Living in the eastern Algarve
This fascinating town, with its rich mixture of Roman architecture and traditional Portuguese buildings, boasts 20 churches. Examples of Moorish influence are everywhere in Tavira, from its whitewashed buildings and ornate rooftops to its camel bone and wrought iron doors. Although widely thought to be of Roman origin, Tavira’s famous seven-arch bridge over the river Gilão, was actually acquired in the 17th century.
The market hall on the river front, flanked by shops, restaurants and cafes, has been recently renovated and regularly holds shows and special events. The area is a popular shaded place for a game of Dominos or to sit and gaze at the reflections on the water.
Vila Real de Santo António
Located at the mouth of the River Guadiana, the 18th century town centre of this pretty fishing port is the go-to spot to see good examples of the region’s heritage.
Vila Real de Santo António and Tavira are teaming with tempting restaurants serving fresh local fish. Their winding, scenic streets are ideal places for an after-dinner stroll and a scoop or two of ice cream.
Ramblers, cyclists and horse riders alike venture to Ria Formosa Nature Park and the National Forest of Vila Real de Santo António to take in the local fauna and flora. They are also havens for bird watchers on the lookout for Black-winged Stilts, Avocets, Little Terns and Audouin’s Gull.
Just off the tourist radar, the eastern Algarve has managed to retain its authentic regional flavour. And with Seville only a short drive away, it is a convenient spot from which to visit Spain.
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