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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 …

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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 …

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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 …

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o caçador dos chamínés

The Chimney Hunter

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 …

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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 …

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Xávega net.

Fishing from the land. Six o’clock in the morning. We parked at the isolated spot where the team were starting to arrive, in the area of Meia-Praia in Lagos. We crossed the railway line and the dunes, heading resolutely towards the boat – known locally as a ‘calão’ – whose location we could guess, but which we couldn’t see. Once again, we were going to watch people fishing using the ancient ‘xávega’ net, similar to a beach seine. Just an outboard motor and lighter nets gave the process a modern touch. At six thirty and with the first light of …

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Life in the Nest.

Once upon a time, there were two royal children who were brought up by two Bonelli’s eagles. On 15th and 18th March 2013, they slipped out of their two eggs that had been laid, carefully hidden away in a safe nest made of twigs and leaves high up in a pine tree deep in the forest. The queen had sat on the eggs for 42 days until they hatched. Meanwhile, the king of all the birds flew in circles, slowly using the good thermals to work his way upwards with his 175 cm wide wings to lofty heights to get …

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Herdeiros da Revolução

Heirs of the revolution.

Hiking signifies a return to our roots, to our innate speed, and to an original form of life. It will repeatedly remind us that it is only for a short time that we are guests on this planet, which we have subdued. Wouldn’t we do better to see ourselves just as part of the whole: with nature, the forests, the animals, with all our earth’s resources? We also go walking to see with our own eyes how the countryside develops from year to year. When we go walking, our thoughts become sharper. All our senses are awake and feel, see, …

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