Another gorgeous day (a perfect 3.0) as we packed up after a short, delightful stay at Quinta de Coalhos. We were in no hurry to leave and spent a little time with our hosts (senhor José and senhora Isabel) getting some advice and direction about where to eat and what to see near our final destination, which is just outside the village of Pederneira, high on a cliff above Nazaré, on o oceano Atlântico.
We had arranged to have lunch at Remédio D’Alma, since our dinner there on Friday night (13 April) was such a delight. This is quite a testimonial, since our original plans called for us to have lunch at A Lúria, where we had such a great meal last year. Lunch did not disappoint – Steve had a absolutely wonderful arroz de pato, while Susan had lombo assado recheado com ameixa. A second memorable meal at Remédio D’Alma, accompanied by a nice 2004 Paço de Aviz (Trincadeira).
We then sped down the A1 (unusual for us, but we had some time constraints) in what turned out to be a fruitless search for the Castro de Vila Nova de São Pedro, the site of a chalcolithic ruin. The area was beautiful (once we got off the A1), but the Castro was not evident, at least to us!
The remainder of the day found us slowly wending our way north and west until we finally arrived at Quinta das Rosas, where we had a light dinner on our balcony overlooking the ocean. Not too hard to take!
We actually visited two beaches, and both before lunch! We are staying just outside Pederneira, which is on a cliff high above Nazaré – a well-known beach town. The beach is stunning there, and we rolled up our trousers and got our feet wet as we strolled up and down (nearly alone) as the surf pounded. We then drove a little south to Salgado, where we repeated our earlier activities (rolled up our trousers, strolled a bit). At Salgado, there were a few fishermen with long poles stuck in the sand which they would occasionally cast into the surf. This beach is basically an extension of the one in Nazaré (several kilometres south), but physically it is different. And, much less visited.
We were also told that the beach at Nazaré had no undertow (therefore quite safe for swimming, etc.), while the one at Salgado is more dangerous in that regard. The surf seemed much the same at both beaches, so this was a surprise. Both were well worth visiting, even if you are not ‘beach bunnies’ (which we are not).
We then returned to Nazaré for lunch at Sete Saias, which had been recommended to us by senhor José at Quinta de Coalhos (our previous stay). It did not disappoint, and we enjoyed caldeirada and arroz de tamboril. Both were delicious. And, we found that the owner of Sete Saias was related (by marriage) to our hostess at Quinta Das Rosas, where we are staying!
We did some other stuff, but time is running out for the author – we’ll finish this later …
Weather-wise, it was another great day (a perfect 3.0) in this part of Portugal.
We leave Quinta das Rosas (a wonderful place – more later) for the Lisboa airport this morning, where we catch a two-stage flight to Toronto. Our second trip to Portugal (our first was last May) has helped us determine that we will return to this ‘gentle country’ (as Anna, our delightful host here, characterized Portugal) soon.