If you’re looking for the perfect place to have an aperitif on a romantic date, we suggest you try Noah Surf House in the Santa Cruz beach, 40 miles north of Lisbon.
The building is minimalistic, designed to frame the gorgeous ocean views. The space is furnished with colorful tables and benches made from reclaimed wood, as if to stress that everything on the beach is a gift from the sea.
During Fall or Winter you might have this magical place all for yourself. During Spring or Summer, you’re likely to find it full of beautiful people who gather here to enjoy the setting of the sun.
It is impossible not to fall in love with Noah. And it is easy to fall in love with the person who brought you there.
Noah Surf House is on Avenida do Atlantico, A dos Cunhados, tel 261 932 355. Click here for their web site.
Life is like a train trip. We eagerly anticipate getting to the next station but, once we’re there, we can’t wait to move on.
Much of life is a blur, like the views from a moving train. We remember the arrivals and departures of those we love. And we remember some of the train stops, when the pace of life slows down.
For us, many of these leisure moments are spent on a Portuguese beach. We recall the beauty of the seaside, the wonderful weather, the delicious food and, most of all, those who shared these happy moments with us.
One of the most captivating beaches in Portugal is the Pessegueiro (peach tree) beach near Porto Covo in Alentejo. It is wonderful to seat on the sand feeling the sea breeze and enjoying the view of the Pessegueiro island. The island looks so mysterious that it is impossible to resist the temptation to plunge in the emerald waters and swim a shore. It is great fun to explore the 15th century fort and the ruins that date from Roman times.
In the afternoon, it is fantastic to go horseback ridding along the coast. Claudia Castanheira and Paulo Rosa of Herdade do Pessegueiro provide all you need: well-trained, intelligent horses, horse-riding instruction, and a picnic. Riding a horse through trails and sand dunes, feeling one with nature is an unforgettable adventure.
Click here for the Herdade do Pessegueiro web site.
In 1786 a Spanish galleon, San Pedro de Alcantara, departed from Peru loaded with a fortune in silver and gold and a precious botanical collection of tropical specimens. The galleon also carried a famous passenger: Fernando Tupac Amaru, an inca whose father had started the most successful uprising against Spanish rule in Peru.
The ship’s captain used a French map that omitted the position of the Berlenga islands. This error had tragic consequences: on the night of February 2, 1786 San Pedro de Alcantara shipwrecked near Papoa, a small peninsula on the coast of Peniche. Almost everybody died but Tupac Amaru managed to swim ashore.
The Spaniards hired divers from all over Europe to come to Peniche help salvage the galleon’s treasures. They also succeeded in recapturing Tupac Amaru.
Today, Peniche’s perfect tubular waves attracts surfers from all over the world. How many of them know that beneath those waves once lied a fortune in silver and gold?
One of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal is Miramar, near Oporto. It has a long stretch of sand bathed by green and blue water. But what makes this beach so special, is an old church built on rocks by the sea on the same place where there was once a pagan temple.
As we entered the church courtyard, we felt surrounded by the sea; dazzled by its sight, soothed by its sound, intoxicated by its scent.
It is easy to understand why this location has been a place of worship for centuries. Faced with such immense beauty, how can we not give thanks to its creator?
One of the joys of living on the coast of Portugal is to wake up and go for a walk on the pristine beach sand, letting the waves bathe our feet. We always thought of these moments as pure indulgence until we read Pablo Casal’s memoir “Joys and Sorrows.”
The great cellist continued to play in his 90s, maintaining a youthful spirit and an amazing creative energy. As we searched his memoir for clues to the source of his longevity, here’s what we found:
“I have always especially loved the sea. Whenever possible, I have lived by the sea… It has long been a custom of mine to walk along the beach each morning before I start to work. True, my walks are shorter than they used to be, but that does not lessen the wonder of the sea. How mysterious and beautiful is the sea! How infinitely variable! It is never the same, never, not from one moment to the next, always in the process of change, always becoming something different and new.”