Praia de Aberta Nova (Melides) to Cape Espichel

*** For just a taster of our photos, you might like our Facebook Page: @RandomMotorhomeTravels ***

The thundering waves didn’t stop thundering all night. At least where we live the tide is constantly on the move, and so you do get a break. Mustn’t complain though – the place was idyllic.

Next stop was for an onboard lunch at the next beach along. In these parts, that is not as simple as just driving up the road, but rather it means meandering inland for several kilometres, then following the main road for a further several kilometres, then another meander to the coast.

The beach is pretty much predictable along this stretch, but very attractive. At this particular beach there was a popular wooden restaurant with veranda. Ordinarily it is paid parking, but out of season there’s no-one to collect the money, and no-one seems to care about the no caravans sign, which we interpret as no motorhomes. The advantages of off-season travel.

The next town, Comporta, has an aire, which has all the basic services, for which we were grateful. Interesting that some motorhomers are happy to sit in their chairs in this muddy, scruffy plot of land when there are so many Park4nights with great views along this coastline. Maybe someone should let them know.

After Comporta comes the great spit that leads to the surreal Troia, with its high-rise appartments and hotels, which despite being eerily “perfect” and pristine, desecrate this great natural feature, in my view anyway.

By coincidence, a review of a potential overnighting spot along the spit, alerted me to the fact that there was a regular car ferry that would take us across the narrow waterway to Setubal. This would save a journey of at least 90 minutes, at a rough estimate, much of which appeared to be more functional than enjoyable. So for a total of €27 we had a great half-hour trip on the bright green ferry, which runs every hour – it couldn’t be easier.

On disembarking, Sophie soon realised that the bustling Setubal would likely have some hidden gems to photograph, but not being properly prepared this would be tricky. I thought I’d got away with it, but she saw a parking opportunity and made me pull over. so that she could do a Google job on it. Very fortunately for me, when she showed me an image of their colourful fishing harbour, which she just had to see, and after consulting with, I realised that this was just on the other side of this rough looking motorhome parking spot.

En route to the boats, Sophie was delighted to see a Farturas stand, its name amusing her for some reason. For purely a photo opportunity, so she said, she even insisted on me buying a couple of these delicious and wicked, extruded doughnut-like creations, which are essentially churros on steroids, rolled in sugar with the perfect subtle hint of cinnamon. Not satisfied with that, she sent me back a second time for two more – I can only think the original photos hadn’t come out as she expected. My pigeon Portuguese wasn’t working this time, so we resorted to sign language, but even then my two fingers presented the polite way were interpreted as three, so I had no choice but to use the less polite version, which fortunately did the trick, and apparently didn’t cause offence.

Sophie also got to see the fishing harbour, and we were treated to seeing two enormous ships passing by.

Completely stuffed with an excess of farturas we then continued in pursuit of our spot for the night. The coast road West of Setubal was very good, ultimately turning inland, as the coast rose sharply. This route ultimately took us back to the coast to the lighthouse at the very western point, Cape Espichel. Park4night showed a carpark here, which was popular with tourists, as the cliffs are spectacular and there’s an old derelict monastery to wander around. We were initially on our own, but a French neighbour joined us in the carpark later on.

*** Just to mention that our blogs tend to be a couple of weeks behind reality, as we’re always in catch-up mode ***

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