Ridin’ Shotgun, Underneath the Hot Sun

Portugal’s Algarve region has a variety of inland and coastal hiking trails; we set out to tackle as many as we could while sharing a rental car with Bill and Grace.  Just north of Lagos, which paired nicely with an en-route trip to the chandlery, we found the Barragem da Bravura Trail winding ’round the…

Wheelin’ through Algarve

Southern Portugal, the Algarve region, has charmed us with scenery, history, and gastronomy.  We explored the region for several days by car with our friends, Bill and Grace. At Ponta de Sagres, we visited the Sagres Fortress and Lighthouse.  The lighthouse looked a bit puny up close, after having watched it flashing for hours upon…

The New (never improved) Alvor Anchor Club

We set sail for Portugal from the Azores, basically the only location the weather would allow, and traveled for 7-days of unpleasant upwind pounding.  Arriving at Portugal completed our second Atlantic crossing.  We returned to Portugal’s southern coast, an area which already held fond memories for us and still has much to explore. At Portimao,…

Sao Miguel

At Ponta Delgada, Sao Miguel our first bit of excitement occurred right on the docks with a long overdue reunion with sailing friends, Matt, Jessica, and Georige (s/v Elements of Life).  We’d sailed in company with Matt and Jess during our first year cruising; it’s been about 5-years since we parted ways and we had…

Terceira

It was difficult to say goodbye to Sao Jorge; we’ve made lifelong friends there, so of course we will return!  An 8-hour sail in light winds brought us to the island of Terceira. At Angra do Heroismo, Terceira we were able to anchor with our refreshed windlass and enjoyed life on the hook for a…

Faja Coffee

There is a hidden gem on the faja of Vimes on Sao Jorge; one of many, I’m sure, as we continue to unearth the wealth of this island.  We took a drive out to the faja, sat back and relaxed in the quiet scene, while we sipped on luscious cups of home grown, hand processed…

“People, Let’s Go!”

Sao Jorge had quickly become our home away from home.  Bill (s/v Calico Skies) stayed for an entire week before returning to his wife and boat in Lisbon, and together we visited Sao Jorge’s highlights.  Between excursions, we enjoyed the company of Filipe and his extended family.  Around the harbor and downtown in Velas, we…

Faja da Caldeira de Santo Cristo

We began our exploration of Sao Jorge by visiting the remote Caldeira de Santo Cristo, which can be reached by foot or by ATV.  We began at Topo, down the mountain on the north side of Sao Jorge. Phillip planned to pick us up at Faja dos Cubres so that we could hike through, Cubres…

Pico’s Vineyards

  We’d watched the many phases of Pico Alto (clouded/clear/rainy/clouded) from our slip at Horta; the highest volcanic peak in the Azores at 2351m (7713ft).  We’d pondered whether to hike Pico Alto.  The trek requires an early start because the mountain only allows a certain number of people per day.  Without a great anchorage for…

Caldeira at Faial

I wouldn’t have imagined that a caldeira hike would really be entertaining, ’round a circular trail keeping the same view for the entirety, but the caldeira at Faial proved me wrong.  The view was not only stunning, but it did change as we moved ’round the caldeira; shapes morphed as if we were flipping through…