Charting a couple's move from London to Portugal, tales, adventures and moving advice


April – Ten Fabulous Things 1

Posted on April 26, 2010 by Ben Algarve

Monday mornings are a lot easier to deal with when the sun floods through the curtains as soon as we pull up the shutters. I am very thankful that I really can’t find a lot to complain

Montegordo - just before sunset

Montegordo - just before sunset

about right now, and yesterday as I sat on the beach, I started thinking about all the great times we have had this month. It’s time for a list! Here are ten fabulous things that we enjoyed in April:

1. Spending three hours (yesterday) bobbing around in an over-sized rubber ring in a calm and surprisingly warm Atlantic Ocean.

2. Learning how to prepare and cook fresh squid.

3. Watching fish swimming in the top of the waves at Barrill beach on the Isla De Tavira.

4. Sharing our new home with several of our nearest and dearest.

5. Going to the beach with our friend’s eight month old baby and introducing him to sand.

6. Mastering the use of our new barbeque, with the exception of learning how to stop having to clean it being a HUGE chore.

7. Playing boule on the beach. (Hmm, a bit of a beach theme emerging here…)

8. Driving around somewhere that now truly feels like home with loud, sunny music playing.

9. Sitting outside drinking cheap wine on the first of the really barmy, warm evenings.

10. Exploring some more of Portugal (some the Alentejo and the area around Coimbra – more to follow on the blog at some point!)

It is interesting, when I read back over the list, that none of these things really cost money. Luther Vandross and Janet Jackson were spot on: the best things in life ARE free!

In the interests of balance, as always, here are a few less fabulous things from this month!

1. Discovering that Spain, as well as the UK, must have its share of noisy chavs, demonstrated by the group of children throwing wood at each other on Montegordo beach while their tattooed parents shouted at them. Thankfully this was an isolated example!

2. Coming to the realisation that having to go back to the UK every few months to work is never going to stop being rather depressing.

3. Trying to sleep when mosquitoes are determined to make noisy dives at your ears.

4. Finding out that even though Portugal is a far more friendly country than the UK, there are still a few people in customer facing jobs who need to learn to smile. Chinese restaurant on Montegordo seafront, I am thinking of you 🙂

That’s it for today. Have a look at my other blog, for five fabulous foods from this month!

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Tavira….excited! 0

Posted on May 20, 2009 by movingtoportugal


The source of much excitement


After much exploration, we have decided on Tavira to start with. We also intend to try the silver coast, renting in both areas to check all goes to plan and see which we prefer.  We have the deposit paid on a lovely town house and when not stressing about finalising things here in the UK we are getting extremely excited, mostly about the following things:

1. Shopping at the mercado for fish.

2. Learning to properly cook said fish – if there are 365 ways to cook Bacalhau I want to learn them!

3. Experimenting with sub-2 euro wine – see the food and drink forum at !

4. Roof terrace. BBQ. Roof terrace. BBQ.

5. Having friends to stay and impressing them with my top class sardine filleting skills (yet to be fully developed.)

I must confess to having slightly shocked myself that they are all largely food based things. I guess that solves the mystery of the expanding waist-line!

I know all of the wonderful bits will be mixed with a few unpleasent surprises and tangles with beaurocracy but I’m a glass-half-full kind of person and in truth I’m kind of looking forward to them too. At least they will hopefully provide some amusing content for this blog…

A couple of photos:

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