen on Tuesday, September 2, 2014, In : food and drink 
The Portuguese are proud of their coffee. And not without reason! Some of the richest coffee growing countries in the world are ex-colonies of Portugal. Although the sound of the coffee grinder and the espresso machine can be annoying at times, it also promises a great quality coffee is nearby.

The Portuguese generally do not drink their coffee at home, but rather have one in the local café or pasteleria. Here they can order their beloved coffee, just the way they like it.  If you want to ha...

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About Me


Marianne Hoesen Born in the deep south of The Netherlands, I moved to the central Algarve in 2007, together with my partner and 2 dogs. In the meantime we added some goats and chickens and are living a peaceful life in the rolling hills of the rural south of Portugal. I invite you to read a bit in my blog and to leave a comment afterwards. Also check out the holiday accommodations mentioned elsewhere in this website.

 

 
Weersverwachting
Algarve
Meer weer in Silves
Algarve Portugal
café Portugal, bica
Esteva, rock rose, Algarve
sun, beach, Algarve
real cork real wine
beach Algarve
folklore dance Algarve
chicken piri piri