Tuesday, 30 December 2008

CP - Portuguese Railways - New Timetables from 14th December

CP/Portuguese Railways Regional PDF timetables from 14th December 2009 now online!

See: www.cp.pt

Alvor to Fatima

A direct service between Alvor and Faro by Public Transport does not exist.

Your best option would be by bus.

Please see these articles on my blog from last year. This deals with a trip from Lagos.

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=Fatima

Alvor is between Lagos and Portimão and in my opinion your best bet would be to get a taxi or local bus into the centre of Portimão where you could connect with the services quoted.

I have published a copy of the relevant timetable on my blog here:(click to enlarge)



There is a direct bus service to Lisbon from Alvor operated by RENEX. However, this terminates at Gare Oriente and does not provide convienent connections to Fatima Services which leave from Sete Rios.

Trains are not that easy either as you have to transit Lisbon and disembark at Caxarias, 10km (6 miles) outside Fátima. There are only a few buses a day between Caxarias and the Sanctuary.

The only other means of transport would be by car. If you took at hire car, you should be aware that the main routes are toll-motorways.

Fatima lies about 350km North of Albufeira, in the Algarve. Alvor lies 50km from Albufeira via the A22 motorway. Total distance is circa 400km each way. If you have a car you can do a long day trip as follows:

- Follow the signs from Alvor of the A22 motorway
- Turn right onto the A22 motorway in the direction of Faro and Espanha.
-After +- 60km head onto the E01 / A2 / IP1 motorway toll road in the direction of Lisbon
-After 2 hours follow the signs for the A13 Santarém
-On arriving in the Santarem Area, head onto E01 / E80 / A1 / IP1 Motorway.
-Continue until you see the off-ramp for Fatima.
-Exit for Fatima.

London Gatwick (LGW) - Faro - Aer Lingus

Aer Lingus has just announced the establishment of their first non-irish base at London Gatwick (LGW).

The have also announced the launching of flights from London Gatwick to Faro.

See:

http://www.aerlingus.com/cgi-bin/obel01im1/bookonline/index.jsp

and:

http://www.lowcostportugal.net/companhias-aereas/faro-%E2%80%93-londres-gatwick-via-aer-lingus-abril-2009/2008/12/

Saturday, 27 December 2008

Lagos, Algarve, Portugal - Taxis

The phone numbers for the Cooptalgos - Taxi service in Lagos, Algarve, Portugal is:

Tm: 91 7813107
Tel: 282 763 587

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Lisbon to Obidos - Bus Services

Express Bus Services between Lisbon and Obidos are operated by Rodoviária do Tejo. They operate Lisbon Campo Grande (Metro) and take about 1 hr. 10 minutes.

Click on these links for the current timetables.

Lisbon - Obidos http://www.rodotejo.pt/horarios/todosresultados/5227/3260/1
Obidos - Lisbon http://www.rodotejo.pt/horarios/todosresultados/3260/5227/1

Note the ones marked "Aos Sabados, Domingos E Feriados." operate only at week-ends and on public holidays. The rest are daily services.

Comment on Airports Serving the Algarve

I concur. Faro Airport is already seeing a decrease in frequencies, destinations served and traffic.

With Beja Airport ready for ops in the next year, the new Lisbon Airport at Alcochete only going to be 1hr. 45min by car from the Algarve, and Huelva considering building an airport, I cannot see how an airport in the Portimão/Lagos area would be profitable. Indeed Faro Airport itself would be economically at threat with all these potential alternatives.

What is really needed is services from Faro to other destinations to open new markets. Low Cost flights to Paris, Porto, Lyon, Milan and Madrid, and perhaps Helsinki, Budapest, Warsaw and Toronto/Montreal would certainly broaden the region's appeal and catchment area, essential at present if we are going to see a substantial downturn in arrivals from the UK owing to teh downturn and the £/€ rate.

However, methinks that the new race track near Portimão/Mex Grande will be an influential factor in a decision for a local airport.

Friday, 19 December 2008

Lagos, Algarve, Portugal - Markets

As promised a google map extract showing the locations of the main markets in Lagos, Algarve, Portugal


View Larger Map

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Forum: http://britishexpats.com - Do not use

If you are thinking of using a forum dealing with the Algarve to find out information, I strongly do not recommend using http://britishexpats.com.

Their rules on providing useful information are such that is quite impossible to post anything useful. More than once I have tried to post sensible credible information published on this forum in response to questions by their members and have been booted by the moderator. This morning there was a question from a member about 3G PAYG Internet in Portugal. I posted a link to the article about this on my blog which provides a synopsis of the current operators in Portugal. It was booted. I have no such problem with other expats forums in the Algarve.

Also, you cannot use their private message system till you have posted three times. If you can't post private messages till you've posted three messages approved by a moderator, it's barmy.

So their member who could have found my info useful has lost out.

I recommend avoiding this particular forum.

Lagos, Algarve - Markets

There is a large general market on the 1st Saturday of every month by the football stadium/Sports centre.

There is a weekly produce market in the Mercado de Levante by the Bus Station.

On the Avenida in the centre of Town you will find the Mercado Muncipal, which opens early Monday to Saturday and where you will find fish.

There is also the Mercado de Santo Amaro at the top of the town which is a clone of the one down town and is also open Monday to Saturday.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Train/bus Lisbon-Sevilla - Christmas 2008

There are no direct trains between Lisbon and Seville. You would have to route via Madrid.

www.alsa.es
operate buses between Lisbon and Seville.

They are showing the following departures for 25th December 2008.

Departure schedules (25/12/2008): LISBOA ORIENTE - SEVILLA

Depart LISBON ORIENTE. 09:30
Arr: SEVILLA 17:45
Price One way 48,00

Depart LISBON ORIENTE. 20:45
Arr: SEVILLA 05:45 next day

Price One way 48,00

You should check with www.alsa.es Monday next week to esnure that the service will operate.

Algarve - Public Transport

Thank you for reading my blog.

You have many questions and I may not be able to answer all of them.

1) Porto to Albufeira.

There are two ways. Train or Rail.

As Albufeira Railway station is 8km from Albufeira, the cheapest and best way to make the trip will probably be by bus.

There are two bus companies that operate this route, via Lisbon.

Renex

website: http://www.renex.pt

Rede-Expressos

website: http://www.rede-expressos.pt/

2) Travel in the Algarve by public transport.

Again because the railway station is outside Albufeira, buses are your best option to travel around the Algarve.

See the following sites for more information:

Regional Bus Company - Eva Transportes

website: http://www.eva-bus.com/home.php?lang=UK

Website on local travel in the Algarve by Cubsur:

website: http://thomasallen.home.sapo.pt/travel/

3) Bus Passes

EVA Transportes have a 3 day regional tourist pass for € 22.50 which covers the Central Algarve between Loulé and Lagos.
Website: http://www.eva-bus.com/passe_turistico.php?serv=passe_turistico

With a student card you may get some discounts on certain services but you will probably be only able to find out if your Students card will be valid when you get here and buy tickets.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Portuguese Railways - Lisbon/Madrid - New Rail Times

As from 14th December 2008, the Lusitania Express has return to its old route operating overnight between Lisbon Sta. Apolonia and Madrid Chaumartin. This means again that there is now again a daily service between Lisbon and Caceres and Marvão and Madrid.

I publish an extract from the Portuguese Railways/CP website below.(Click on Image to enlarge)

CP - Portuguese Railways - New Timetables from 14th December 2008

New timetables will apply throughout the national CP/Portuguese Railways system as from 14th December 2008.

At present it is best to check the new timetables online at:

http://www.cp.pt/cp/displayPage.do?vgnextoid=87cbd5abe2a74010VgnVCM1000007b01a8c0RCRD

The pdf versions are not all online yet.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

New Hotel Aggregator Web Site - hotelscombined.com

I have just been introduced to the above site which certainly seems to give an excellent aggregation/summary of offers from hotels world-wide.

It is a clean site and the search facility is rapid.

I got excellent results on tests for hotels in Lagos, Lisbon and Rimin, Italy.

It is certainly worth a try if one needs to do a rapid survey of available hotels.

http://www.hotelscombined.com

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Flights from Copenhagen to Faro

Norwegian Air Shuttle who already operate Oslo to Faro are launch a service from Copenhagen to Faro following the demise of Sterling Airlines. The weekly service is due to start operation on 4th April 2009.

See:

http://www.norwegian.no/

Lisbon Airport - Buses to the Centre

I passed through Lisbon Airport this weekend en route to Lagos and as I had some time decided to check again the bus services from the airport.

What I was not aware of was that as well as the Aerobus service linking the airport with the Centre at Rossio and Cais de Sodre station, Carris, the Lisbon bus operator have been operating another service for the past few months that links the Airport with the Rede Expressos Bus Station and the Railway/Metro Station at Sete Rios/Jardim Zoologico. The bus continues to run up Avda. José Malhoa to service the many hotels there, (e.g. Ibis Malhoa) and on past S. Sebastião and Parque Metro Stations. The Service is called Aeroshuttle and costs Euro 3.00. This ticket also allows 24 hour travel on buses on the Carris network.

The actual stops at Sete Rios/Jardim Zoologico are under the motorway in front of the entrance to the Zoo about 150 metres from the bus/rail station.

I decided to use this service which takes between 20 and 40 minutes to travel from Lisbon Airport to Sete Rios/Jardim Zoologico. It enabled me to easily connect with the EVA Transportes departure from Sete Rios Bus Station to Lagos, which costs Euro 19.00 one way and takes 3 hrs 45 mins which is 45 quicker than the other bus operator RENEX.

More information can be found here:

http://www.carris.pt/en/index.php?area=servicos&subarea=servicos_tur_aerobus

Travel from Seville to Lisbon

You can take a train from Faro to Lisbon but there is also a bus service operated by alsa.es linking Seville at Lisbon.

The current timetable shows the following service:

Departure schedules (03/01/2009): SEVILLA - LISBOA SETE RIOS

Dept: SEVILLA 15:00
Arr: LISBON Sete Rios 21:15

These tickets should be purchasable in advance at the Bus Station in Seville or online.

If you want to travel in the morning, DAMAS/EVA operate the following bus service via Faro:

Dept: Sevilla 07:30
Arr: Faro 10:10
Dept: Faro 11:00
Arr: Lisbon Sete Rios 14:15

Tickets for the Faro to Lisbon sector may be purchasable in advance at Seville Plaza das Armas Bus Station as this was being advertised as a direct route on posters in the above bus station when I was there last week.

Sanctuary at Fatima - Contact Details

If you are trying to visit Fatima at any time the followinng may be of use:

Santuário de Fátima
Information
Ap. 31 2496 908
Fátima
Portugal

Tel. 249 539 623
Fax: 249 539 609
E-mail: info@fatima.pt

web: http://www.santuario-fatima.pt

Faro at this time of the year

Faro is the administrative capital of the Algarve and while you will find plenty of shopping there, both in town and in the Algarve Forum Shopping Centre it is not exactly what I would call a holiday destination.

It is a ways from the coast...the local beach is about 8km away at Praia de Faro.

Don't know where you got the idea that most places will be closed! Faro is the one place in the Algarve where most shops and restaurants will be open at this time of year.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Christmas 2008 - Lagos to Faro Buses

There is no direct bus or train from Lagos to Faro Airport.

You will have to get a bus or train to Faro and then another bus or taxi to the Airport.

As regards trains, the official CP timetable is clear. Year round there are two trains that operate daily that will meet your requirements:

Dept Lagos: Arr Faro:

06:11 07:51
08:19 10:03

There is also a departure at 09:46 arriving Faro at 11:27 which does not operate on Sundays or Public Holidays. Boxing Day is not a holiday in Portugal so it will probably run.

As regards buses, EVA Transportes has two buses that will meet your needs:

Lagos: 07:00 Faro: 09:00 Weekdays
Lagos: 08:30 Faro: 10:35 Daily year round.

From Faro Train/Bus Station you will either need to take a taxi or bus.

The following buses (16 or 14) run daily from in front of Faro Bus Station to the Airport:

0800, 0830, 0905, 1010, 1115,

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Seville to Lisbon and Porto

Sorry for the delay. Iḿ currently in Italy.

There is currently no direct bus service from Seville to Lisbon.

www.alsa.es have a daily service that operates via Faro in the Algarve.

Dept:SEVILLA 15:00
Arr: LISBOA ORIENTE. 21:00

www.eva-bus.com
also offer a service via their Faro hub to Lisbon Sete Rios bus station as follows:

Sevilla Faro 07:30 10:10 Daily
Faro Lisboa 11:00 14:15 Daily

or

Sevilla Faro 16:15 18:55 Daily
Faro Lisboa 19:00 22:15 Daily

Please note that these services are for Winter 08/09.

It is HIGHLY likely that these times will change for Summer 09. Please check in May or June on the respective websites.

As regards Lisbon to Porto, you can travel by bus or train.

If you visit my blog at:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com

and scroll down on the right until you come to the panel entitled

"Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links"

You will find links to Portuguese Railways, Renex Buses and Rede Expressos buses which will offer you a variety of options for the Lisbon to Porto Sector.

Granada - Seville - Lagos - Madrid

You cannot book tickets for the DAMAS/EVA Transportes Service between Seville and Lagos online.

However, there are two services a day, every day and I am sure you will have no problem arriving at Estacion Plaza das Armas in Seville and buying a ticket there are then.

I used the 08:20 bus last Friday from Faro to Seville, and it was only about 20% full.

Have a look at Cubsur's page here for more info:

http://thomasallen.home.sapo.pt/travel/001.htm


You are going to have great difficult getting back to Madrid Airport on time if your flight is early morning on December 22nd. You do not say what time your flight is. Be aware that Madrid Barajas Airport is a way out of town. You may need to sit the night at the Airport.

Your best bet would be to take an EVA Transportes Bus from Lagos to Lisbon Sete Rios, early on 21st December, 2008 and then connect with one of the buses operated by alsa.es for Madrid. Be aware that Estacion Sur Bus Station is on the South side of Madrid and you will then need to use the Metro to get to the Airport.

Timetable:

Lagos to Lisbon (Eva Transportes)

Lagos Lisbon
05:45 09:30 Weekdays
07:45 11:30 Daily
10:15 14:00 Daily
12:45 16:30 Weekdays and Sundays
15:30 19:15 Daily
18:15 22:00 Daily


Lisbon Sete Rios to Madrid (Click to enlarge)- www.alsa.es

Rimini to San Marino

Rimini regretably is a shadow of what it probably once was.

Today its beach front with dirty sand beaches and run down hotels and pensions brings to mind the old British resorts of Hastings and Blackpool years ago.

Yesterday, we took the bus from across the road from the station to San Marino, which is the third small country in the world in terms of size. Measuring no more than 6km x 6km, it is a perfect example of the imaginary mini-statelet imagined in many movies such as "the Mouse that roared".

However, it is one of the oldest independent countries in the world with history allegedly dating back to AD 300.

The main town (San Marino) is situated on top of a rocky outcrop 750m above the nearby Adriatic Coastal plain. There are spectacular views from the top over the surround countryside,

Access is easiest by bus from Rimini. The bus takes 45 minutes and costs Euro 7.40 return. There are several services each day. These leave from in front of Rimini Train Station.

Current Timetable as follows: (Click on Image to enlarge)

Sunday, 30 November 2008

Lagos to Rimini via Seville and Bergamo Orio A Serio Pt. 1

I left Lagos at 06:15 on a cold dark November morning.

Given the problems getting taxis at that hour, I walked to the halt at Meia Praia and boarded the train for Faro.

At Faro, I walked the 100 metres to the EVA bus station and after 30 minutes caught the 08:20 bus to Seville.

The bus stopped at the frontier for five minutes for Portuguese and Spanish Police to check ID Cards/Passports. It appears that after the recent spate of drug hauls in the Algarve, buses crossing internal schengen frontiers are being increasingly monitored.

We had a layover of 20 minutes in Huelva and arrived in Seville Plaza das Armas 10 minutes late at 13:00 (Spanish Time.)

I then took the C4 bus from outside Plaza das Armas (€ 1.10) to the Prado S. Sebastian Bus Station from where I walked the 400m or so to:

PENSION SAN PANCRACIO
C/ CRUCES Nº 9
41004 – SEVILLA
España

Tel: 34 5 441 31 04
email: pensionspancracio@hotmail.com

I found this Hostal on the web but chanced my luck being November. I got a single room for
€ 25.00 for a night.

This Pension is situated at the top end of the old area behind the Alcalar. Very clean and welcoming.

The room had no TV and there was a shared shower. I understand that there are double rooms with showers.

However, there is free wifi.

Showers are not available between 23:00 and 07:00. There is a curfew at 01:30.

I had to leave to get the bus to the airport from near the Prado Bus Station. The owners kindly awoke early to let me have a shower and let me out!

There is a lovely malmute cross in residence called "El Gordo" - The fat one! Very friendly.

I walked to the bus station at caught the bus to Seville Airport. Cost € 2.10.

Now en route to Milano Bergamo by Ryanair. Flight was full which is great news for traffic loadings.

Arrived Bergamo with 2 inches of snow on the ground. Took the bus to Milano Centrale Station. Euro 8.00 and 50 minutes transit.

Milan Central was chaos. Snow had caused havoc across the whole Northen Italian Rail network. I was heading for Bolonha and then Rimini. Ticket on a regional train to Bolonha was Euro 10.80.
Unfortunately one of the catenaries had come down on the line and trains were restricted to one way working on one section. As a result a trip that should have taken 2 hours took just under 4 hours. Was able to connect with a late running Rimini train. Only arrived in Rimini 1 hour late.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Armação de Pera to Alcantarilha Station

There is actually no station called Armacão da Pera. There is a Station called Alcantarilha/Armação da Pera but it lies inland 7,5 km.

Buses are operated by Eva Transportes (http://www.eva-bus.com) as follows:

Armação de Pêra to Alcantarilha(Est)
06:30 06:55 weekdays only (except public holidays)
12:30 12:55 weekdays only (except public holidays)
16:40 17:05 weekdays only (except public holidays)
16:55 17:00 weekdays only (except public holidays)
18:30 18:55 weekdays only (except public holidays)

I would be careful if planning to use this service as it may be linked to daily school runs and may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Trains from Faro to Coimbra

I am surprised that you are flying into Faro to get to Coimbra, as both Lisbon and Porto Airports are much closer.

Coimbra is between five and six hours by train from Faro via Lisbon.

On landing at Faro Airport you will then need to get a taxi to Faro Town. This should take about 15 minutes and cost circa +-Euro 10:00.

On this basis, by the time you have collected your bags, cleared formalities, etc., it is unlikely you will be in Faro until circa 20:15 or 20:30.

The last train of the day North leaves Faro at 19:03 - i.e. before your plane lands. However, this train would,anyway, miss the connecting train from Lisbon to Coimbra, the last departure from Lisbon Oriente being at 21:39.

If you intend to travel by train you will need to overnight in Faro and get the first departure the next morning.

This leaves Faro at 06:55 and arrives Coimbra-B Station at 11:46. This is a direct train and one does not need to change trains in Lisbon.

There is a daily long distance bus service operated by Rede Expressos leaving from Faro Bus Station, 100 metres from Faro Train Station, via Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station.:

Dept: Faro 20:30
Dep: Lisbon 00:15
Arr: Coimbra 02:50

If you miss this one there is a further departure as follows:

Dept: Faro 01:30
Dep: Lisbon 07:00
Arr: Coimbra 09:20

These are through connecting services operated by Rede Expressos - http://www.rede-expressos.pt/.

You can find links to and/or directly download train and bus timetables pdf format in the "Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links Panel" on the right hand side of my blog at

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Pousadas in the Algare

There are three pousadas in the Algarve - Sagres, Tavira and São Bras de Alportel.

More information here on the website of Pousadas de Portugal:

http://www.pousadas.pt

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Lisbon Sintra Cascais Travel Card

I was at Lisbon Airport, last Sunday, and noticed at the Tourist Counter that Portuguese Railways, (CP) and the bus operator for the Sintra/Cascais area, SCOTTURB, are now offering a one day Euro 12 travel combi travel pass which allows one to take a train to either Sintra, Cascais or Estoril and use SCOTTURB buses to make connections between the Stations.

There are trains from Lisbon Restauradores to Sintra every 30 minutes at least and the same on the Line from Lisbon Cais de Sodre to Cascais. This offer the opportunity of a great day out.

I attach below a copy of an extract from the leaflet. (Click on it to enlarge:)

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Lisbon to Lagos by Train

You can also take the train from Lisbon to Lagos from Gare Oriente. Price is € 4.00 to € 6.00 more than the buses.

The Advantages are that you can wander around, not be cramped and if it is a nice day you get to see a lot of the rural Alentejo. There is also a cafe/bar onboard. Its also worh it just for the privilege of crossing the 25 Abril bridge over the Tagus where you have a great view.

Was up in Lisbon at the weekend and came back on the 13:20 Sunday train from Gare Oriente. It was great and the countryside was beatiful. Lots of happy free range porkers running about under the cork trees. :))

Bear in mind the last 1 hour to Lagos is by local train from Tunes Junction.

Friday, 7 November 2008

Santiago de Compostela to Porto.

Sorry for the delay in responding owing to Internet Access problems.

There are no direct train links from Santiago de Compostela to Porto.

There are two trains daily between Vigo and Porto.

Connecting Services as follows:

Santiago da Compostela: 05:50
Vigo: 07:37
Vigo: 07:40
Porto: 09:55

Santago da Compostela: 17:38
Vigo: 18:59
Vigo: 19:44
Porto: 21:55

For more information see Spanish Railways (Renfe) renfe.es and
Portuguese Railways www.cp.pt.

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Restaurante o Prato Cheio Lagos - RIP Sr. Jõao Camacho

It is with great sadness that I have to report the passing away of Sr. João Camacho, owner of the popular Lagos Restaurante "O Prato Cheio."

It appears he died after falling of the rocks while fishing near Sagres.

A report can be found here (in Portuguese):

http://dn.sapo.pt/2008/11/06/cidades/pescador_desaparece_local_onde_amigo.html

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Algarve - Lagos

If you are planning to travel by Public Transport, strongly recommend you consider Lagos.

Faro has some historic sights but it is not by the Sea. It is inland on a lagoon. It can be visited in a day by train or bus from Lagos.

Albufeira, has good bus services but the train station is 6 km from town. It is also tourist heaven.

In Lagos, we have great beaches including the 5km long Meia Praia Beach, some wonderful views and the town itself retains a strong Portuguese flavour. However, our town council has taken upon itself to dig up part of our main avenida in at present as part of a town modernisation project. Nonetheless, I think it would be a great place to stay.

Have a look at these items on my blog:


http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=lisbon+lagos


As regards hotels in Lagos, have a look at the Albergaria Marina Rio or the Marina Club. You can find their details on this page or a Lagos-based event I am helping organise:

www.dancaiberica.org/index.php


Note that the Romatik is out of town and if you are not hiring a car you will be dependent on taxis or the daytime local buses to Lagos.

As regards taxis from Lagos Station or bus sstation...hmmmm!

Better pm me nearer the time with your details and I'll try to get one there for you.

Monday, 3 November 2008

Phone and Internet - Rural Areas - Algarve

See:

http://barlaventositblog.blogspot.com/2008/11/phone-and-internet-rural-areas-algarve.html

Faro to Lisbon - Scenic Alentejo route

Faro is only 280 kms from Lisbon and linked by a good toll motorway. It is therefore only 2,5 hrs drive.

I would suggest that if you do want to do something en-route you should consider the following:

Faro to Castro Marim.

Castro Marim to Mertola

Mertola to Beja

Baja to Evora

This will give you a taste of the interior of the Alentejo region. It will take about 5 hours. Certainly stop and walk around Mertola

Evora is a Unesco World Heritage Site. Hotels there include the IBIS. There are Roman Ruins, old churches etc. Spend the night there.

From Evora, Lisbon is only a 2 hours run.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Granada to Sagres, Cabo St. Vincente

If you really mean that you wish to get to the Lighthouse at Cabo St. Vicente, you should be aware that in winter there is only one bus a day on week days that serves this location. As there is no accommodation, if taking the bus it means that you would have to walk the 5 to 6 kms back to Sagres the nearest town. You may be able to rent a bicycle in Sagres and visit Cabo St. Vicente that way.

This bus is as follows:

Lagos Cabo S.Vicente 10:30 11:25 Mondays to Fridays only.

On this basis, if you are intended making a return trip from Granada, and Cabo St. Vicente is your final destination, a rental car would probably be a good option.

According to Google Maps, the distance is 562 km and will take about about 6 hours each way. I have driven all this route myself and it is motorway all the way to Lagos 40 kms from Cabo St. Vicente - there is a good road from Lagos to Sagres and Cabo St. Vicente. The only potential problem can be bottlemecks on the ring road around Seville.

See this link for a map:


http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&saddr=Granada,+Spain&daddr=Cape+St+Vincent+-+SW+Portugal&hl=en&geocode=%3BCbs3T9TiCub8FUPaNAIdBLd2_yFjIe6EuYKFRQ&mra=pe&mrcr=0&sll=34.452218,5.493164&sspn=16.814361,37.749023&ie=UTF8&t=h&z=7


If you intend using public transport, the only feasible means is by bus.

This will involve three buses:

Granada - Seville

You would need to get a bus from Granada to Seville Plaza das Armas Bus Station.

www.alsa.es operate from Granada to Seville Est. Prado but then you would need to get a local bus from there to Seville Plaza das Armas.

Buses from Seville to Lagos.

Seville Plaza das Armas - Lagos (Algarve)

Dept: Seville 07:30 Arr Lagos 12:00 Daily
Dept: Seville 16:15 Arr Lagos 20:45 Daily

With the second service you would have to spend the night in Lagos and then continue to Sagres/Cabo St. Vicente the next day. Similiarly, neither of the two buses connects with the only service to Cabo S.Vicente as indicated above. You would need to spend the night in Lagos or Sagres.

Lagos - Sagres - Cabo St. Vicente.

The first bus would connect with the following and later buses to Sagres.

Lagos Sagres 12:40 13:35 Daily
Lagos Sagres 13:35 14:40 Weekdays/Saturdays.

There are about 11 buses per day from Lagos to Sagres. Less at weekends.

A final thought. You might want to stay in Lagos and rent a scooter for the day and ride out to Cabo S.Vicente.

You could try:

Luis of Sidecar 32 in Torraltinha,Lagos is one.
He can be contacted via the following address.
Side Car 32 - Motociclos de Aluguer, Lda.
R. St Casa Misericórdia
8600-621 LAGOS
email: filipe_bolota@hotmail.com
Tel: 282798383

He can deliver a bike to you in town at the Luzcar Office behind the Repsol Garage on the main Avenida.

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Scandanavian Flights - Sterling Bankruptcy

The Algarve again is being hit by the current global recession.

This morning, Sterling A/S, the Icelandic owned Scandanavian based Low Cost operator has declared bankruptcy.

This affects twice weekly flights from Faro to Copenhagen, Stockholm and a weekly flight to Oslo.

This leaves Faro without any direct link to Stockholm to Copenhagen. Oslo still has a flight link to Faro via Norwegian Air Shuttle.

This a serious blow to the Algarve as a winter destination for Scandanavian Passengers. One can only hope that Easyjet, Ryanair, Air Berlin or TuiFly step in to fill this gaping hole.

See:


http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/feedarticle/7948284

Serra da Estrela or Guarda to Salamanca

From Guarda your only routing to Salamanca will be as follows:

Train:

1 train per day - Sud Express.

Depart: Guarda 20.42
Arrive: Salamanca 0.05

Bus:

There are two buses per day operated by alsa.es:

Depart: Guarda 12.45
Arrive: Salamanca 16.45

Depart: Guarda 23.30
Arrive: Salamanca 03.30 (Next Day)

Note from whichever town you will be in, in the Serra da Estrela, you will have to get a local bus to Guarda.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Hotel between Lisbon and Guia

Although it is less that 100km from Lisbon, I frequently use the Ibis Setubal Hotel which is about 40km from Lisbon Aiport on the old Lisbon to Algarve road.

See: http://www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-1275-ibis-setubal/index.shtml

It is ideal for kids as there is a garden and a pool.

Access is via Setubal and you can rejoin the motorway at Marateca.

See: http://www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-1275-ibis-setubal/location.shtml

Further south there are not many hotels of quality as folk tend to make the Lisbon to Algarve run in one fell swoop.

In my opinion and experience this would be the best option.

You are then less than 2 hours by motorway from Guia in the morning.

Be aware that the motorway is a toll road.

Mobile Phone Providers in Portugal

There are three main mobile providers in Portugal - TMN, Vodafone and Optimus.

They all offer PAYG (Pay as you go!)

At present they do not require registration. you can just go in and pick one up.

If you are buying a sim you must make sure you have an unblocked mobile as even vodafone portugal sims will not work in vodafone mobiles from other countries.

Vodafone tariffs here: (in Portuguese)

https://loja.vodafone.pt/tarifarios/vitaminas/Vita+Light+Total.htm

for the others have a look at

www.tmn.pt
www.optimus.pt

Lagos - Cantinho Algarvio

Restaurante Cantinho Algarvio in Lagos is having a tapas evening on the night of 8th November 2008. € 15:00 per head.

Cantinho Algarvio
Rua Afonso de Almeida 17-21 - Lagos
8600-674 LAGOS

Bookings: 282 761289 or info@ocantinhoalgarvio.com

Monday, 27 October 2008

Buses between Portimão / Faro and Evora

The following are the current bus schedules between Portimão / Faro to Evora operated by Rede Expressos - http://www.rede-expressos.pt/:

PORTIMAO EVORA Only Sundays except Public Holidays when runs on Monday.
Depart Arrive
17:20 21:15
Price € 15.00

PORTIMAO EVORA Only Sundays except Public Holidays when runs on Monday.
Depart Arrive
14:30 18:15
Price € 15.00

Faro Evora - Daily
Depart Arrive
08:15 12:30
11:15 15:30
16:30 20:45

Evora Faro - Daily
Depart Arrive
09:00 13:05
14:30 18:25
17:15 21:05

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Transport Option from Faro Airport to Lagos

The price for a taxi from Faro Airport to Faro station is currently in the order of between
€ 11.00 and € 13.00 plus possibly bag charge.

The price of train a train ticket from Faro to Lagos is currently €6,15 per person.

As you do not indicate where you are staying in Lagos it is difficult to price taxis but lets add € 20.00.

Total Cost: 5 x €6.15 + € 13.00 + € 20.00 = € 63.75

Lets say € 65.00

Currently, quoted prices for Faro Airport to Lagos for a six seater taxi is € 90 to € 110 & possibly bag charge.

So the costs of travelling by train are less.

Two provisos, however:

1) There are often no taxis waiting at Lagos station when trains arrive.
2) At present, the last train leaves Faro for Lagos at 20:11

You may find a transfer service more appropriate:

For example:

http://www.low-cost-transfers.com/faro-airport/index.php


are currently quoting € 77.50 for transfer of 5 people directly from Faro Airport to Lagos.

This avoids the hassle of 2 cabs and will take you to the door.

Saturday, 25 October 2008

Santarem Hotels

Santarem is not far from Lisbon and other tourist centres such as Fatima which is why there are a few hotels there.

Have a look at the following:


http://www.hotelalfageme.com/

Hotel Alfageme*** - Santarém

Hotel do Prado*** - Santarém
hotel.prado@mail.eurest.pt


http://www.maisturismo.pt/hsantarem

SANTARÉM HOTEL

Friday, 24 October 2008

New Low Cost Hotel Chain in Portugal - Star InnHotels

Sergio Bastos of http://www.lowcostportugal.net this morning cites a report in the Portuguese Press of the opening of a new "low cost hotel" in Porto operated by the group Star Inn.

The companies website is here:

http://www.hotelstarinn.com/


The First hotel opened on the 22nd October 2008 according to the company website.

The company envisages another ten hotels throughout Portugal over the next 5 years.

http://www.lowcostportugal.net also reports that the Easy Group will be opening a hotel in Porto in the first three months of 2009.

Bus/Train travel from Praia da Rocha to Porto

As indicated by algarveholidayer the train from Portimão Station is a good option.

1) Train

From Praia da Rocha you would need to get a local Vai-Vem shuttle bus via Largo de Dique (Lines 5 & 6) from Praia da Rocha to Portimão Station.

If early in the morning you may need to take a cab the 15 minute drive to the station.

See Cubsur's excellent page on this here:

thomasallen.home.sapo.pt/travel/011.htm

From Portimão you would need to get a local train to Tunes Junction - about 35 minutes.

At Tunes you would connect with either one of the twice daily Alfa-Pendular Services that run through to Porto via Lisbon or get one of the Inter-City Services to Lisbon Gare Oriente Station where you would connect with a Lisbon to Porto Train.

As Algarveholidayer indicated timetable info is available on the www.cp.pt site.

You can find a direct link to the pdf version of the current CP timetable for this route on my blog:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com

Scroll down on the right and you will find at panel entitled:

»» Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

In this panel look for:

>>>Portuguese Railways - 2008 - Lisbon - Algarve Faro/Lagos Timetable

>>>Porto - Lisbon - Porto Train Timetable

Click on each to download the timetables in pdf form.

You are looking at a minimum of 6,25 hours for the services using the fast Alpha Pendular from Tunes.

2) Bus

If you also look in the panel on my blog entitled

»» Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

You will also find two links entitled:

# RENEX Bus Service - Lisbon to Algarve timetable (pdf)

# RENEX Bus Service - Lisbon to Porto timetable (pdf)

Renex (www.renex.pt) operate seven daily bus services from Praia da Rocha to Lisbon Gare de Oriente Coach Station.

Renex also operate connecting buses to from Lisbon Gare de Oriente Coach Station to Porto.

The minimum transit time on this route is about 7.5 hours.

Health Spa in Lagos

Try the Solinca Health & Fitness Club underneath the Aqualuz Hotel:

Aqualuz
Morada:Aparthotel Aqualuz, R. Sacadura Cabral, nº8 . 86000 Lagos
Tel: 282 780 150
Fax: 282 770 628
E-mail:aqualuz@solinca.pt

Website:

http://www.solinca.pt/

(Needs Flash)

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Lisbon to Porto - Estadio de Dragão (FC Porto FC)

Firstly you need to understand the route.

There is no Metro at Lisbon Airport yet.

You would need to get a cab from Lisbon Airport to Gare Oriente Station.

This would take between 10 and 15 minutes dependent on time of day.

From there you would have to get a train to Porto Campanha Station.

Transit time about 2hrs 40 mins to 2hrs 50mins.

From Porto Campanha you would then need to get the Metro to Estadio de Dragão - The Porto Stadium.which is the terminus and four stations down on the ABC and E lines

To be safe and allow for problems you therefore need to allow 4 to 4.5 hours for the trip.

For information on the Porto Metro see:

http://www.metrodoporto.pt/pagegen.asp?SYS_PAGE_ID=873878

For information on the train times Lisbon to Porto go to my blog at

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/


Scroll down in he right hand panel till you find the section:

Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

You will find a link entitled:

"Porto - Lisbon - Porto Train Timetable"

Click on it and you will be able to download the current timetable in pdf format from Portuguese Railways for the Lisbon - Coimbra - Porto service.

Hope this helps.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Lagos - Algarve - Seville Bus Service

Thanks to Cubsur for this.

The timetable for this twice daily service has now changed to the winter service and are operating 2 daily every day of the week!

This is a change from what had previously been advised.

Timetable here:

http://thomasallen.home.sapo.pt/travel/001.htm


From Site of EVA Transportes

Lagos Sevilha 06:30 13:00 Diariamente
Lagos Sevilha 13:45 20:15 Diariamente

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

lisbon to cadiz

Without a doubt the most enjoyable way will be by hire car.

There is no convenient train services (you would have to go via Madrid and Seville), nor flights, (you would have to go via Madrid.)

As regards buses, alsa.es operate Lisbon Oriente (10 minutes from the Airport by cab) to Seville Daily via the Algarve.

LISBOA OR. SEVILLA 09:30 17:45 Euro 76,00 Daily Return
LISBOA OR. SEVILLA 20:45 05:45 Euro 76,00 Daily Return

TG Comes (http://www.tgcomes.es/) operate coaches between Sevilla to Cadiz every couple of hours.

On weekdays there are services leaving at 19:00 and 07:00 which would tie in with the arrival from Lisbon.
Return Price would be about Euro 23:00. Transit is under 2 hours.

Your round cost by bus would therefore be about Euro 100.00. For two people this would work out at Euro 200.00

The problem with this route is that it involves around 12 hours travel each way in a bus.

By Car, you have the chance to be more flexible and see more of both Spain and Portugal.

A Scenic route which I have driven much off as as follows: (Courtesy - Google Maps/Tele Atlas)

Driving directions to Cádiz, Spain from Lisbon Airport
521 km – about 6 hours 31 mins

See: Google Map at:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&saddr=Aeroporto+de+Lisboa,+Lisbon,+Portugal&daddr=IP2+to:37.874853,-6.514893+to:Cadiz,+Spain&hl=en&geocode=%3BFRSgRAIdgNWH_w%3B%3B&mra=dpe&mrcr=0&mrsp=2&sz=7&via=1,2&sll=37.605528,-7.602539&sspn=4.046645,9.437256&ie=UTF8&t=h&z=7

This routes you via the Alentejo region of Portugal, The town of Beja, the town of Serpa, (Great place for layover - see Casa da Serpa in the right hand panel), Seville in Spain, and Cadiz.

As regards Car Hire, I would suggest that you look at Auto Jardim - website here:

http://www.autocarhire.net/

They have offices at Lisbon Airport. Make sure that you tell them you are travelling to and from Spain.

Also remember we in Europe mainly use manual shift vehicles. Make sure if you need an automatic to specific this.

In November this year, rental prices for a week without optional insurance etc start from Euro 100 for a small hatchback.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Southern Portugal Itinerary

Sintra is only 30kms from Lisbon and is in fact now virtually a suburb of Lisbon.

I would suggest something along the following lines:

Full Day 1 -- Lisbon - See the Baixa, Alfama and possibly take the tram to Belem to see the Jeronimos Monastery and the tower of Belem.
Full Day 2 -- Lisbon - Take the Train from Rossio Station to Sintra (+- 60 minutes by train)- Full day in Sintra and/or take a bus to Cascais (Scotturb 403 every 75 minutes or so) or Estoril . Return from Cascais by train to Cais de Sodre station (+- 45 minutes). Wander up to the Bairro Alto for dinner.
Full Day 3 -- Lisbon - Tidy up what you didn't achieve on the first two days.
Full Day 4/5/6 -- Pick Up car at Lisbon Airport - Head North to Obidos, Batalha, Alcobaça and Nazare as public transport links to these from Lisbon are slow and convoluted. You might even have time to stay in Coimbra. There are IBIS Hotels in Leiria and Coimbra which might be good economic bases to stay at.
Full Day 7 - Head back via Santarem and the inland bank of the Tagus to Evora.
Full Day 8 - Day in Evora
Full Day 9 - Leave Evora and travel via Monsaraz (Fortified Hill top town) and Alqueva Dam to Serpa. (I recommend Casa da Serpa - see http://www.casadeserpa.com/ )
Full Day 9 - Travel via Beja and Mertola to Tavira.
Full Day 10 - Tavira and possibly old Town Faro or pop over the Guadiana to Ayamonte in Spain for Tapas.
Full Day 11 - Tavira
Full Day 12 - Lagos - Explore Lagos
Full Day 13 - Lagos - explore West Coast to Sagres.
Full Day 14 - Leave Lagos and make your way by car up the West Coast to Setubal. Stay at the IBIS just outside Setubal. Explore are and then head for Lisbon Airport (40 minutes).

I understand your concerns about driving on the wrong side. However, once you are clear of Lisbon, things are very easy as we have an excellent motorway system. To undertake the itinerary you want to do, hiring a car is the only realistic option if you don't want to spends hours grinding around on local buses or trains. This is particularly true when trying to visit Obidos, Nazare etc.

Check out some of my comments about this on my blog:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com
http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=Obidos+Nazare
http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search/label/Portugal%20Lisbon%20Praya%20de%20Rey%20Obidos
http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search/label/Portugal%20Lisbon%20Nazar%C3%A9
http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search/label/Portugal%20Lisbon%20Figueira%20da%20Foz

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Lisbon - Rocha Conde Obidos Cruise Terminal

Alcantara Doca as I said is the main dock for Cruise Liners in Lisbon, although there are some facilities at Sta. Apolonia.

However,there are several different quays at Alcantara, one of which is "O Terminal de Cruzeiros da Rocha Conde de Óbidos".

Link here to the relevant page of the the Port Authority here: (in Portuguese)

http://www.portodelisboa.pt/portal/page/portal/PORTAL_PORTO_LISBOA/PORTO_LISBOA/INSTALACOES_PORTUARIAS/TERMINAIS_CRUZEIROS/CRUZEIROS_ROCHA_CONDE_OBIDOS

Google maps link here:

http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=h&om=1&ll=38.703262,-9.162244&spn=0.003893,0.009216&z=17

The quay is 3 km from Praça de Comercio and about 5 km from Zuzabed.

Zuzabed is about 9km from the Airport and look at between Euro 10 and 20 depending on time of day and week and whether you have bags.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Birmingham to Porto - Winter 2008

I really do not think it is necessary to fly to Faro.

Ryanair fly Birmingham to Porto and are showing flights twice a week in December on Mondays and Fridays.

Flight No.FR 1072 16:15 Depart Brums 18:45 Arrive Porto.

From Porto Airport you can get a metro to Porto Campanha taking about 30 minutes and then a train from Porto to Coimbra.

You could then catch the 20:47 train from Porto Campanha arriving Coimbra-B at 21:44.

Alternatively, Easyjet fly several times a week from Luton to Lisbon. Prices for December as very low but departure time is very earlier at circa 06:35 or 08:35.

Again, fly to Lisbon, grab a cab for € 10 to Gare Oriente Station. There are hourly trains to Coimbra taking between 1 hour 45 min and 2 hours.

To see the timetable for the route go to my blog at

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/

Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

You will find a link entitled:

"Porto - Lisbon - Porto Train Timetable"

Click on it and you will be able to download the current timetable from Portuguese Railways for the Lisbon - Coimbra - Porto service.

Below you will find the timetable for the Faro Line as well.

Hope this helps.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Timetable of trains Porto - Vigo

Have a look at these previous articles on my blog.

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=Porto+Vigo

Note the service offered

Also, if you go to my blog at:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com

Scroll down on the right until you reach the panel entitled

Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

You will find a link entitled:

"Porto - Vigo Train Timetable (PDF)"

Click on it and you will be able to download the current timetable from Portuguese Railways.

You may find it better to use one of the cocah services operated by www.internorte.pt which operate via Porto Sa Carneiro Airport to Corunha.

Current Services and one way tariff as follows:(Click to enlarge)

Monday, 6 October 2008

Travel from UK to Porto by train

I am unaware of any service that provides through ticketing from the UK to Portugal by rail.

You should check with Eurostar for the Segment to Paris.

http://www.eurostar.com

Alternatively http://www.sncf.co.uk/ may be able to help although they do not have through ticketing to Portugal on their website.

It appears from www.cp.pt (Portuguese Railways) that tickets for the Sud-express can only be bought 60 days before hand at authorised stations. There are none available online.

Lagos to Porto

Basically, there are two connections a day from Lagos.

You can get more information here at the Portuguese railways website - www.cp.pt
.

There is a regional train departure from Lagos at 06:11 arriving Tunes Junction at 7h06.

There is an alpha pendular semi-tgv type train leaving Tunes at 7h26 arriving Porto - Campanha at 12h44.

There is a regional train departure from Lagos at 14:11 arriving Tunes Junction at 15h06.

There is an alpha pendular semi-tgv type train leaving Tunes at 7h23 arriving Porto - Campanha at 20h44.

The Price 2nd class will be € 48.85 per person each way.

You should check prior to departure at Lagos Station as winter timetables are not yet out.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Loule to Lisbon by Train

Timetables are available from Portuguese railways at www.cp.pt.

However, if you go to my blog at

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/

and scroll down the right hand side you will find a panel entitled:

Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

if you then scroll down this panel you will then find an entry entitled:

Portuguese Railways - 2008 - Lisbon - Algarve Faro/Lagos Timetable

Click on it and you will be able to download the latest timetable in pdf format.

I don't know if you know Loulé but if not be aware that Loulé station is 5 kms or so from Loulé and surface public transport to the station is patchy at best.

As regards prices, these should range between € 17.50 and € 19.50 per person one way.

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Private Sector Access to Space

With all the current problems facing the US and global economy, the world missed a tremendous groundbreaking piece of news on Sunday.

Elon Musk, founder of PayPal, and the man behind SpaceX finally succeeded on Sunday in launch the first private sector funded satellite launcher/rocket.

Albeit after 3 previous attenpts, his company has now achieved what to date has been the exclusive domain of Governments, Government funded Corporations and International Organisations, building and launching a privately funded space launcher - Falcon 1.

With the impending launch of the Falcon 4 and development of its own cargo/human transport capsule, the exclusivity of access to space will slowly be eroded.

Here is the launch video:

http://spacex.com/multimedia/videos.php?id=30

Medium cost Space tourism within 20 years may yet be a reality!

Well done guys! Your Perseverance has paid off.

Lisbon Airport to Cascais by Road

The following is the current route recommended by Via Michelin from Lisbon Airport to Cascais.

(Click on Images to enlarge)



Monday, 29 September 2008

Seville to Lagos - Winter 2008

Unfortunately, Damas have renewed their website which is not exactly user friendly.

Have a look at their Algarvean counterpart EVA Transportes at this link:

http://www.eva-bus.com/lagos_sevilha.php?serv=lagos_sevilha

As from 16th October until 31st May, services will not run on week-ends or public holidays.

The 08:00 and 16:15 from Sevilla Plaza das Armas bus station will I understand still operate on weekdays.

There is also a daily service from Seville Plaza das Armas to Faro leaving at 15:00 Seville time arriving at 16:30 Portuguese time. This is operated by alsa.es

Currently there is an 18:14 train from Faro arriving Lagos at 19:56. You should check both timetables in a week of so to confirm winter schedules.

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Been Away - Italy, Greece, Sea of Marmara

This year we have decided to take a totally different vacation well away from the hustle and bustle of Lagos.

As we are "independent traveller" types, most of the package tours leaving Lisbon left us cold.

Consequently, one early September morning we left Lagos by car and headed to Seville Airport, 250kms distant. The route was reasonably clear of traffic and with a 20 minute coffee and tostada stop at the Trigueros service area 75kms from Seville, arrived at Seville airport in 3 hours. Our route around Seville was via the Merida road and then the A66 bypass marked Cordoba - Aeropuerto, which skirts the city.

We then flew Vueling to Rome. Very clean aircraft. 80% loading. Arrived within 10 minutes of schedule.

Although, I have been to Italy previously, this has been limited to the North - Milan, Bergamo.

Rome was a big disappointment. From the minute, we landed at Fiucimo - Leonardo da Vinci, everything from the airport infrastructure to the railway station, to the railway carriages, to the ablutions in cafes was dilapidated. It may be amazing to say so, but in many areas such as public hygiene, efficiency of services etc., Portugal is way in advance of Italy.

Another interesting observation concerned the cost of accomodation in Rome and Italy in general.

We were looking for an IBIS/ETAP style hotel in easy strking distance of Rome by Public transport. Such an animal does not exist.

We ended up in a Residencial apartment, not far from the Trastavere station on the 8 tram route. This aparment which was not that well appointed cost circa € 90.00 per night. This was after days of searching the web for special offers. It is very clear that Italy's continued protection of local interests, and bureaucracy, despite 50 years membership of the EU and its predecessors, has effectively, culled any incentive to develop modern efficient budget hotel accomodation.

Using the public transport, Buses and Trams, we visited St. Peters, the Coloseum, the area of the Forum and, the Trastevere and Villa Borgia Areas.

The queues at the Basilica, Coliseum and Forum immediately put us off visiting them, save from viewing them from the outside. Even if you have tickets, you still have to queue to get in. Nonetheless, it was a wonderful experience walking the city that has been the hub of the Western World for over 2 millenia.

After 3 days in Rome, we took a train from Termini Station to Salerno on the Mediterreanean Coast just south of Naples. En route we could see Vesuvius in the distance. Evidence of the Naples rubbish crisis was still evident as we past through towns with large piles of rubbish still evident in places.

On arrival in Salerno, we checked into the Grande Hotel, the only one in Salerno where we found a cheap internet offer. It overlooks the bay towards Amalfi and the port. Salerno has a lovely old town and I sat in the cloisters of the Duomo, which had been built by a Lombardian Prince 1100 years ago and listened to a wonderful peal of bells.

The next morning, we sat on the top deck of the Grande Hotel, watching, until at lunchtime, we saw the Grimaldi Lines Ro-Ro freighter "Grande Anversa" hove into view. This was to be our home for the next 8 days on a return voyage to Piraeus, the port for Athens,Greece, the port of Gemlik, Sea of Mamara, Turkey and the port of Sea of Mamara, Turkey.

The "Grande Anversa" is a 38000 tonne ro-ro cargo vessel capable of carrying over 4000 small cars. Together with a fleet of sister ships, the vessel operates a regular freight line between Antwerp, Southern UK Ports, Setubal, Portugal, Valencia, Spain, Livorno, italy, Salerno, Italy, Piraeus, Greece, and the two small turkish ports which are actually small jetties situated next to car assembly plants. These vessels have 2 to 3 cabins which can take fare paying passengers.

Sailing from Salerno, we transited the Straits of Messina at night, but it was clear how narrow the straights were, hence then need for a pilot.

The next day we sailed through the sun baked Mediterranean. Day three saw us entering Piraeus as the sun rose. A fascinating port, with over 50 ships of different sizes alone, anchored in the roads. The port was humming with activity. We were advised we were going to be there for at least a day, so we got organised, wandered out the port gates and found a bus stop. With the help from locals we established that the B18 bus ran all the way into Omonium Sq. in the centre of Athens. So, of we went.

Arriving at Omonium Sq., we found our way to the Roof Tea Room at the Hondos Dept. Store which has a great view over the roof tops to the Acropolis and Parthenon. Having to watch the time, we chose to wander the streets of Athens in the direction of the Plaka area. Here in the shadow of the Acropolis, we wandered the old town, laden with tourist - ambushing merchants and then up a side street where we found a great deal for lunch.

The Taberna in question is the:

ΣΧΟΛΑΡΧΕΙΟΝ
Tripodon 14
Plaka
105 58
Athens

website: www.shorlarhio.gr
email: info@sholarhio.gr

Tel: 210 3247605

The next morning, we still had not sailed so nipped out to a large hypermarket situated 400 metres from the dock entrance.

Sailing at lunchtime, we had a great view of Piraeus, Athens, and the Acropolis in the distance as we ploughed off North through the Aegean and passing islands such as Skiros en route.

Unfortunately, we transited the Dardenelles during the night, but day break saw us in the Sea of Marmara, with Asia-Minor/Anatolia to our South and European Turkey to our North.

Unfortunately, at both Turkish ports we were delayed at anchor for several hours while berths came available. Consequently, although we could have gone ashore, it was near evening before we were able to and as the ports were aways from town centres, we erred on the side of caution and stayed aboard.

Our return trip though the Dardanelles was again by night and the return through the Aegean was under cloudy skies. However, we had a great view of a tornado/waterspout to starboard of the Peloponese.

We had a great early morning transit through the Straits of Messina with wonderful views of Etna and Stromboli although our arrival in Salerno was under wet skies.

We had real difficulty finding good cheap accomodation for one night and ended up in a half complete Albergo.

Our return train to Roma and connection to Rome airport was uneventful, as was our excellent return flight with Vueling.

Seville - Lagos was accomplished in late evening in 2 hours 50 minutes.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Old Town Lagos Accomodation - São Sebastião

The nearest ones I can think of to your location will be:

Pensão Residencial Lagosmar
Rua Doutor Faria e Silva nº 13
8600-734 Lagos
Lagos - Faro
Tel. +351 282 763 722
Fax. +351 282 767 324
e-mail: lagosmar@dfhoteis.com

http://www.dfhoteis.com/pagina-1.asp

or

Residencial Solar (Just in front of the Hotel Tivoli)

Rua António Crisógono dos Santos 60, N of Lagos
Lagos Portugal

Telephone: 282 762 477

Email: residencial-solar@netvisao.pt

Vueling.com - Baggage Allowance

See:

http://www.vueling.com/info/conditions.php?language=EN#7

8.5 Baggage weight per passenger: Each passenger can transport in the hold (according to luggage allowance) up to a maximum of 20kg of luggage, for which they must pay the corresponding fee (€10 per flight and suitcase when this service is contracted through our website, and €20 per flight and suitcase when it is contracted in the airport). The passenger must pay €8 per kg of luggage that exceeds the 20kg limit mentioned above. The carrier reserves the right to increase, reduce or annul these amounts at any time. The carrier may refuse to transport the totality or a part of the luggage that exceeds the weight stipulated in clause 8.5, or which has not been previously paid for.

Lisbon Airport to Cascais

Transfers from Lisbon airport to Cascais

There used to be a bus operated by Scotturb but this was suspended in 2007 owing to poor traffic loads.

There are three ways to get from Lisbon Airport to Cascais.

1) Bus/Rail

There a bus service operated by Carris called Aerobus.

Information on the service can be found here:

http://www.carris.pt/en/index.php?area=servicos&subarea=servicos_tur_aerobus

This will take you from Lisbon Airport to Cais de Sodre Station where you can get regular suburban trains (every 15 to 20 minutes) to Cascais. Trip takes about 40 minutes.

2) Taxi - Lisbon - Airport to Cascais

To arrange a taxi, check with the Tourism Desk in the Arrivals Hall at the airport when you arrive. I would think you would be looking at +-€ 70, although prices rise at night and week-ends and baggage is extra.

2) Private Transfer

Low Cost Transfers are currently quoting € 36 for a transfer Lisbon Airport to Cascais.

See:

http://www.low-cost-transfers.com/lisbon-airport/

3) Hire Car

Some rental operators in Lisbon have daily car hire offers. Unfortunately, I can remember who, as it a year or so I saw the adverts when up in Lisbon. I don't normally recommend hiring cars if it is one's first visit to Lisbon/Cascais but it may be an option for you.

Friday, 29 August 2008

Prepaid Mobile Broadband - Portugal

Both Vodafone Portugal and TMN have launched in the past week Prepaid Mobile Broadband internet services.

These are ideal for persons making regular but short visits to Portugal or any one visiting Portugal who needs internet access.

For more information see this article on my IT Blog:

http://barlaventositblog.blogspot.com/2008/08/prepaid-mobile-broadband-portugal.html

Santander to Porto by Train

At present train travel between Spain and Portugal is difficult as there are only 4 trains a day between the two countries. This will all change in a few years when the new TGV style high speed train network enters service.

You trip will require at least two changes:

Service as follows:

Santander 16:55
Valladolid 21:07 (Mondays to Saturdays).
Valladolid 03:20 (Sud Express)
Coimbra-B 08:49
Coimbra-B 09:29
Porto 10:39

For more information see the sites of:

Renfe - Spanish Railways - renfe.es
CP - Portuguese Railways - cp.pt

Algeciras/Malaga to Lisbon

There is no direct bus service from Algeciras to Lisbon.

One can get a bus daily from Algeciras to Seville as follows:

Operator: T.G. Comes

Website: http://www.tgcomes.es/horarios_33.htm

Algeciras to Seville:

Dept. Arr:

08:00 11:30
11:30 15:30
14:00 17:30
16:30 20:00

From Seville to Lisbon there is a service operated by www.alsa.es as follows:

Seville to Lisbon Sete Rios Coach Station

Dept. Arr:
15:00 21:15
23:59 06:00

From Malaga to Lisbon there is a daily service operated by www.alsa.es as follows:

Malaga to Lisbon Sete Rios Coach Station

Dept. Arr:
21:00 06:00

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Lagos to Fatima

It is possible to do it by normal bus...it will be a long day but doable as long as you are only going to visit the Sanctuary, and spend few hours on pilgrimage.

Eva Transportes have a bus departure (Mondays to Fridays) from Lagos Bus Station at 05:45 arriving Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station at 09:30.

There is a Rede Expressos bus leaving Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station at 10:30 arriving Fatima at 11:55h.

For the return there is a Rede Expressos Bus from Fatima at 16:30 h arriving Lisbon Sete Rios at 18:00 h.

There is an Eva Transportes bus from arriving Lisbon Sete Rios at 18:30 arriving Lagos Bus Station at 22:15. There is one bus after this at 20:30 if you miss this one.

Rede Expressos Website (Only Portuguese)- http://www.rede-expressos.pt/0010.asp

Eva Transportes -
http://www.eva-bus.com

Return Trip should cost about e 55.00 per person.

Santiago da Compostela to Lisbon

Sorry, have been off-line unexpectedly for the week-end.

www.alsa.es have a bus departure from from Santiago da Compostela at 10:00 (Spanish Time) routing via Porto and arriving Lisbon Oriente at 18:00.

There are no direct trains between S. de Compostela and Porto.

You would need to get the 05:50 from S. de Compostela arriving Vigo at
07:37. Then the 07:40 from Vigo arriving Porto at 09:55 (Portuguese Time) Then the 10:52 from Porto arriving Lisbon Sta. Apolonia 14:00.

See www.cp.pt for more info.

As regards booking tickets, Bus Station in Santiago is probably the best.

For trains, probably Vigo Station for the Sector Vigo to Porto and then Porto station for the Porto to Lisbon.

You can try the only websites from bookins but they can be difficult and slow at times.

You best bet is probably the bus as you should be able to book a through ticket.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Lisbon airport to bus station for Evora..

There is no Metro from Lisbon airport at present and there are no direct buses from Lisbon Airport to Sete Rios Bus Station from where buses from Evora leave.

The best and quickest way to get between the two is by taxi which should take about 10 - 15 minutes depending on traffic.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Public transport Porto to Madrid

There is no direct train service from Porto to Madrid.

In fact at present passenger train services between Portugal and Spain
are not good!

You could get a train from Porto to Coimbra B and then connect with the nightly Lusitânia Comboio Hotel Train at 0:13 (Midnight 13 minutes) and arrive Madrid (Chamartin) at 8.40 the next morning. This is the only rail link.

The quickest way may be by air.

www.ryanair.com fly Porto to Madrid daily.

Bus company www.internorte.pt operate a daily coach service (current timetables) leaving Porto at 09:45 arriving Madrid Est. Sur. at 19:45 Spanish time.

Five nights a week (except Weds./Sat.) there is a service leaving Porto at 20:30 arriving Madrid Est. Sur. at 06:30.

Rail - Portugal - Algarve to Porto and Obidos

The Train from Lagos to Lisbon - Change at Tunes as you indicated.

Years ago, the train used to run to Barreiro on the South Side of the Tejo and then you got a ferry across.

However, for the past 4 years there has been a rail link over the Tejo under the 25 de Abril bridge which give one a spectacular view of Lisbon and the River.

Most trains now stop at two stations in Lisbon:

Entrecampos - Best for Central Lisbon. Metro Station
Gare Oriente - Main interchange with line running North for Porto Campanha.

Certain interregional services stop at Lisbon Sete Rios as well.

From Central Lisbon trains depart Sta Apolonia Station, near the baixa. (Metro now open). They run through Gare Oriente running north.

Trains South leave from Porto Campanha. To get to Obidos you will have to change at Coimbra-b, Bifurcacao De Lares, and Caldas Da Rainha stations. Transit time is about 5 hours. Note that the station in Obidos is outside the town.

There is no direct train from Obidos to Lagos. Travel time will be between 7,5 and 8 hours and you will have to change train in Monte Abraao, Sete Rios- Lisbon and Tunes.

You may find this link on my blog and the links to timetables shown in the right hand panel of the blog of use:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/2008/07/caldas-da-rainha-to-faro-by-train.html

Saturday, 16 August 2008

bus/train travel to obidos/praya de rey from lisbon

There is no direct train service from Lisbon Airport to Obidos and Obidos station is situated outside of the town.

Public Transport Services outside Greater Lisbon start to shut down on weekends around 20:00

The last bus from Lisbon to Obidos on Saturdayleave Lisbon Campo Grande at 16:45.

As regards trains there is only one train that will serve as follows:

Lisboa - Gare Oriente Station (Ten Minutes by Taxi from Airport)
Dept: 19h57
Obidos
Arrive: 22h48

One changes at Sete Rios and Mira Sintra-melecas stations en route.

Be aware that there will probably be no taxis at the station when you arrive unless you arrange one beforehand.

I recommend you see the following article on my blog which also deals with this matter.

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=praia+del+rey

or

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/2008/06/lisbon-airport-to-praia-del-rey-resort.html

Friday, 15 August 2008

Train/Bus from Lisbon to La Coruna

Unfortunately there is no direct train service between Lisbon and La Coruna.

You would need first to get to Porto, then Vigo and then La Coruna.

See these articles on my blog for previous articles on this:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/search?q=la+coruna


I have also published there an extract from the current Lisbon - La Coruna Bus service operated by Internorte. (Click on the image to enlarge it.)


Thursday, 14 August 2008

Driving from porto to the algarve

The drive from Porto to Lisbon or the Algarve is no great problem. There is an excellent toll motorway network covering the whole route.

With stops Porto to the Algarve would take about six hours via the toll motorway. (Tolls for a small car would be about € 35.00)

In September/October you will probably have no problem arranging accomodation "on the fly", save in Lisbon should you wish to lay over there.

As regards destinations in the Algarve, I suspect that from your requirements, that Lagos would be your best bet. It's not just that I live here..but it has the sort of mix you describe.

If you want real partying then Vilamoura or Albufeira are probably more suitable. However, bear in mind that by the end of September, the summer is over and the partying substantially reduced.

Also bear in mind that there you are going to traverse some wonderful parts of Portugal. If you chose to take your time driving from Porto, you could visit Coimbra, Figueira da Foz, Nazare, Obidos, Alcobaça, Batalha, Sintra.

Porto and Lisbon are also great places to visit.

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Lisbon Airport to Lagos by Eva Bus - Minimum Times

In summer these buses do fill up.

Tickets may be transferable but only if presented to the ticket office one hour before the bus in question departs.

However, I can tell you now from personal experience that if your plane arrives at 09:05 there is absolutely no way you will make the 10:30 EVA coach from Sete Rios bus station, unless you are only travelling with carry-on bags and even then it will be a push.

It will take at least 45 minutes from landing to clearing immigration, collecting your hold baggage and clearing customs. You then need get a cab and if there is a queue for taxis that could take another 10 minutes. You then need to allow for at least 15 minutes to get to Sete Rios bus station.

The above timing does not allow for unforeseen events.

Much better to take your time and get the 12:30.r at least 15 minutes to get to Sete Rios bus station.

Monday, 11 August 2008

Porto Airport to Espinho

This is quite simple.

You need to get the Light Rail Metro from Porto Airport to Campanha Station via Line E.

See:

http://www.metrodoporto.pt/pagegen.asp?SYS_PAGE_ID=871913&id=154

and

http://www.metrodoporto.pt/document/827457/874411.pdf

From Porto Campanha there are trains between three and five times an hour to Espinho from 05:09 until 01:00, Takes up to 25 minutes.

For timetable in pdf format See:

http://www.cp.pt/StaticFiles/Imagens/PDF/Passageiros/horarios/urbanos_porto_2007/aveiro_linha.pdf

Movistar mobile phone from Spain

Movistar is a Spanish mobile phone provider and does not operate in Portugal. It would only work if you charge it up with money in Spain and are prepared to paying roamng charges in Portugal.

It probably will be blocked so that it only works with Movistar sim cards.

You may find a shop that will unblock it for a fee or you may be as well to buy a new phone here. You can pick up basic ones from any of the three operators for e 30.00

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Living in Sagres

Sagres is effectively a small village. It is great in summer and on sunny winter days but it is situated at the end of a small peninsula jutting out into the Atlantic. It has its own micro-climate and as one can see from the terrain very few trees because it is so wind-swept.

There is a health centre there, but the nearest hospital of size is this private one in Lagos or the public one in Portimão. That having been said, from Tavira, one would have to go to Faro/Olhão for a sizeable hospital and many services and large shops

There are a couple of local Alisuper supermarkets in Sagres and a bakery. A Lidl has just opened in Vila de Bispo, which is the district town, 8kms away. Be aware for all dealings with authorities one would have to go generally to Vila de Bispo. There is a Ecomarche at Budens, half way to Sagres but for large items and things like dental care, Lagos would be your nearest.

Portugal - Metro / Light rail systems

At the present time, I am not aware of any green-site metro projects in Portugal.

However, there are several expansion projects in hand for the three main metro systems and one project to convert a rail ine to light rail.

At present there are three operating Metro/MetroLRT systems in Portugal and one project just about to start awarding contracts.

1) Metropolitano de Lisboa.

Cut and cover third-rail system first started in 1958. Currently has two line extensions under construction and long term plans for a further three extensions.

Website here in English:

http://www.metrolisboa.pt/Default.aspx?alias=www.metrolisboa.pt/eng


2) Metro do Porto

Light Rail system serving Porto, Portugal's second city. Operations began a few years ago. 7 Lines.

Website here in English:

http://www.metrodoporto.pt/


The website does not show any indications of future works but at least two recent press reports in the Portuguese press indicate that line extensions are planned.

See: (Both in Portuguese)

http://www.onoticiasdatrofa.pt/1/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2791&Itemid=51

and

http://jn.sapo.pt/paginainicial/pais/concelho.aspx?Distrito=Porto&Concelho=Matosinhos&Option=Interior&content_id=972756

3) Metro Transportes de Sul

This a light rail system being developed to serve the suburbs of Lisbon south of the Tagus.

First lines enter service last year and the system is currently being expanded.

Website here in Portuguese:

http://www.mts.pt


4) Metro Mondego

Serving the Mondego valley area from Coimbra, this project envisages converting an existing full gauge line to Light Rail and developing a network form there.

Website here:

http://www.metromondego.pt/

Also always keep an eye on this site which may from time to time have nuggets of useful info.

http://www.lrta.org/


and

http://www.lrta.org/world/worldp-t.html#Portugal

Biarritz, France to Faro, Algarve, Portugal

This is a difficult one.

Public Transport links between France, the north of Spain and the Algarve are not good.

From Biarritz, apart from car, you probably are restricted to train or long distance coach.

Train:

1) The TGV/Sud Express leaves Biarritz at 20:49, arriving Irun at 21:23.
Departs Irun at 22:00 and arrives Lisbon Oriente at 10:54 the next day.

2) There is a connecting train to the Algarve departing Lisbon Oriente at 13:20, arriving Faro at 17:22 or Lagos at 17:55.

Buses:

Eurolines Portugal have a service advertised from Bayonne to Faro here:

http://www.eurolinesportugal.com/horarios_tarifas/ht_08.html


Although the service shows a timetable for winter 2007 I understand that the service still operates.

Dept: Bayonne at 23:55
Arr: Faro at 18:15 next day.

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Salamanca to Tavira

Train:

The Sud-Express Paris to Lisbon train leaves Salamanca daily at 04:51 in the morning arriving Lisbon Gare Oriente Station at 10:54 the same morning.

There is a train leaving Lisbon Gare Oriente Station at 13:20 arriving Faro at 17:22. There is a train leaving Faro at 17:30 arriving Tavira at 18:10.

For the return there is a departure from Tavira at 7:46 arriving Faro at 08:24. There is a departure from Faro at 09:05 arriving Lisbon Gare Oriente at 13:06. There is a Sud-Express Lisbon to Paris train Departing Lisbon Gare Oriente at 16:14 arriving Salamanca at 00:05

For more information on timetables please see the Portuguese Railways website at www.cp.pt. Please note that these times are based on the current summer timetable and may change after September with the introduction of the winter timetable which is not yet available.

Bus

There is currently a www.alsa.es bus service leaving Salamanca for Seville (weekdays only) as follows:

Dept: SALAMANCA 06:45
Arr: SEVILLA 14:15

There is a departure from Seville Plaza das Armas for Tavira as follows:

Dept: Sevilla 16.15
Arr: Tavira 18:10

For the return, there is a departure as follows:

Dept: Tavira 08:10
Arr: Sevilla 11:30

Dept: Sevilla 14:00
Arr: Salamanca 21:25

Please note that these times are based on current timetables and may change. You should check with the operators website for actual times prior to leaving.

Saturday, 2 August 2008

Lisbon to Marbella

The easiest and cheapest way to do this trip via public transport is as follows:(Click on images to enlarge)

1) Bus from Lisbon Sete-Rios to Sevilla. (www.alsa.es)



2) Bus from Sevilla to Marbella - Autobus de los Amarillos -



Other routes could include flying low cost to Madrid and then Malaga and taking a bus to Marbella. Bus Lisbon to Madrid and then Bus Madrid to Marbella.

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Free Wifi Access in Tavira

In Tavira, the council have a wifi hotspot with free access at:

Câmara Municipal de Tavira - Tavira

Morada Praça da República

Cód. Postal 8800-951

Tavira

Telefone 281320500
Available: 9:00 às 18:00

Free Wifi Access in Lagos

The only place I know for sure you can do this in the area (because I've used it) is at the Centro Cultural de Lagos, in downtown Lagos. The Building & Cafe has free wifi access.

Centro Cultural de Lagos

Morada: Rua Lançarote de Freitas
8600-605 Lagos
Telefones: 282 770 450

Lisbon hotels

I would recommend the Ibis Hotel Malhoa which is situated about 400 metres from Sete Rios Bus Station, from where the bus to Seville departs.(All down hill).

see: http://www.ibishotel.com/ibis/fichehotel/gb/ibi/1668/fiche_hotel.shtml

You would have to take a taxi anyway from the airport as there is no metro nor convenient bus service from the airport serving budget hotels.

Monday, 28 July 2008

Lisbon -Seville/Sevilla - Lisbon Bus Services

The following are the current (July, 2008) bus/coach timetables for the service Lisbon - Seville - Lisbon operated by www.alsa.es. (Click on images to enlarge)

Seville - Lisbon



Lisbon - Seville

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Vilamoura to Fatima

The most direct route from Vilamoura to Fatima by public transport is by bus from Quarteira, the town right next to Vilamoura.

Bus operator Rede Expressos offer several services daily via Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station.

The following is an extract from there current schedule:(Double Click on the + sign below to enlarge )



By train, you would have to get a service from Loulé Station, 6km from Vilamoura to Lisbon Gare Oriente.

See the second part of this post on my blog for more details:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/2007/08/algarve-albufeira-fatima.html

Friday, 25 July 2008

Early Morning transfer from Albufeira to Lisbon airport

Unless you go up to Lisbon the day before, the only way to do this is by bus:

Rede expressos have a departure from Albufeira Main Bus Station at 02:20hrs. arriving Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station at 05:30.(Current Price - 18 Euros) You would then need to take a taxi to the Airport.

Renex have a departure from Albufeira Main Bus Station at 01:55hrs. arriving Lisbon Gare Oriente Bus Station at 05:00. You would then need to take a taxi to the Airport.

You can find a link to timetables on my blog here:

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/

Scroll down on the right hand side panel till you come to:

»» Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

»» Continue scrolling down in this section till you come to the timetable you want.

Please note that the trains do not offer a suitably timed service.

Train or drive from Lisbon to Lagos?

Remember, you are from Texas!

Although you guys think the price of petrol is high stateside right now, it is currently around the equivalent of US$ 10.70 a gallon here in Portugal. A small car will use about 3 to 4 gallons for the Lisbon to Lagos run depending on loading. Add the tolls and you are looking at a minimum of about US$ 55.00 if you take the motorway.

Also as you are from the otherside of the pond, remember that most vehicles this side are manual shift. If you need an automatic, remember to specify this when booking and be aware that you will pay a premium for an automatic vehicle.

Train tickets are about € 20.00, not US$ 20.00

You will need a car in the Algarve so better to hire when you arrive the Algarve.

As regards train stations, your best bet is to take a taxi from Lisbon Airport to Gare Oriente Station. (About 5 minute drive.)

From there you can get either a long distance RENEX Coach to Lagos or the train, changing at Tunes.

For direct links to timetables, see my blog at

http://barlaventostravelblog.blogspot.com/

Scroll down on the right hand side panel till you come to:

»» Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

»» Continue scrolling down in this section till you come

Portuguese Railways - 2008 - Lisbon - Algarve Faro/Lagos Timetable

or

RENEX Bus Service - Lisbon to Algarve timetable

Click on these to download the timetables from the respective sites.

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Faro to Evora/Viana do Alentejo

To get from Faro to Viana de Alentejo is not that easy.

You cannot book through tickets.

The Sector Evora - Viana de Alentejo is operated by a local bus company and according to the local Council, buses only run on this route Mondays to Fridays.

See:
http://www.cm-vianadoalentejo.pt/pt/conteudos/informacoes+uteis/transportes/

Operated by Rodoviária do Alentejo - Line 8146

Departures from Évora: 07h15 - 17h30 - 19h15
Departures from Viana: 06h49 - 08h10 - 19h55

Services depart from Evora Bus Station

For the sector Faro to Evora one has two options:

1) Bus:

Service operated by Rede Expressos - http://www.rede-expressos.pt/0010.asp

Current Timetable as follows:



2) Train

Portuguese Railways www.cp.pt operate two services a day between Faro and Evora with changes in Funcheira and Beja.

Current Timetable as follows:

Dept. Arr.
Faro 9h05 Evora 14h24
Faro 13h08 Evora 17h41