Vila Do Bispo Algarve Portugal
Portugal village day trip from Albufeira
Vila do Bispo, a small Portugal village once the 'bread basket of the Algarve', is located a few miles north of the town of Sagres, another small village, both a few hours' drive west from Albufeira on the main highway to Cape Vincente on the southwest coast.
Vila do Bispo ~ Portugal Village Main Square
Vila do Bispo, like many of Portugal's old villages, has a a central square with a church along one side.
Here, Flame trees and other blooming flowers line the perimeter.
From time to time, women clad in black from head to toe walked briskly past, bent on getting from point A to B.
And dogs! There are an alarming number of homeless dogs and cats millling about the algarve, so much so that some visiting Europeans started up an Adopt-a-Dog service.
Detail on Portuguese Church in Vila Do Bispo Village Square
The church doorway has an 'eye-window' feature overtop; and the roof is described as 'kneading trough' style.
A museum is attached to the church, though neither it nor the church were open at the time of my visit (Late January, midweek, around noon).
If there is a particular church you want to visit, see if you can find out when it's open to the public, so you don't drive miles to be disappointed.
Your hotel may have tourism brochures, so ask if you don't see any.
Like many churches in Portugal villages, the interior of this one at Vila do Bispo is adorned with the traditional blue and white tiles.
Row housing along Vila do Bispo ~ Algarve Village street
Many doorways and windows on the houses in this area are framed in bands bright colours or carved stonework.
The roads through many towns and villages are quite steep and narrow, so renting a *small* car makes it easier, especially when parallel parking.
Detail on Vila Do Bispo house : Old Portuguese Housing
This house, though in need of some maintenance, looked vacant but was occupied.
Throughout the area, there are a number of well-kept and brightly painted homes that looked recently renovated, which I would have liked to visit.
From time to time, we passed horse drawn wagons laden with goods for sale.
Someone told us these wagon nomads were Gypsies.
Older House, in ruins, in Vila Do Bispo Western Algarve
The narrow streets around the church are lined with whitewashed houses typical of many old Algarve towns.
You'll see its clones many times in the small villages along the inland roads; not as much along the coast, as that's where the development is.
As you drive around the countryside, keep an eye out for the cork oak trees, identified by their peeling bark.
You may notice cork bark in large piles, similar to haystacks, in fields.
A few blocks west of this square, down the hill, there's a town center with a few cafes and the municipal office, where you can might be able to get a menhir field map.
Portugal Water wheel near Vila do Bispo
Next to the highway that takes you from Albufeira / Faro to Vila do Bispo, we spotted this old water wheel on the north side.
Keep an eye out for it just as you getting close to Vila do Bispo.
You can see this water wheel in the farm yard.
Wildflowers in Spring : Algarve field near Vila do Bispo
Everywhere I travelled in early February, the fields were blooming with these wildflowers.
We stopped outside of the village to walk the menhir fields, and this is where I took this photo.
West of Vila do Bispo on the South West Algarve Coast
You can also take a narrow back road to the west coast cliffs, ruins and villages north of the Cape.
We found this road on one of the small maps.
Much of the Algarve coastal area is protected parklands. Road signs, once you are off the main highway, can be hard to spot. It helps to have a sharp-eyed navigator!
Atlantic Surf and Cliffs ~ Algarve Portugal Coast
A closer look at the wild surf, the sea air, all misty and fresh and full of negative ions!