So, my boyfriend of almost 4 years finished his commercial pilot training and landed a job with EasyJet (cue round of applause!)… And I finished and passed my second year of Uni (hold the applause… it’s really not that impressive). To celebrate, we took a trip to one of the most remote parts of the Portuguese Algarve– Sagres. Having never been to Portugal before, we didn’t know what to expect.
As we both have massive loans to eventually pay off, we booked a budget aparthotel called Don Tenorio in Sagres. As I tell you more about this enchanting place, I must begin with pointing out that this is the PERFECT area to stay in if you have a car, enjoy hiking, nature, beaches, good food, and tranquillity. We rented a car for the week and were able to see some quaint little towns, some amazing beaches and do some hiking as well. We had easy access to both the south and west coast and were able to really feel like part of the community since the area was short of tourists.
Sagres, Portugal, and nearby Cape St. Vincent, mark the southwestern-most point of continental Europe. It is an area rich with history and in ancient times was thought to be the end of the inhabited world. While that little tidbit is exciting enough on its own, apparently in the past travellers also believed the waters beyond Cape St. Vincent to be filled with seething sea serpents. Basically, they were scared of sailing beyond the Cape, lest they be eaten by a sinister, saltwater version of the Ogopogo.
As we got closer to Sagres Point, we noticed a marked change in the landscape; it became sparser and rockier, with sage-coloured greenery clinging desperately to dry, low-growing shrubs. The wind picked up, and the closer we got to the end of the world, the more it seemed as though the ancients may have been on to something: it felt angry and inhospitable.
As we approached the end of the road, the saw-toothed wall of a fort, flanked on both sides by golden cliffs, rose from the horizon: the fort at the end of the world.
To say the fort is wind-swept would be an understatement: the wind defines the visitors’ experience. And while, at first, it seemed as though the fort didn’t have much to offer the visitor, as we wandered around we found ourselves stopping constantly to simply marvel at the natural beauty of the setting.
We spent almost two hours wandering around the fort, before finally tearing ourselves away from the place; it’s a pleasant feeling to go somewhere with no expectations, and come away with the sense you’ve found a gem. That’s how we felt leaving Sagres, which has since become one of our favourite places to stay thus far.
Student Journalist, Creative Writer, Poet, Traveller, Eco Warrior