Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Ride Tales, Trip Reports and Stories > Ride Tales
Ride Tales Post your ride reports for a weekend ride or around the world. Please make the first words of the title WHERE the ride is. Please do NOT just post a link to your site. For a link, see Get a Link.
Photo by Igor Djokovic, camping above San Juan river, Arizona USA

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Igor Djokovic,
camping above San Juan river,
Arizona USA



Like Tree446Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #451  
Old 21 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

So it did rain.... we are definitely cursed.

We watched the rain fall on our bikes from our AirBnB apartment. Neda's cold has migrated down to her chest and she's developed a really bad cough, one that keeps her up at night so she's not getting much sleep. She's feeling a bit low because she's been having a lot of health issues lately, with her stomach before and now with this cold. And she's also sensitive to the weather and the rains have also added to those feelings.

Neda is basically bedridden, as any attempt to leave the apartment seems to exacerbate the cold and her fever returns as well. We had originally planned to spend some time riding around the southern coast of Portugal, but now we've had to delay that and extend our stay in Albufeira to help poor Neda recuperate. I feel so bad for her!


Riding into Albufeira to do some exploring

After four days of intensive rest and relaxation, Neda shows signs of improvement. We can see the touristy town of Albufeira from our apartment window and it's been beckoning to us all this time, so on one sunny day we decide to ride into town to do a bit of sightseeing.


As always, we gravitate to the historic old town


We met the mayor. This little guy was walking around like he owned the place.


Checking out the pedestrian traffic below
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #452  
Old 21 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Peruvian pan flutes in Portugal? We had a flashback to the last place we were in South America!


Old town in Albufeira

Albufeira used to be a fishing village until the '60s when the tourism industry turned it into a beach-side resort town for European vacationers. The remnants of the original village can still be seen amongst all the souvenir shops and swanky restaurants.


One of the shops had this nice painted tile of what the Algarve is famous for

They call Albufeira the Gateway to the Algarve. It's one of the eastern-most points of entry into the region that's known for beach-side tourism.


The shoreline is rife with all sorts of hotels and vacation rentals


Every year, Albufeira hosts a sand-sculpture competition. This was off-season, but there were still a couple of artists honing their craft


"Come on, you haven't eaten all day. Just one bite..."
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #453  
Old 21 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Further proof that we are here in the off-season - empty beaches


So those leaves that Neda was collecting in her tankbag? Disintegrated. She's going back to seashells...


Playing tag with the waves


"The um... wind... knocked it over..."

Seriously though, what is up with the wind in Southern Spain/Portugal?

We've run out of time in Agarve and have to leave the region because we have an appointment to keep! We'll just have to come back later to explore more of the area.
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #454  
Old 25 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/203.html



A couple of our friends in Toronto PMed us to tell us that they were going to spend a week in Portugal for a last-minute vacation. Since we were in the area, we're hopping on our bikes and heading to Lisbon to meet up with them!

It's mainly a boring, straight road ride from the Algarve region north. Checking the forecast, it's going to be a wet ride. What else is new? Couple the cold rain with continuing high winds and it made for a very miserable ride. Since we had left later in the day, we rode through stretches of rural southern Portugal in complete darkness with no streetlights for miles. The raindrops collecting on our visors refracted the headlights of oncoming traffic into a starry mess of road blindness and I had to focus on the red taillights of the car in front of me to help us stay between the ditch and cars and trucks hurtling towards us.

We miss the Pula Girls! Come back and travel with us full-time!!!


Arriving at our hotel in downtown Lisbon in the pouring rain. The only plus: Free Moto Parking!


Wet, cold and miserable. The RideDOT.com curse continues.

Neda is still suffering from the ravages of her chest cold. It's pretty serious and we are thinking it might be bronchitis. Her hacking at night is getting worse and she finds it painful to breathe. Plus she is horking up this thick green phlegm on a regular basis. I know this because she took a picture of it and showed it to me. That's gross, Neda! She said she took a picture because she was concerned and wanted to show a doctor. Most guys would have taken a picture just so they could show their friends...

The cold and wet ride to Lisbon did not help her get well, so I put her back on bedrest. We've been in Portugal for over a week now and haven't really seen much, but Neda's health is a priority at this point and touring and sightseeing in cold weather is the last thing she needs.


We decide to splurge and treat ourselves to a nice dinner for a change

I figured maybe a hot meal would do us some good, so we tried some of the bacalhau, the salted cod that Portugal is so famous for. Delicious! Our appetizers in the picture above are cod fritters (pastéis de bacalhau) and chorizos set on fire! So yummy!!!
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #455  
Old 25 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
We did go into town for a grocery run:


We visited the Expo '98 site. Every World Fair has to have a flying saucer shaped building. It's in the rulebook.


This is not an Expo building, it's a shopping mall. We went grocery shopping here.


Friends! Marco and Lori arrived the next day!

Marco was born in Portugal and lived in Lisbon for the first part of his life. It was great having a local guide to the city and he showed us to all of his favorite spots - which were all cafes, restaurants and bakeries! He only visits once a year and he really misses all the foods here, so everytime he comes back he gorges himself. We were going to witness gluttony on an epic scale tonight!


€1000+ bottles of port. Most of them covered in dust. At €1000 I can see why...!


Picture by Marco

It was so nice seeing friends from back home, we had lots to catch up on! We used to go riding on our sportbikes to random sushi restaurants with them all the time. Marco is an avid photographer, so he showed me the latest in mirrorless camera technology, and we talked motorcycles with the both of them. Our time in Europe so far has been very social. We've spent so much time with family and friends, new and old, in the last six months! We love it!
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #456  
Old 25 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

We weren't that hungry ourselves, so we bookmarked several places for later with our camera!

I love listening to Marco talk Portuguese with his fellow countrymen! It really makes me wish I had learned a second or third language when I was a child. The Portuguese language sounds very curious. It's got a Latin root, so it's very similar to Spanish, but it sounds like there's bit of Russian thrown in there.

But unlike Spain, most people in Portugal speak English as a second language. There were very few times when we couldn't communicate here. I think there must be a lot of British tourists that come down here for vacation, they speak more English here than Spanish.


Statue of King Jose, near the beach


Just cannot get enough of these pastéis de bacalhau. These ones were filled with melted cheese. *drooling* just typing this blog entry out.


Sharing a glass of port after dinner! Very sweet! I like it!

During the evening, we saw Marco devour cups of coffee, pastries, dinner, port. And he was just geting started! He reminded of the time we went back to Toronto and I filled myself with all the food I missed. And it's not even Canadian food, it's the fact that you can get so many different cuisines from all over the world in the same city. I have a list of restaurants I want to hit the next time we visit our old home town!

I'll also need to shop for pair of draw-string pants in Toronto...


Double rainbow outside our hotel the next day
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #457  
Old 25 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Marco and Lori were on a whirlwind tour of Portugal for the next few days, we originally thinking about joining them later on, but since Neda was still sick, we stayed in Lisbon for a while longer to help her recuperate. It's been ten days now and she's still being kept up at night with all the coughing and the chest pains.

If it doesn't get better in a few days, we are going to go to a doctor and show him all the pictures of Neda's green loogies...


Staring out our window, we check the weather once in a while. Just as well Neda is sick, it's raining everyday, anyway...


One evening, the rains stopped briefly and we ventured out to try some of the food places Marco showed us


We are staying in an older part of Lisbon called Alfama

Fado, is the traditional Portuguese music that's played with a classical guitar. The Alfama district is the place to be to catch a show, but unfortunately, it was too early for that and we didn't want to stay out too late.


Marco's favorite bakery


Just the thing to lift Neda's spirits!


Walking around downtown Lisbon at night


Time to leave, still a bit rainy in Lisbon.

I know we're not really doing Portugal justice, only venturing out a couple of times for food runs. But we've got to get Neda back up on her feet first.
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #458  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/204.html



We originally wanted to head further north into Portugal to visit Coimbra and Porto. Marco had given us a list of all the touristy sights that they were going to see and we wanted to follow in their footsteps (albeit a bit more slowly) and possibly meet them as they made their way back to Lisbon.

They were our advance reconnaissance team, and when they reached Porto, Lori PMed us and told us to stay in Lisbon. It was cold and rainy where they were - still too early in the season to take motorcycles up there. They also tell us that this is unseasonably frigid and wet for Portugal this time of year. I replied, "Yep, RideDOT.com in da house".


So we're off to someplace warmer and drier. Not north.


Bye bye, Lisbon!

In addition to the crappy weather and Neda's lingering chest cold/bronchitis/pneumonia/ebola (thanks ADV doctors), we're also a bit down because all of our gear is slowly disintegrating around us. In the space of a couple of weeks, we've lost bike covers, various zippers on our luggage liners have come apart, my riding jacket zipper unzips by itself from the bottom-up turning itself into a cape, Neda's tankbag has holes in it and so does her motorcycle seat so the foam inside is waterlogged all the time, her sidecases are cracked at the bottom and leaking, my indestructible yellow dry bag has a tear in it. All of these problems are made worse because it's constantly raining here and water is getting in and soaking everything.

It's as if the warranty for everything we own just expired all at the same time.

Normally, I'd be serving cheese with all of this whine, but Neda is lactose intolerant... Add *that* to the list!


Dropped into Touratech to check out their bags and see if they have a replacement seat for Neda's bike.
No luck, but we did get our picture taken for their Facebook page.



Visted the Ducati dealership in the pouring rain.
Not to buy anything, just to look at bikes because that makes me happy...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #459  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

So we didn't manage to get anything replaced or fixed in Lisbon... kthxbye.


The town of Évora is only an hour away and is where we are meeting Marco and Lori as they finish up their tour of Portugal


Azulejos, which are these ceramic tiles, are commonplace all over Portugal

Azulejos are tin-glazed ceramic tiles which are used to decorate the outsides of buildings, walls, floors and even ceilings. They're not only ornamental, but also serve double-duty as a sort of insulation for temperature control.


Church of Bones! Well, not the entire church, just a Wing of Bones...

The Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones) is one of the most well-known tourists sights in Portugal. It's not built from bones, just the interior of one of the wings is lined with human skeletons. It was quite creepy to think how many dead people were being used as wallpaper here. And probably not serving double-duty as insulation...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #460  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Skull protrudes from a pillar. This was somebody's head attached to a body at some point.


More human skulls lining the ceiling


Thousands upon thousands of bones stacked up againt the wall.

The Chapel of Bones was built in the 16th century by a monk who wanted to bring home the point that life is transitory. The bones are the remains of his fellow monks. Perhaps there could have been a less creepy way of making his point?

At the entrance of the chapel there's a sign that reads, "We bones, lying here, for yours we wait".

AHHHHHH!!!!


Walking around the historic centre of Evora


Abstract sculpture overlooking the town
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #461  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Clothes being hung out. To dry?
No, it's raining so much here, this is the wash cycle...



Ruins of a Roman temple in Portugal, beautiful churches and castles surround it.


We found out that Évora is a UNESCO town, ie. total GringoTrail Town. Main economy: tourism.


Marco took us to his favorite restaurant in Évora. It was so well hidden, we worked up an appetite trying to find it!

For dinner, the restaurant served Black Iberian Pig, which was indigenous to the Évora region, and it was all-you-could-eat. Marco's gluttony was contagious and we all gorged ourselves silly on all this delicious food! It was a great way to end a fantastic time with our old hometown-friends.

But now with our plans to explore northern Portugal stymied, we had to figure out where to go to escape the cold weather.
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #462  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Devon, England
Posts: 30
If you decide you need new panniers, I can highly recommend ::::.ProjectVND.com.:::: built by a lovely chap called Vern, they're probably the strongest ones you'll come across. I love mine and use them daily in all weathers.
Reply With Quote
  #463  
Old 2 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Outer Sydney, Australia
Posts: 366
I think it's high time to get the girls back & get a break from the rain Gene
__________________
My memory is becoming that good, I should be able to organise my own surprise party soon
Reply With Quote
  #464  
Old 4 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/205.html



No place to go but south at this point.

Since we left the Algarve region in a rush to get to Lisbon last week to meet our friends, we're going to return to see it properly. Neda says she feels that her cold (or bronchitis we suspect) is in its final stages, so we both agreed that we shouldn't travel any more until she is 100% better. I think all this moving around and going out sightseeing in this cold and wet weather has actually prolonged her illness.


Heading south back to the Algarve


On the way, we pass through some quaint Portuguese towns...


...as well as some picturesque roads

After a prolonged absence, the sun joined us on our travels. The last couple of weeks without the Pula Girls have resigned us to rainy rides and when the weather actually clears up we are pleasantly surprised.

Our destination in the Algarve region is the very popular tourist town of Lagos. Tripadvisor says it is the #1 vacation destination in Europe. Which means that we are staying just outside of it, in a tiny beach-side suburb called Luz, because our Canadian pesos have informed us that we can't actually afford to be swanky, European vacationers...


I forced Neda to do this for a few days. There was little resistance

This cold/bronchitis has lasted for two weeks now. While her chest still hurts, at least the coughing has subsided and no more dark green loogies. We think the worst has passed, but just to make sure she is confined to bedrest, or patiofurniturerest in this case. We're getting a lot of sun down here, which is also helping to lift Neda's spirits.
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #465  
Old 4 Mar 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Hiking around Ponta da Piedade (Mercy Point)

When Neda is feeling better, we ride down to Ponta da Piedade, which is a small cape overlooking very scenic beaches 60 feet below some spectacularly-striated cliffs, with the same patterned rocks rising up just off the coast out of dark blue-indigo waters.


The sands collect in beaches between the cliffs like the webbing between your fingers[/size][/b]


Pillars of rock poke up above the waters all along the shoreline with the city of Lagos in the distance


In the summer, these beaches are packed to the brim with tourists

Because we are traveling in the off-season, it's not warm enough to go swimming or lie on a beach towel in a bathing suit. But part of the reason we are even able to stay here is because the prices are so cheap this time of year and we have the entire place to ourselves!


A break in the cliff walls lead to the next beach
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cuba, rtw, visit


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 4 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 4 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


 
 

Announcements

Thinking about traveling? Not sure about the whole thing? Watch the HU Achievable Dream Video Trailers and then get ALL the information you need to get inspired and learn how to travel anywhere in the world!

Have YOU ever wondered who has ridden around the world? We did too - and now here's the list of Circumnavigators!
Check it out now
, and add your information if we didn't find you.

Next HU Eventscalendar

HU Event and other updates on the HUBB Forum "Traveller's Advisories" thread.
ALL Dates subject to change.

2024:

Add yourself to the Updates List for each event!

Questions about an event? Ask here

HUBBUK: info

See all event details

 
World's most listened to Adventure Motorbike Show!
Check the RAW segments; Grant, your HU host is on every month!
Episodes below to listen to while you, err, pretend to do something or other...

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

"Ultimate global guide for red-blooded bikers planning overseas exploration. Covers choice & preparation of best bike, shipping overseas, baggage design, riding techniques, travel health, visas, documentation, safety and useful addresses." Recommended. (Grant)



Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance.

Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance™ combines into a single integrated program the best evacuation and rescue with the premier travel insurance coverages designed for adventurers.

Led by special operations veterans, Stanford Medicine affiliated physicians, paramedics and other travel experts, Ripcord is perfect for adventure seekers, climbers, skiers, sports enthusiasts, hunters, international travelers, humanitarian efforts, expeditions and more.

Ripcord travel protection is now available for ALL nationalities, and travel is covered on motorcycles of all sizes!


 

What others say about HU...

"This site is the BIBLE for international bike travelers." Greg, Australia

"Thank you! The web site, The travels, The insight, The inspiration, Everything, just thanks." Colin, UK

"My friend and I are planning a trip from Singapore to England... We found (the HU) site invaluable as an aid to planning and have based a lot of our purchases (bikes, riding gear, etc.) on what we have learned from this site." Phil, Australia

"I for one always had an adventurous spirit, but you and Susan lit the fire for my trip and I'll be forever grateful for what you two do to inspire others to just do it." Brent, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the (video) series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring!" Jennifer, Canada

"Your worldwide organisation and events are the Go To places to for all serious touring and aspiring touring bikers." Trevor, South Africa

"This is the answer to all my questions." Haydn, Australia

"Keep going the excellent work you are doing for Horizons Unlimited - I love it!" Thomas, Germany

Lots more comments here!



Five books by Graham Field!

Diaries of a compulsive traveller
by Graham Field
Book, eBook, Audiobook

"A compelling, honest, inspiring and entertaining writing style with a built-in feel-good factor" Get them NOW from the authors' website and Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk.



Back Road Map Books and Backroad GPS Maps for all of Canada - a must have!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80G/S.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events all over the world with the help of volunteers; we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, or ask questions on the HUBB. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 12:39.