5 Must Haves For A Beach Picnic

5 Must Haves For A Beach Picnic

5 Must Haves For A Beach Picnic

“Life is better at the beach”

Whether you celebrating the beginning of SPRING or AUTUMN, a picnic at the beach is a great place to chill and relax. The BEACH is definitely my happy place.

TABLECLOTHS SET THE SCENE 

Cotton Murah’s are fabulous and can be bought at markets or here in the Algarve on the beach by the local vendors.  Alternatively, use cotton beach towels that can be bought at most home stores to use as tablecloths on the sand. Both these dry quickly and are easy to wash.

…WHAT WOULD A PICNIC BE WITHOUT A BOTTLE OF BUBBLY.

For a special touch:  Add a few hand woven placemats to your picnic basket and some cushions for comfort whilst sipping your bubby and watching the sun go down to create simple yet stylish picnic look and feel.

QUALITY RE-CYCLED GLASSWARE

Good quality re-cycled non-breakable glasses add a little sparkle to your picnic setting. I these found at El Corte Ingles in Lisbon.

WATER A MUST HAVE ON THE BEACH but ADD FLAVOUR

TIP: 1 litre bottled water

Cut some lemon wedges, cucumber slices and sprigs of rosemary into a container and when setting up your picnic add the mix to your water for flavour.

FINGER FOODS are simple to prepare

A selection of cheeses like French brie or Camembert served with small French Loaves is my favourite

TIP: these cheeses ooze deliciously in the sun, hard cheeses tend to go oily in the sun

Salads in jam jars are easy to eat from and keep fresh

TIP: Save salt, pepper and sauce sachets wherever possible so you don’t have to pack extra into your basket

Baby carrots and veggies can be served with an assortment of dips

Loads of fresh fruit like grapes, berries and sliced watermelon

Dessert: Chocolate Brownies are a great choice

With the above tips, your cooler and picnic basket, you are ready to go. Have fun and enjoy a relaxed day out surrounded by the simple beauty of nature.

All you have to do is choose where to have your portable feast and who to share it with!

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Never Stop Exploring – Part 1

Never Stop Exploring – Part 1

Never Stop Exploring – Road tripping to the Silver Coast, Portugal

“life is a journey and we must live it”

The feeling of getting in a car and road tripping always makes us so excited.

Our life has changed completely in the past year. We recently moved from South Africa to The Algarve, Portugal where we are learning to embrace the Portugal way of life and live to its beat. For us life is all about experiencing new places, different foods and cultures. We love exploring this country called Portugal, with its small villages and winding roads that so often give you a sensation of time standing still. Whether you want a big city or quaint village feel, Portugal offers the complete package.

We usually get up pretty early when we travel so that we can embrace the freshness of the morning. A road trip is not a road trip if there is no picnic basket filled with great treats. Our basket was filled with   cured meats, fresh Portuguese Rolls, local cheeses and loads of bottled water.

“There are a lot of instances where words cannot be translated and “in Portuguese there is the galão. This blissful beverage that elicits instant effervescent happiness is simple enough in its composition but incredibly difficult to describe exactly how delicious and uniquely flavored it truly is. It’s the kind of drink that takes you aback and makes you want to say “you had me at first sip” as it’s the perfect balance of ¾ hot foamed milk and ¼ espresso that somehow just tastes completely different in Portugal than in it does when recreated anywhere else in the world.” Great article on the “GALAO”  http://www.themortonreport.com/home-away/travel/the-art-of-the-galao/

A must, after our light snack, is a Portuguese Galao with a treat of a traditional Pastel da Nata as dessert.

Heading towards the Silver Coast, north of Lisbon you drive over the breathtaking VASCO DA GAMA BRIDGE that spans the Tagus River.  For those that like a little detail: the bridge is 17km long and it was opened in 1998. It is currently the longest bridge in Europe and 9th in the world.

Adding to our great adventure was the two night stay at the Obidos Lagoon Wellness Retreat that is located in “old Quinta de Obidos forest Estate wedged between the Silver Coast beaches and the South Shore of the ancient Obidos Lagoon” For more information on this simple, yet elegantly designed Retreat:  http://www.obidos-wellness.com

An hour north of Lisbon is the spectacular Silver Coast with its quaint seaside villages and towns. We spent some time in the small seaside village of Sao Martinho do Porto, with its calm bay and shell shaped lagoon. Whilst holidaying in this area take the time to visit the other villages that encompass the Silver Coast, each with their own character and charm.

Our wedding anniversary spoil:  A massage, this beautifully decorated bedroom filled with rose petals plus a chilled bottle of bubblyJ  What more could a Girl ask for? My husband J

Thank you to the staff and owner of this perfectly located retreat.

The Obidos Lagoon Wellness Retreat offers various Spa treatments as well as a Hot Outdoor Sauna, Jacuzzi and a large Salt Water Pool.  We loved the Himalayan salt cave “where the air is naturally saturated with negative ions and essential invigorating minerals”.

Falling in love with the great hospitality, sumptuous food, glorious beaches, wonderful green belts and intriguing towns within the Silver Coast, was not very difficult to do.

 

TRAVEL is the only thing that you buy that makes you richer

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Never Stop Exploring – Part 2

Never Stop Exploring – Part 2

Never stop exploring… Live is a journey so live it (Part 2)

THE MEDIEVAL TOWN OF OBIDOS, what a find!!

Our next stop was the beautiful village of Obidos, built within the most spectacular castle walls with an amazing history that would take up most of my blog if I was to give you loads of detail. This beautiful quaint village if filled with winding cobbled roads and small shores offering a huge selection of traditional Portuguese products.

AND now for the best part…could you resist

As we walked into the Castle we came across “the blue lady” setting herself up to perform in an amazing alcove rich with Portuguese tradition.  Sadly we did not have enough time to listen to her but we will return to spend an evening in this beautiful village.

INSIDE THE WALLS….bursts of beautiful colour were darted all over this medieval village, from the beautiful potted plants to the colours of the houses.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A must to taste is the famous Ginja D’Obidos (Sour Cherry Liqueur) that can either be drunk in a small tumbler or in a chocolate mold filled with the liqueur. You can guess which one we went for ….Chocolate and Ginja is the perfect combination.

Obidos is definitely one of those villages that deserves a second visit and night’s stay. Time to head back home…my FAVOURITE thing is to go where I have never been!!

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