Old Quarteira meets new

Quarteira is one of our ‘go to’ places for a lazy stroll.  It’s a bit of an anachronism, with high rise hotels and apartments dominating the seafront.  Stroll along the lengthy promenade in one direction and you come to the Fish Market, with a little harbour beyond.  The ‘smart’ resort of Vilamoura is on the horizon.  High rise of a finer calibre.  Stroll back the way, and where the promenade ends you have a wonderful expanse of beach.  This way lies Vale de Lobo, and the truly ‘smart’ set.  I don’t really belong in either, but I don’t mind to take a look, now and then.  I rather liked the exhibition of fishermen, erected by the sea.

But the real purpose of today’s post is to share with you a little of what Quarteira was, ‘back then’, before the developers arrived.  A series of signboards have been placed along the front, flashbacks to the 60s, and I found them fascinating.

The backs of the signs indicate their situation on the seafront.  I haven’t kept to order, nor have I included all of them.  A couple I find particularly poignant.  Life wasn’t easy back then.

I don’t know how much of the small print you can read, but one of them tells of the ‘Vestigios Romanos’.  Offshore the remains of a Roman settlement were found.  Now that’s antiquity!  But let’s end with a smile.  Wednesday’s are market days and I have a fondness for the cheese stalls.  This character was peddling his wares.  Salad, anyone?

Linking this to Becky’s Past meets Present.  I hope she likes it.

61 comments

  1. Amazing info about vestigios romanos! Now you’ve given me a new research area. Haven’t heard of that at all!

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    1. Brilliant! 🙂 🙂 I should have photographed in more detail but we would have been there all day! Certainly worth looking into, and next time you’re over there go and have a look. Quarteira’s not inspirational but it could be interesting to dig about. Take your bucket and spade. 🙂 🙂

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    1. I think we all do, Anabel. The high rises were a result of pure greed. Quarteira is one of those places that never really recovered from them, but it does have a nice promenade. 🙂 🙂

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  2. So thrilled was I at seeing a piece on Quarteira that I forgot to say how good I thought the Post was – and the photos. All lovely.

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  3. I wuz there – in the sixties! We spent a wonderful four days there while travelling in our little Austin van through Portugal. I shall have to dig out my photographs (slides) from that era and maybe scan them in and digitise them (if I remember how). If I remember correctly there was only one hotel there at the time, up a side street, and the restaurant for the hotel was on the seafront. The food was brilliant, sardines a speciality at that time of year, and as for the cakes. I can still taste them. There was a bar in the hotel where I remember I had to drink3 glasses of the local white firewater as neither my husband nor a friend would touch it and it had been given by the owner of the hotel who was in the bar that night. What I do for England!

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    1. Not at all for the better, Gilda. Quite a lot of the Algarve was spoiled in this way when the developers first moved in. These days there are restrictions, but there’s still greed too 😦

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  4. I always love seeing black and white photographs of places as they were in the past. It’s good people have sought to preserve history in this way. I’m sure it was fascinating. I love the vendor in the bunny hat! A green bunny at that! 🙂

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  5. I too love the juxtaposition of old photos and present views. The beach fronts of old are definitely more appealing. Also notice among the fishing boats, some that look like little dhows with their lateen sails. That veggie chap is a hoot. Or should I say a little lamb. I need a hat like that up at the allotment since I never got the balaclava.Happy Sunday, you and Mick.

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    1. I thought just that when I saw his hat, Tish. The very thing 🙂 🙂 I liked that shot of the old boats too. Not easy to get clear shots of them, but you get the picture. Have you made it to the allotment yet today? Seriously soggy but the daffs were nodding quite happily up in Durham.

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    1. I think the signboards are a great addition, Liz. Quarteira itself is a bit of a sorry sight, with all those blocks behind the beach, but it’s a good prom. Nice to see ‘how it was’. 🙂 🙂 Thanks for the link!

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      1. Yes, I’m always standing and staring at those old photos. Although the high blocks are ugly I’ve become fond of the town because of the people and useful shops you can find hidden away in the backstreets.

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  6. I hate all the high-rises on the beachfront. It means those streets and buildings behind don’t get the light or the view. I’d much prefer a place which looks like those ’60s photos. Reminds me very much of where I lived in SA in the 1970s.

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    1. Quarteira is probably the least photogenic place in the Algarve, Jude. It’s all high rise. Some of it in real need of updating, but the promenade is rather nice. There are no fishermen’s cottages to feel sorry for in this neck of the woods. Fuseta is a different story, and they have built right in front of them. Great to see how it was. 🙂 🙂

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  7. I really like it! What a fabulous way of sharing the past and present together. I wish somehow we could keep the better bits of today but return to the simpler life and more interesting buildings of yesterday.

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    1. Hiya darlin! I thought you’d be out and about. I’m keeping half an eye on the Davis Cup twitter feed -Rafa of course -and doing house stuff. Have meant to do this for ages xx

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