Carrapateira – part 2….

…..and we are broken. Different bits of our legs have given up and we are hobbling somewhat.

At dinner, last night, we met a couple from Guernsey who are two days ahead of us on the same walking holiday. They walk, cross country ski and sail – they are not broken!

Before continuing to whine about injuries, just a few lines about our hotel, Casa Fajara. It used to be a farmhouse, has just 12 rooms and has been lovingly restored by its English owners. It is a real haven of peace and quiet and not a place we would have considered had we tried to organise this trip ourselves. The staff are warm and friendly and the freshly prepared food is superb.

Anyway, during breakfast, we reviewed two circular walks suggested for our time here and discounted both in terms of distance and uneven terrain. It was a useful exercise in comparing written instructions against map contours which we haven’t really bothered with.

Last night, we read through our Inntravel booklet and found all sorts of information which would have been of use over the last few days. There were tips on how to deal with menacing dogs, making sure you had the telephone number of the hotel you were heading for and checking written directions against the map so you knew where you were at all times. We’d taken the approach that maps are just for making the rucksack heavier!

So back to today, we decided to find our own way along the coast, following roads to minimise further limb discomfort. We followed the Carrapateira river through the sands dunes to the beach before climbing up along the cliffs.

Along the way, EU money had funded boardwalks over the cliffs and dunes to help protect fragile ecosystems, as a plus, it’s much easier than walking through mud and on loose sand.

The coastline is rugged and dramatic and you can see why it draws the surfers. We saw plenty of camper vans with surf boards in the car parks but no one actually in the sea. We thought surfers were rugged but obviously a bit of wind and rain puts them off. We came to the conclusion that they just sit in the car park and talk about surfing rather than actually trying to catch any waves.

We tried for an obligatory selfie and attempted to get the cliffs and sea in too. Obviously it’s just too difficult for us.

Despite our weary, painful legs we’d still managed to walk 8km before the town came into view. It’s certainly been easier staying on tthe road.

None of the cafes were open when we got back so we visited the Museum of Sea and Land. It was at the top of a very steep hill but had a cafe so we thought the effort worthwhile.

The museum tells the story of life as it’s evolved in the community, starting bizarrely with the story of Jonah, a sperm whale washed upon the beach in 1991.

The exhibition shows how villagers worked the land before changing to fishing. You have to wonder about the effort it took to haul the boats onto the makeshift quays and how they were constructed in the first place.

It’s clear that it’s a very hard life, with poor financial reward.

Oh, and the cafe in the museum? The curator confirmed its a publicity lie to draw visitors in! We spent ages chatting with her, covering diverse subjects as the internet and children, the impact of Portugal’s entry into the EU the Euro and the dreaded Brexit!

Quiz question of the day – What are these used for?

2 thoughts on “Carrapateira – part 2….”

  1. I am just catching up with your diary! How wonderful it is to see the blue skies as the garden here has a coating of the white stuff. Aside from bottle stoppers, have you seen some of the more unusual stuff made from cork? There are wonderfully soft purses and bags, slippers etc. A souvenir or two??? I hope the legs (especially Kim’s perfect ones!) are less sore. Enjoy your remaining time there.


    1. Most of this area is still closed for the winter so we’ve seen nothing made from cork, it’s quite disappointing. The odd cafe has been open and that’s about it.


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