To be honest, my visit to Cape St. Vincent (or Cabo de São Vicente) is one of the most beautiful experiences in my life, and a must-see when staying in Portugal’s Algarve region. Once believed to be the ‘end of the world’, today Cape St. Vincent is a tourist attraction that many tourists don’t even know about actually. The area (where you can as well find the obsolete Franciscan monastery and a renovated light-house) is largely protected as a National Park. You will surely observe countless wildflowers (including Algarve orchids) and migrant birds. But, oh my, those views! THAT AIR! The sunsets are spectacular, but that’s quite clear. And the woollen sweaters you can buy at the entrance during the day are also worth the drive.
While travelling the Algarve region in Portugal, we came across a number of pottery ateliers where the true magic happens. Algarve is known for its incredible ceramic pottery heritage, quite possibly due to the natural presence of clay here. But I guess it’s also thanks to the local people, who make this craftmanship so alive these days. In the small, but charming town of Silves, Luis and Teresa of Al-tannur Ceramica create some of the most fantastic tiles, jewellery and plates using the ancient Arab dry-rope technique. The couple doesn’t fall into well-known clichés of sunny fields; rather, they choose to depict such motifs as sharks, dogs, people’s affairs and historical scenes (most likely kept in bold colours). Meanwhile in Monchique, we’ve entered Leonel Telo‘s studio by accident. The artist creates moulds containing herbs and flowers, but as well does incredible kitchen-ware and vases. Plus, the artisan’s garden filled with lemon trees just outside his studio-slash-boutique is a beautiful addition to his works.
Al-Tannur Ceramica / Rua da Sé / Silves
Leonel Telo Ceramicas / Rua Engenheiro Duarte Pacheco / Monchique
The Southern region of Portugal, Algarve, is dubbed as the ‘European California’ by Vogue. Well, I think there’s more to it. Not that I’m judging Cali – which I haven’t been to yet – but the raw, sun-drenched, yet immensely beautiful Algarve is truly one of a kind and can’t be compared to anything else. From Alvor‘s Praia da Rocha (that holds countless caves) to the wild beaches near Cape of St. Vincent (a seperate post is coming up!), you can laze around literally everywhere in here. Nearly every city in Algarve has something that will surely amaze you. Caldas de Monchique and its healing waters; Lagos and its slightly obsolete, yet charming churches; Silves and its pottery tradition. Not forgetting about the fish market in Portimão, which you can see more of here. If you chose one of the less busy cities near the coast-line, it’s guaranteed that you won’t have to fight with a bunch of tourists to get a seat on the beach (a tip: beware of Albufeira, which awfully contrasts with the idylic character of other places in Algarve). Also, in order to discover Algarve to the fullest, it’s really worth renting a car. So, who’s coming this summer?
One of the beach caves in Alvor.
The fish market in Portimao.
Those little sea finds!
The typical street view. in Silves.
Me and my new blanket, made somwhere in Algarve.
Mum and the cathedral in Silves.
Locals eat usual snails with pepper, oregano and coffee.