Silves and Cape Verde

Algarve Life - Amanda Gleaves
3 min readApr 30, 2023

What a fun packed weekend!

It all started on saturday morning at the Coronation Fair…

Muffins, tea, coffee and great food! A good time was had by all. There was a lemonade incident — but luckily it wasn’t too serious…just a little sticky.

From there I went to Silves with a friend of mine, Doug, who plays percussion in a Cape Verdean band for the vocalist Benvindo Barros. The gig, at Teatro Mascarenhas Gregório, would be starting at 9:30pm, but he had to be there at three for a pre-gig rehearsal.

The guys all set up and I had a nose around the theatre. I have never seen such a dinky theatre. I tiny gem!

I left the guys to it and set off to Silves Castle (Castelo de Silves). I have visited the castle, before many years (ago around 30) to go to the Festival de Cerveja (Beer Fest); ironically that was where I first found out I was allergic to China Berry trees!🤨.

It is also where they hold the Feira Medieval.

I visited the Café Inglês first and said ‘hi’ to this guy on my way into the Castle.

King D. Sancho I, the monarch who conquered the city of Silves from the Arabs in 1189,

The entrance fee was only 2,80€. I am amazed that they can keep these places open with those fees!

Once inside the castle you can walk all the way along the castle wall. A thick stone path lines the inside of the walls. If you have vertigo you might want to think twice as the hand rails are not in place all the way along the wall and some sections are quite high.

The large uneven rocks can be a bit dodgy too.

Passing others coming in the opposite direction was a bit challenging. Especially where there were no rails.

Walkways along the wall

The Garden within the castle wasn’t that impressive, but there were some very beautiful trees there. When I was walking along the wall I spotted a section that appeared to be closed to the public with a very nice fountain piece in it. That garden was quite impressive.

I also found the modern day king too.

After all that excitement I headed back to the theatre!

The guys had finished rehearsing, so we all went for a quick meal before the show.

The show was fantastic! There were about 100 spectators and they all enjoyed it very much. The rhythms and voices infected your very limbs and you found it hard not to move to the Cape Verdean beat!

This show was just one of many organised by the Câmara de Silves, for the month of April to celebrate 25 de Abril.

Here is Benvindo, the band and the Batuqueiras de Loulé. Oops! My friend is hidden behind Benvindo!

It finished very late and I din’t get back home until 1:30am. I was up at 7:30 and had to rehearse with My Duo (Blue Cactus) in the morning and Straw House in the afternoon.

So I am writing this blog today very late!

Thank you all for reading.

Até amanhã!

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Algarve Life - Amanda Gleaves

I have been living in the Algarve in Portugal since 1989! I have been teaching Portuguese to foreigners for nearly 20 years! https://portugueseinsixweeks.com/