Early October, I met two Irish Beauties, Cathy and Laura, in Barcelona. We met via an all female Facebook travel group ‘Girl Crew’ suggested by my cousin Jenni. We enjoyed a fun couple of days eating tapas and watching the Irish Rugby Semi-finals. Cathy and I shared the same birthday – The big 4-0 – just one day apart. Thus, I was invited to join them and another Irish lass in southern Portugal for a long (Thanksgiving) weekend on the beach.

Having spent a few days in Lisbon, I hopped on a train, heading down to the lovely Algarve Coastline. We stayed in a flat, very close to the beach and old town (Barrio Alto). Surprisingly, Albufeira was up and running, with many stores and restaurants open, even though they suffered a terrible flood just three weeks prior. Evidence of clean ups, construction and repairs we all around us, but in the low season, many locations are closed for the season anyway.

We enjoyed the grand portions of lunch and dinner, dancing with locals and celebrating our birthday virtually each evening.

On Sunday, we got a chance to hop on a boat to explore the beautiful Algarve coast, scattered with caves, hidden beaches and a stunning hill-top lighthouse.

At sea, our skippers quickly found a huge pod of over 50 Bottlenose dolphins, rather unusual for this time of year. You’ll see an accidental selfie, thinking the camera was reversed. It was a wow moment for sure!

The next morning I headed back to Barcelona with a tan, new friends and lovely memories of Portugal.

Albufeira Portugal Vista