We made it to the southern coast of Portugal which is known as the Algarve region. This area is famous for its beautiful beaches and is really popular with the British. You can spot the British easily as they are the ones with the really white skin that is burnt bright pink. I think they are so starved for sunshine that they don't bother with sunscreen. There is not a lot to see here except for the natural beauty of the coastline. The cities along the coast are pretty typical resort towns with lots of condos and hotels and big sail boats in the harbors. The area reminded us of the California coast and also Greece as many buildings are painted white and trimmed in blue.
Back when the world was thought to be flat, the very most southwestern tip of the Algarve was thought to be the edge of the world. From this point many Portuguese explorers sailed out to sea to find out what was really out there. Under the command of Prince Henry the Navigator, the Portuguese explored and took control over many territories around the world. Unfortunately, they were also the first Europeans to sail to Africa and actually started the African slave market in Europe. In the town of Lagos we saw the actual building where the slave market was held. The building is now a museum but was not open due to remodeling.
Today, the "edge of the world" has a lighthouse and nautical museum, and a hot dog stand that claims to be the "last hot dog until America".
We managed to get some mountain biking in along trails on the cliffs above the beaches. While the beaches were packed with people we pretty much had the entire cliffs to ourselves.
The temperatures are really starting to get hot in Portugal so we are now driving back up north. Originally, we thought about going to southern Spain but it is over 100 degrees in most parts of southern Spain. Our plan is to head north to the Pyrenees and hopefully see some of the Tour de France bicycle race.