• Bullfight Day in Albufeira!

    January 26, 2018
  • Another great day with 23C and of course very sunny! The weather here this time of year is fantastic. On this day we decided to take in a Bullfight at the Placa De Toiros at the Albuferia Bullring located on the Av. Dos Descobrimentos which is about a twenty minute walk from our condo at Solario De San Jose. One of the unexpected benefits of vacationing in Albufeira is that it is conducive to  lots of walking, and of course the challenge of the cursed hill up to the condo!

    Hubby with the Gold Bull outside Placa De Toiros Albuferia

    Placa De Toiros  is actually a complex of 40 apartments and an extensive shopping centre including shops, cinemas, a disco and bingo! An impressive building for sure! The Bullring itself has a capacity of 3250 spectators, arranged around a bowl where the bullfight takes place. The event which cost us 40 Euros each is a fairly expensive event which lasts about two hours. Our show started around 4:00PM. The Bullfight called Tauromaqudia in Portuguese is the art of confronting wild bulls. Not something I would normally be interested in, however, not having witnessed a Bullfight before I must admit I was intrigued to find out what all this was about as part of a culture who have been doing this for hundreds of years!

    The Bullfight Bowl & the Bull Being Challenged!

    The bowl was about one third full when the show commenced. We picked a seat with our back to the sun, and before long we were thankfully in the shade. It was really hot in there especially with the reflection from the white seating. I was amazed to see a lone couple on the other side of the bowl and they stayed there for the whole show! I would have died over there where they were! The show participants saluted them at the end of the show! The Bullfight in Portugal does not result in killing the bull. It is more of a cultural show where horsemen and Forcados, handle wild bulls while risking their own wellbeing to create art!

    The Forcados & the Triumphant Horseman!

    The horseman and horsewoman, were both are dressed in 18th century costumes and they fight the bulls on horseback! The horses are Portuguese Lisitanos that are specially trained for the Bullfights. Our horsewoman (Cavaleiras) was really good. One of the best I think from what we witnessed. Although there are many renowned Cavaleiras in Portugal. Their objective is to stab three or four Bandarilhas or small javelins in the back of the bull. This is not easy with a bull chasing you madly!

    The Matadors Battling the Bulls & The Lady Cavalieras

    Then there are the entertaining Forcados who are a group of eight men who challenge the bull without protection or weapons of defence. The front man provokes the bull into a charge to perform a Pega De Caras whereby he secures the bull’s head, and is then helped out by the rest of the Forcados to subdue the bull (most times). Hubby liked these guys the most! He thought they were very daring and interesting!! The Matadores are not important in Portuguese Bullfights since the Bull is not killed in the end! I am so grateful for this as, I did not want to see a Bull killed on my vacation! Check this place out if you visit Albufeira!  You can buy beer and wine here at the Bullfights as well as water and snacks, and of course many souvenirs to take away !It was a very interesting place!

    The Forcados, the  Matadors & the Cavaliers  

    This was our last night in Albufeira, as we were off to Lisbon the next day by train. We did an encore at Cabana Fresca. This time we caught a cab down and back to Old Town. We had enough exercise already for this day! Our experience with Cabana Fresca this night was not as nice as a few nights back! It was a very busy Friday night and we had a 30 minute wait for a table. It ws a very nice night so the wait wasn’t that unpleasant as we sat on the bench overlooking the beach and the ocean! Our table was very close to the building and the kitchen so we didn’t have the nice view while eating like we had a few nights back!

    Hubby on the Boardwalk outside Cabana Fresca Waiting for a Table!

    The food was just as good as the last time though. The level of service had dropped off a bit though. I ordered roasted duck with a sauce and it was delicious. Hubby had Leg of Lamb which was very tender and tasty in a wine based sauce. We had the Sparkling ice cream dessert again which was also great! The sides were exactly the same as our previous dinner there. We did expect something different with the alternative dinner menu choices, but it was not to be! Cabana Fresca is on the whole a wonderful restaurant. If you ever visit Albufeira, you should check this place out. Its right on the beach!!!

    Another Beautiful Ending to a Beautiful Day in Albufeira!

    On to Lisbon tomorrow!

    MK