Portugal Day 4: 27/03/2016

We woke at 6.30am (7.30 new time as the clocks had changed overnight) and had a bop in our bed. Once we heard others stirring we joined them in the living room for a cuppa. BattleKid watched an episode of Curious George, tucked up with Nico who had slept on the sofa bed due to his sunburn. We got some breakfast into us and then wandered into Tavira town to check out buses to other destinations.

Tavira is a quaint little town situated 17 miles east of Faro on the edge of the Algarve. It is not a very touristy place like I’d image the rest of the Algarve is, but still seems to be popular with, let’s say, older tourists. It still comes across as a traditional Portuguese town and definitely isn’t somewhere to go if you are looking for typical tourist holiday things. I’d imagine it probably does get busy in the summer but with a mixture of European tourists if Easter weekend is anything to go by. It comes across as a place where older Europeans retire to, which explains why my parents like it so much. There aren’t many tourist bars, there isn’t a water park and no big holiday hotel resorts that I could see. Tavira Gardens where we were staying seemed to be a mixture of holiday apartments and retirement homes.

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That said Tavira has charm. It has lots of narrow, cobbled streets in the centre of town and near the boats/harbour areas of town the streets are lined with shops of all manner selling things like cork bags to traditional tablecloths to gifts and clothes. It is a proper mish-mash of shops.

The plaza beside the Roman Bridge is a nice area with a big open area, cafes on the edges and a nice garden off it leading to an old market building. At the end of the garden there is a market once a week selling things likes smoked meat to handmade wicker baskets to honey. There are lots of old buildings around Tavira with colourful doors and a definite feel of old Mediterranean about it.

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Cobbled streets of Tavira

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portugal day4

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Roman Bridge of Tavira

After a wander to the bus station to check out bus times to Olhao and Ville Real, we headed back to the plaza and stopped for a drink and some cake in a café, not one of the tourist-type ones. The waitress who served us on Day 2 served us again and she was lovely, particularly with BattleKid as, she had explained before, she has a little girl of 2 and a half herself. Afterwards we had a another quick wander around the garden, spotting fish and terrapins in the fountain which had BattleKid in amazement. We hopped into a taxi back to our apartment and gave BattleKid a light lunch before I put him down for a nap. The fresh air and running around had him pooped.

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Fish and terrapin spotting with Lolo

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portugal day4

Myself and my mum caught a bit of sun while we could on the terrace while Lolo did some prep for dinner (he just can’t tear himself away from the kitchen) and Nico soaked in the bath. We had checked out bus times for the next day (Bank Holiday Monday) but they looked few and far between due to the day that was in it, so we planned to visit the Tavira Gran Plaza shopping centre on the Monday morning and Nana, Lolo and Nico would head off on a bus on the Tuesday, when I was gone to the airport, to visit other areas of the Algarve.

I think they were worried I’d want to see more but I didn’t mind not going anywhere else, especially if it meant a very long day for BattleKid the day before we were due to travel home. I joked that we would see more of the Algarve the next time we went on holiday with them! To be honest I was enjoying just relaxing with them and spending some quality time with them, Nico and BattleKid.

As BattleKid napped I got about 15-20 minutes in the sun before opening his door to try to get him to stir. He slept for two and a half hours in total! After a bit of a play on the terrace we went inside to get ready for dinner and a toddler tantrum started. I left him crying in the hall while I started my dinner as he wouldn’t apologise or stop whingeing. He then refused dinner once he’d calmed down, so after us adults finished we moved outside to the terrace and I made him toast and fruit to see if I could get something into him. He ate the strawberries, one bite of toast and banana, and that was it. So I left him, I didn’t want to force him to eat if he didn’t want to. I’d just give him extra milk before bed. I decided to bath him and he was in relatively good form afterwards, playing hide-and-seek with Nico and with the balloon he’d gotten on Friday. I had to keep him up a bit later to account for the change in the hour and his long nap and near 8pm I gave him his bop and stories.

He didn’t settle right away but was quiet so I had a cuppa with Nico and my mum before turning in myself. I’d been to bed earlier this weekend than I had in a long time but it was much-needed to catch up on the boy. The next day was to be a packing and shopping day. However noisy neighbours came in at 10pm and someone in high heels spent an hour walking back and forth. They did our heads in which meant my early night wasn’t so early after all.

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