Our First Stop in Portugal.

Tuesday 20th January 2015

We had decided to make our move to Portugal today. We would love to see more of Seville but at this point in time we both just wanted to relax and the sea and the beaches of the Algarve beckoned. We had a couple of Aires in mind just over the Spanish/Portuguese border which looked easy to reach so we got packed up and were away by about 10:30. Getting out was definitely easier than getting in! John still had to get out and press the button to gain attention and get the gate opened but there was no delay this time.

The route into Portugal once out of the complex road system around Seville was straightforward and the only unknown was what would happen when we crossed over onto the Portugese toll motorway. We needn’t have worried as there was a clear sign directing all ‘foreigners and tourists’ into a side lane where we simply put our credit card into a machine, our registration number was noted and tolls incurred would be charged directly to our card. This was valid for one month and nothing could be simpler. We didn’t think we would be using the motorway much but nevertheless this was an easy solution to something which had concerned us.

Our first destination, the first Aire at Castro Marim was full to bursting with mainly German and French vans, not surprising as it was free to park but you had to pay for water. We turned around and made our way a couple of miles further along the road to our current location at Vila Real de Santo Antonio. This is a large Aire and there was plenty of space when we arrived. All the best front row pitches were taken, not surprisingly, but we managed to find a space on the next row back. This is a barriered Aire where you take a ticket on entry and then pay on exit. It’s only €4.50 a night and there’s electric if you want it for €2.50 for 12 hours.

We got parked, bought our first net of oranges from a van which called by as we were chatting to a fellow Brit parked in front of us and settled down to have lunch. We had driven through rain again and the day remained dull and cool. We didn’t have anything planned for the rest of the day so just had a walk out to get the lie of the land.

Parked up at Vila Real.

Parked up at Vila Real.

The Aire from the quayside.

The Aire from the quayside.

 

 

 

 

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