Some helpful tips on how to get around

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Portugal's beauty has inspired a lovely lady who shares from her heart some verses, celebrating the Portuguese experience.

Enjoy her poetry here



For a complete change of scenery, take a drive up the narrow winding road to the mountain village of Monchique. This excursion will make you believe that you are no longer in the Algarve, but instead in a tropical jungle amidst flourishing mountain valleys. Half the fun is soaking in the scenery along the way. The mountain sides are covered with lush vegetation and terraces of orange and lemon groves. You may see a farmer busy at work picking oranges or selling them at his roadside stand. Stop in and check out the variety! Notice the scent of the towering lean eucalyptus trees that grace your route in abundance.

Little villages dot the roadside and we have ventured into a few interesting shops selling pottery and cork crafts. Slow down around the many hairpin turns and be ready for the oncoming cars that don't.

Monchique has some great little cafés with tasty pastries and snacks, some of which are only found here. Try the chicken piri-piri (BBQ chicken with a flavourful slightly spicy sauce), a specialty of this area served up in the little restaurants. On a Sunday afternoon you can observe families strolling down the paths of the beautifully manicured and terraced public garden. What a great place for a little picnic or to sit quietly and take in the surreal beauty of surrounding landscape.

This excursion made for one very special and spiritual Christmas day for us.


A couple of good sized shops in the town of Monchique have a great selection of cork and leather goods in addition to the pottery. These shops are nestled within the tiny streets, so take a good walk through the town and you will surely stumble upon them. Take a moment to stop into the old church, one of our favourite spots, as you roam up and down the hills of this old town.

If it is a clear day, drive up past the town of Monchique for about 10 minutes and you will reach the top of the mountain for some unbelievable views all the way to the coast. The terrain at the top is rugged, so bring comfy walking shoes.

: From Lagos, drive east on the A22 Faro/Lisboa 4-lane motorway and take Exit 5 Monchique to a roundabout. From the roundabout take the Monchique exit and follow the signs to Monchique. Look for signs for the N124 and take the N124 north to a split in the road, then go left and your ascent to Monchique begins. You will pass Omega Park Zoo enroute. Drive past "Caldas de Monchique", which is a small town that many people confuse with the town of Monchique. Keep driving and until you reach Monchique a few minutes later.

Driving time from Lagos: 45 min.

parking: In Monchique there are many parking spots in the main square. If you cannot find a place there, just drive up towards the top of the mountain and there will be spots where you can park and walk back down to the town centre.

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