Praia da Bordeira

Dusty beach roads  

Dusty beach roads  

We sampled many known surf spots south of Praia dos Aivados. There was Odeceixe, Amoreira, Arrifana and countless others, we found this guide to wild camping around the Algarve useful. The swell was still 2-3ft but the waves at each spot did not measure up to the equivalent conditions at Aviados so, we kept on searching. 

Sunset park up

Sunset park up

Finally we found Praia da Bordeira, a stunning scenic beach formed by a slow meandering river. Camper vans flocked to the cliffs to access the surf and to the beach for winter sun. It's magnificent beachy allure makes it a clear favourite for motor homes and vans.

Cliff top surf check  

Cliff top surf check  

Duncan heading for Bordeira beach

Duncan heading for Bordeira beach

We learnt that it's illegal to wild camp in the Algarve but in low season the dwindling tourists means it's tolerated. There are plenty of other surf wagons here for the winter. Together pursuing waves across the collection of beaches on the south and west coast of Portugal.

Van Spam

Van Spam

Duncan's casual approach. 

Duncan's casual approach. 

The surf flirted between fun and infuriating. Some days the left from behind the cliffs was peeling and playful yet at other times the backwash would bounce you off when you were least expecting it. It seemed better on a smaller swell, although the inside section could be heavy on the larger days.

Cliff side view

Cliff side view

A bigger day

A bigger day

There are no facilities at Bordeira whatsoever, we made frequent trips to the small local hamlet of Carrapateira. Washing your hair in a bucket post surf can only work for so long. After a few days the surf deteriorated, we moved out to seek permanent plumbing. 

Aljezur church

Aljezur church

Portuguese vista

Portuguese vista

The neighbouring town of Aljezur kept us interested for a couple of hours. After stocking up at the Intermarche we walked to the hill top Castelo. This was an important Moorish trading post with a once large river encompassing the town, the name Aljezur means 'islands' in Arabic. Today the river is a stinky stream. 

History cram

History cram

Ancient streets of Aljezur

Ancient streets of Aljezur