Friday, 7 October 2016

Dummy firmly back in mouth

Friday 7th October.

Tonight we are parked up at Terrugem on a large car park with all facilities for Motorhomes and stunning views (38.84549 -7.34883). It's a small town a few miles west of Elvas and was highly recommended, especially for the small cafe opposite which we were told served delicious food and we would be guaranteed a warm welcome by the owner and locals alike. This may well be the case but today it's closed. Anticipating someone else providing our lunch today our food reserves had been allowed to dwindle so we set off into town in search of another eating establishment. The town isn't that large so it didn't take us too long. The first cafe/bar looked promising but when I stole a glance at the other customer's bowl of food it looked suspiciously like tripe. I had a bad experience with tripe in Portugal last year and didn't really fancy spending the next few hours attempting to chew a tasteless offering from a sheep's stomach.
Our second stop looked promising, there was a menu displayed outside - in Portugese, which was a bit of a challenge but in we went anyway, surely there would be something we liked. We entered and sniffed the air, no cooking smells. No customers either. Not a good start but we ordered a drink and I did a bit of sign language indicating we might like to eat something. Out came the menu at which we stared blankly. The proprietor asked if we were English, yes we smiled. He spoke no English. "Parlez vous Francais?" He asked. "Un peu, tres mal" I replied. Then our host had a brainwave, out came the laptop and he started translating the menu (Google is our friend). As he displayed each dish he looked at us for confirmation as to whether that might be what we would like. We shook our heads solemnly at each offering. Then, suddenly, a man emerged from the previously hidden restaurant area, burped, rubbed his stomach and kissed his fingers to the proprietor in the universal gesture of food enjoyed. "We'll have what he had!" we exclaimed in unison. Smiles all round as we were ushered into the restaurant to a prime table where we could watch the Portugese news and the first half of a soap on the telly. Olives, bread, Cod (a la maison) and a jug of wine - delicious.

Last night we stopped at Vila Velha de Rodao, about 75 miles north at another Motorhome stopover
(39.65122 -7.67188). We stopped here last year but it poured with rain for 24 hours and we were unable to search for the Otters, Midwife Toads, Eagles and various other exotic amphibians, mammals and birds which the information boards told us frequented the adjacent Tagus river. This time the weather was glorious so off we set for a riverside walk. We followed a path for a mile or so which ran near the river, dropped down to the river and then petered out! Back to our starting point to walk in the other direction - no path at all. So the wildlife remained undiscovered.

Some of my photos have finally appeared now on the pad so I'll try and include a few on a separate post and we'll see how good the WiFi is here.



  1. Hi there,
    We are selling up and moving to Portugal very shortly. Plans are to shop around in motorhome first before settling. Can I ask what resources you use to find places to stop? I will use the POI database from WC as a starting point. Your blog is really good and I will follow your trip through Portugal now.

  2. Hi Don,
    Apart from the WC POIs we also use the Camperstop book and the Dutch Campercontact app. If you have a look at you will find a massive resource there of locations to stop at Barragems and river beaches. But the best places we have found have been recommended by other WC members. vwallen, johnh
    , pauljenny have all travelled extensively through Portugal and if you look back through the Portugal threads you'll find loads of places they have recommended. pm them and I'm sure they'll give you loads of advice. Happy travels and thanks for looking at the blog.

  3. Pat, scanning the old posts now, lots of info there.