Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Home | Portugal | Report | Photoreport


My Way
Rota Vicentina: 14 + one day)

rota vicentina

Via Algarviana – Rota Vicentina – Rota do Pescador   Day 1 – Aljezur – Odeceixe (18 km) On this first day of April, the sky is as I know it in April: unsettled. For the last two weeks, I’ve been walking the 250 kilometres along the Via Algarviana, with little more than a sense of the Atlantic in the near distance. Now I can raise my nose into the wind, smelling salt and all sorts of colourful things by the wayside. The lines on the paper of my map indicate a further 350 kilometres, which I welcome with a …

Read More »


The scene with long queues and lots of elderly people in the post office is repeated every month. More than a dozen people stand there in a queue and wait for their pensions. Most of them receive a sum that is way below €400. The money is paid to them in cash, and counted out in public before being handed over. The post office clerk counts the money out to the pensioner: ten, 20, 30 euros, one hundred, two hundred, three hundred euros, and then the money is stuck in the envelope which had previously contained the payment slip from …

Read More »

Ruins – a realisable utopia

Does Monchique really need a cable car? When organising a town or a city, the most fundamental requirement is, first of all, to define a strategic concept, however utopian this may be, that will enable everyone to understand what sort of human activity is essential there. The house is the first cosmic concept of organised and potentially positive space in the town’s dynamic construction, with all of its dreams and aspirations. Utopia is a necessary part of any visionary reform that can appeal to the town’s social imagination. The town mirrors the way in which social and personal relationships are …

Read More »

ANCCRAL | Portugal’s third revolution

EN In the dairy of the multi-purpose centre in the parish of Azinhal in the municipality of Castro Marim in the Algarve, where time stands still from time to time, there has been – almost without anyone noticing it – a genuine revolution. For five days a week, the goat rearers association ANCCRAL (Associação Nacional de Criadores de Caprinos da Raça Algarvia) produces fresh goat’s cheese there, and an incredibly good natural yoghurt, unprecedented in the region. As part of his secondary activity, as the finance department would call it, (atividade secundária), Pedro Constância (see photo) collects the milk from …

Read More »

Zero emissions

Electric vehicles offer a superior driving experience. With fast, smooth acceleration, an ultra-quiet environment and lower emissions of polluting gases, their use is becoming inevitable. The programme Mobi.E, started in 2010, promoted the use of electric cars, and, according to ACAP at the start of 2016, an increase of 2,149 vehicles was seen, and the trend is upwards. The MOBI.E network has 1,300 normal charging points and 50 rapid charging points in locations with public access in mainland Portugal.     I drive… a VEECO RT João Oliveira, aged 63, works in IT and on the building of electric vehicles in …

Read More »

Portugal is growing in the bicycle production market

There are moments that remain engraved for ever in our memories, and one such moment is without doubt getting your first bicycle. It was bluish in colour, decorated with the football stickers of the time; it was second-hand, and bore the signs of accidents from my cousins’ adventures. How could you forget your first bicycle, that high-speed companion on daring adventures? The bicycle is nowadays the most commonly used means of transport in the world. Portugal is the third biggest producer of bicycles in Europe. This means of transport emits no polluting or greenhouse gases, the bicycle is a vehicle …

Read More »

Salt, a treasure rediscovered

Since ancient times, salt has played a key role in the lives of human beings. Used primarily as a means of preserving foodstuffs, it acquired vital importance during the Roman Empire, and is the derivation of the word “salary”. This was because it was common practice in Rome for employees of the Empire, such as legionaries, to receive their wages (or salaries) in salt, as payment for their services. The areas where salt was extracted became so important strategically that some of them were walled and settlements were created to defend this asset. The oldest known record of Portuguese salt …

Read More »

The small successes are what matters

What is presumed to have been the last Portuguese lynx was seen at the beginning of the 1990s in the Monchique uplands. It was probably shot by hunters. But the species had already been driven to the verge of extinction. The population of wild rabbits, on which the lynx fed almost exclusively, shrank owing to a viral epidemic and to hunting. The lynx gradually starved. The greatest enemy of the Iberian lynx, however, continues to be human beings and their favourite toy, the car. Against this backdrop, we have become more modest and celebrate the anniversary with humility. Exactly ten …

Read More »

The Chimney Hunter

o caçador dos chamínés

A nicely decorated chimney has become a kind of Algarve trademark. It is a form of expression through which the people of the Algarve capture the working techniques of our forebears. The different appearances given to the chimneys, the different shapes, colours and styles, ensure that Algarve people are seen to be both tasteful and refined. The more distinctive and ostentatious the chimneys, the better. Chimneys in the shape of balloons and cones, with a grille or decorated with a series of tiles, and in a wide range of colours, attract the attention of onlookers. This sight on the rooftops …

Read More »

For sale

Loulé. There are six of us inflicting this on ourselves and squeezing into the lift cage. A bell rings and slowly, at one metre per second, we float down into the depths of the earth. We’re all wearing blue plastic helmets. They’re equipped with torches that are fastened to a cable with the belt around your waist. During the journey underground, I think about what could have motivated people more than 50 years ago, to drill a 260-metre-deep hole in the earth? Because what we are doing is nothing other than following a widened, enlarged borehole into the deep. There’s …

Read More »