Fabrica, our start point
If there’s one place in the Algarve that always works its magic on me, it’s Cacela Velha. I’ve taken you there before on my walks (remember Mind that hole!?) but today we’re taking the boat ride from Fabrica. In all my Algarve years I’d yet to see the ferry across to the beach operating, but a reference to it in Spanish ‘Conde Nast’ left me determined. Described as ‘one of the best 15 beaches in the world’, I’ll leave you to judge for yourself. How many beaches can there be in such a location?
But I’m getting ahead of myself, as usual. Taking a Cacela Velha turn off from the E125, you will first come to a sign pointing to Fabrica. This will bring you to a tiny harbour with a couple of very laidback bars and a restaurant. Out of season it’s a place for fishermen and locals, but on the last day of my holiday in September it was almost bustling. The tide was out and flipflops or bare feet were the best way to squidge across to the boat.
Leaving the harbour
We scoot out to meet the sea, the boatman deftly following preordained paths through the water. Running aground would be all too easy.
You have two choices for disembarking- the first stop is opposite to Fabrica. The second, further along the sand bar, is opposite Cacela Velha. Let’s get out at the first, then we can have a bit of a beach comb before catching the boat back from the second stop.
Looking back at the shoreline
And just in case you thought I had the beach to myself…
I’m always intrigued by beach ‘art’
Natural and otherwise
Even a little wistful
The lagoon is a great meeting place for birds
There’s the boatman heading back to base
A rod hopefully standing guard
A flag of surrender?
Behind you lie the salt marshes
And sparse, wind blown grasses
Ahead, the open sea
The sky was very hazy and the sea a milky blue as I wandered with my camera. What makes this beach special, though, is the view back across the lagoon to the fortress on the headland. There’s an almost mystical quality, to my mind, in being out there on the lagoon. The tide was low enough to plodge across to the shore, but the sea creeps in stealthily here and you can be caught out.
The fortress across the bay
A handful of people in the water
The fortress reflected in salty puddles
I carry on beach combing as the tide flows gently back. Joyful cries and laughter reach me from the family on the sandbar. The Portuguese families revel in their beautiful surroundings. And I do, too.
Molluscs clinging tightly
Dried out sea thistles
More beach ‘art’
And a delicate shimmer
Can you see the family on the sandbar?
Their boat, bobbing in the bay
I should explain that this beach stretches all the way back to Tavira. You can reach it by catching the ferry from Cabanas, and the beach will be much busier nearer to that resort. A very long beach walk would eventually bring you to this spot. In the winter months that or swimming across would be the only way to get here. Or a boat taxi, of course.
In the opposite direction, the beach rolls all the way to Spain, but first you have to cross over a channel. A boat is a very useful thing to own in this part of the world. Speaking of which, here comes the ferry.
We leave Cacela Velha behind
And head back to Fabrica
The end of our walk? Well, first we might have a snack at one of the beach bars. Then I’m going to show you the view from Cacela Velha over to ‘our’ beach, just to give you a sense of place. It’s only a half hour walk along the road to Cacela Velha or, if the tide’s not too high, you can walk the strip of beach that hugs the cliff. You’d then have to climb the steps to the village.
Sitting at a Fabrica beach bar
And here you have it- the view from the fort!
Across to ‘our’ beach
And there’s even a bench to enjoy the view
Thanks for humoring me with this boat ride and saunter along the sands. My earlier walk gives you a land-based version, if you’re not a lover of boats. In either case, the views won’t disappoint. In the world’s top 15? I think there’d be strong competition. But I enjoyed it very much, and I hope you did too.
Thank you very much for all your support, and lovely comments. I have a fine time walking with you every week. If you’d like to join me, details are on my Jo’s Monday walk page or just a click on the logo above. Next comes the good bit. Put the kettle on and get ready for a good read!
Humble apologies are due! I forgot to include this walk last week, so please rush over there first :
Urban Walk 2- Toronto Cityscape
Totally opposite in every way- beach shots to die for with Anabel!
You can walk, or take the train. Either way, you’re bound to love the views!
A Walk in the Cinque Terre
Amy’s world is beautiful! Have you noticed?
Monday Walk : Architecture Walk, Austin, part 4
I’ve heard so many good things about Berlin. Let’s take a look, shall we?
Day 1- Dublin to Germany
A trip back in time with Drake this week? Any trip with Drake is good!
And now for something completely different. Many thanks, Elena!
Renaissance Fair in Las Vegas
You wouldn’t get this level of activity on a UK beach ever, I don’t think! Lazy, aren’t we, Pauline?
Early Morning Beach Activities
Ruth has a totally fascinating tour for us this week. One not to miss :
Port Arthur Convict Settlement
The highlight of Geoff’s post for me is Wimbledon Park tube station. A blast from my youth!
Capital Ring- Earlsfield to Richmond
Jude always shares beautiful walks but she has really blown me away with this contribution!
A Walk on a Wild Ridge
If you really want to test your fitness levels, this could be the place :
A Tale of Two Peaks- Part 2
Once in a while I find something a bit different. For the foodies among you- say ‘hi’ to Ishita :
Iva’s Yummy Ljubljananjam Food Walk
Talking about unusual, thanks for these ‘wild’ animals in the city, Becky!
Panthers in Pittsburgh
I haven’t had a stroll with my friend Esther for a while. Sing along, won’t you?
Walk- Down the Canyon
The title of this next post could really have described mine, but they couldn’t be more different!
Walking, Sailing, Walking, Wading
And you can always rely on Gilly to find the beauty in life :
A Green Circle Walk
Or maybe a stroll in sunny Munich will suit? Thanks, Rosemay!
Nymphenburg The Summer Palace
Lastly, Denzil does his very best to give us a smile on a grey day :
Grey day in Grez-Doiceau
Lots this week, aren’t there? I do hope you can find the time to visit, and many thanks to all of you for keeping me such good company. I have one more Algarve walk in reserve, but next week I’m going to hurl myself into an English Autumn, before it passes me by. I’d love for you to join me. Have a great week, won’t you?