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19 June 2015

snapshots | tavira, portugal

and on our last full day in paradise, we packed in the laying by a pool routine for breakfast and a bit of a wander around the city of tavira. we hopped on the local bus, and in about 15 mins we'd made it to our destination - not bad going, really, and only a couple of euros to get there. was nice to see a bit of the landscape outside of cabanas from the bus windows too - on our first trip from the airport, it was the dead of night and we'd totally missed all the colour and flair of the surrounding towns.

we started with an exceptionally long breakfast at a cafe that boasted to have the best ice cream in all of tavira (it does, as we would find out later in the day), before taking a leisurely stroll about the noisy city. we headed up the cobbled streets past the igreja da misericórdia - a 16th century church with a pretty exceptional facade, and into the castelo gardens.

if i'd thought i'd already seen all the colours portugal had to offer, i was incredibly mistaken. there were even more varieties of flowers and plants and trees in the gardens of the castle, and we spent a good many minutes investigating them thoroughly before heading to the top of the ruin's stony staircase to check out the spectacular view from the top.

from there, we wandered back down the winding alleys, and headed to the centre of the city to check out the bandstand's unusual terrapin enclosure. i'm told it started out as two refugee terrapins many, many moons ago and has since exploded to a reptilian colony of close to 30. having never really seen a terrapin myself, i recall saying "they just look like turtles" to a bunch of strangers, who stared back as if to say "and what..?" the people love a turtle.

the sun was trying desperately to break through the grey clouds, but as it was still warmish despite the lack of sun, we did manage to pick up ourselves some of the greatest ice cream tavira had to offer. mine was a special caramel number that also had secret nuts in it...despite no mention of nuts being in it... safety dance! we wandered along the river and settled in to the empty amphitheatre until the time came to jump on the bus for the return journey home.

it was a well spent few hours discovering the city, and a nice break from the lounging poolside. no matter, we were back in our loungers soon enough...it was our last night in the "sunshine" - it was only right we spent whatever time we had left there poolside... right? our time in paradise was drawing to an end, so we enjoyed the few hours of sun we had left. we spent the last few pennies in our holiday kitty on cheap white wine, grabbed an early table at the local pub for a delicious last supper, and spent the rest of the night playing "heads up" until far too late considering we had taxis booked for just after 7am.

it was the perfect way to spend the last night of our perfect weekend; tired but happy.

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