We started our first day in the Algarve with breakfast at Noèlia’s restaurant and then walked around the town and bay of Cabanas. From there we drove to Tavira.

Flamingoes in the Ria Formosa


Boats in the harbour of CabanasTavira is a city to the west of Cabanas where Janet and Paul do their regular shopping, at a supermarket called Continente. We did a bit of shopping and then walked around the town for a short while, coming across Padinha Square. In this square was a bust of António Fernando Pires Padinha after whom the square is named. He was a medical doctor having studied in the town of Coimbra, where he was converted from the monarchical ideas of his father to that of Republican. His father had been Mayor of Tavira from 1886 to 1889 while, after the Revolution of 1910, António assumed the Presidency of the Chamber of Tavira. While in this position he modernised Tavira with the introduction of electricity, a new slaughterhouse and cemetery. On October 1, 1982 and by council resolution, the bust with pedestal of Dr. António Padinha was placed in the square with his name.

Antonio Padinha, Premier of Tavira

There was also a statue of a former Bishop of the Algarve, Dom Marcelino António Maria Franco. Born in 1871, following an active and popular life as a Priest in Faro/Tavira he was elected Bishop in 1920 and held the position for 35 years, until his death in 1955. He is buried in the Cathedral of Faro, 25 kms south of Tavira. I was unsuccessful in finding any more information on him.

Dom Marcellino António Maria Franco Bp of the Algarve 1920 – 1955

From there we wandered down some side streets to the tidal River Gilălo, crossed by a Moorish bridge even though it looks Roman. The tide was right out so we were able to see the riverbed which was covered in crabs with their holes.

Historical Moorish bridge with river at very low tide

Night photo of the bridge
Crabs in the sand

On the far side of the river was a large amphitheatre where regular outdoor shows and concerts are held. We were told that after these activities the municipal workers moved in quickly within a matter of hours all was clean and ready for other use. Off to one side was a tree-lined sidewalk which is a popular place for people to relax.

Amphitheatre and park

After a cup of coffee, we returned to the city centre via the bridge and went into the main square where there were some beautiful, historic buildings. There were also a few shops, including an ice-cream shop which we had to visit as they advertised sugar-free ice-cream, a rarity on our trip so far. We really did enjoy those ice-creams.

We made our way back to the car and went home, having had a very interesting day.

This beautiful Bougainvillea, which is at the rear of the block where Janet and Paul live, is one plant and it has multiple colours of flowers.