The first time I went to Portugal was at the end of November of 2021 when I visited the southern city of Faro. Despite being the capital city of the Algarve and the gateway to the country’s southern coast, Faro has an estimated population of fewer than 70,000. Its twisted alleys and ancient archways add to the charm of this beautiful, very old port city.
Not far is the Ria Formosa National Park, where hundreds of birds, including flamingos, stop during their migrations in spring and autumn. Two friends and I rode bicycles from the city centre and through the mossy, swampy landscapes of Ria Formosa all the way to the Atlantic Ocean, arriving at the beach just in time for sunset.