Aljezur – Ageless people in a timeless place

Aljezur knows no time. I wonder if you can even find a single clock in this small community. Here, life here seems timeless. Is it morning, late in the evening or still around noon? You couldn’t tell by observing life in the streets of this 3.370-inhabitants-village. You’ll find the little bars and cafés occupied at any daytime. Ageless people of any age hold a refreshing Super Bock in their hands while talking about jobs they left behind, the lack of understanding towards 9-to-5-people and – of course – about surfing. Their skin sun-petted, their clothes vintage and be it 8am or 6pm – they’ll take any invitation for a cocktail to ponder on life and all its beauty. And what beauty can be seen at this very place. No wonder, free-spirited minds from all over the world assemble in Aljezur.

Here, the Algarve has lost the high-rise tourist hotels and car-blocked streets of its Southern coastline behind the ranges. You won’t arrive in Aljezur by advice of your travel business. You may find your way here by accident, by following the N120 North en route back to Lisbon or just by a fortunate coincidence. You’ll rarely see a rental car escorting sunburned red Algarve tourists. Here, joyfully colored Volkswagen T1 and T2 with individual interior dominate the crushed stone roads leading to the coastline. Yet, no Holiday Inn has cemented its monument of organized mass tourism in the hot sands. YET!

Staying in Aljezur is dangerous: A place that seems so far away from all hectic rush, schedules, business meetings and liabilities may make you wonder why you ever leave again. Life could be so simple: a morning swim between the rocky stone formations in the ice-cold Atlantic, seafood dinner in one of the down-to-earth bistros, surfing the high-rise waves until your nightlife-obligations call. Isn’t it worth a try how long you can handle this? And of course, you’ll meet Steve from Sweden and Karin from Switzerland who forget to exit Aljezur some century ago and live a fancy-free, a creative and uncommitted life here. Aljezur bonded them with its oriental spell that outlived the ages since the Moors founded it back in the 10th century.

For me, Aljezur is a dream, I temporarily give myself up to. But only temporarily. When I feel caught in all that hippie-mooded laziness I climb up the little hill to the ruins of the Moorish castle. Here, you can overlook the tight gathering of the white houses of the historical village. Moreover you are able to see through a valley of shallow hills far into the country – just to remember: Aljezur is a exceptionally beautiful place but there is more Portugal to be discovered!


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