Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Chronicles from Alentejo | Vila Nova de Milfontes

Vila Nova de Milfontes is a lovely small town on the Southwestern coast of Portugal and scenery for some of my childhood vacations. On those distant days wasn't much more than a small village with an old fortress overlooking river Mira, but for me, a dreamy little girl had all the ingredients needed for my adventures: imaginary pirates, secret paths leading to the ocean, tidal pools on the rocks...

Have returned there this Summer. The town grew, gained hotels and restaurants, houses and parking lots, hundreds of visitors, but because I still look at it with my 8 years old girl's eyes, still keeps much of its charm.

Is not hard to get there from Lisbon, and it took us less than two hours to arrive and park the car in one of the large free parking lots at walking distance to the beach. If you plan to stay, better book in advance from the several small hotels, Airbnb,  rural tourism and camping available in the region. There are numerous restaurants and cafés where you can have a proper meal or something lighter. But, please, don't leave Milfontes without having an ice-cream at Mabi. You maybe have to face a que but the effort is worthwhile.

If you're in the mood for a day at the beach you can choose between the calm river waters on the bay or the sea waves of Praia do Farol (Lighthouse Beach). I would suggest to stay on the bay on the high tide and go closer to the sea on the low tide. Then you can find pools (some large enough for a grown up person) where the water can be a little bit warmer. If you cross the river on the nearby bridge you can go to Praia das Furnas, a beach on the opposite side of the river Mira, known for its caves. Not far is Praia do Malhão, a more secluded (and less crowded) beach that you will love. At Praia do Farol you can also enjoy the spectacular view of hundreds of piled stones that visitors built on the sand. Don't forget to built one yourself!

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