5 typical tourist tips

Nowadays, it’s all about experience holidays, where you integrate with the locals, build an eco-yurt together, possibly even learn a few words of the language and gain an understanding of the local culture.

Not necessarily. In the Algarve, it’s still possible to get that typical tourist feeling. (Even if you’ve been living here for a decade). But how to make absolutely sure you’ll be mistaken for a tourist if there isn’t the Leaning Tower of Pisa to push or an ‘I heart NY’ t-shirt to buy? Just follow our five tips!

Background picture by Maciej Serafinowicz

See the original article in Enjoy the Algarve – magazine August 2017


1. Speak Spanish

‘Buenos dias, una cerveza por favor.’  These six words are literally all it takes. Especially when you say them in an English/Dutch/German accent. Every Portuguese will automatically assume you’re a tourist. Either not a very clever one (FYI: they don’t speak Spanish in Portugal) or a really stupid one (FYI: Portugal isn’t the westernmost region of Spain).

If they don’t understand your Spanish-with-an-accent, speak English. If they don’t understand your English, speak louder. And be in a hurry. Always be in a hurry. The hotter it is, the more stressed you should be. 38˚C? Mega-haste!


2. Moan about being charged for olives and bread

WTF?? They put it on your table without even asking so why on earth should you pay for it??! It’s UNFAIR! Cheating ##&*^%! That’s it, you’re so going to complain on TripAdvisor.

Now before you make a fool of yourself by calling Scam City/Opgelicht in het buitenland/Achtung Abzocke/whatever the TV show for people that are being scammed on holiday is called in your home country, you might want to know that this is part of Portuguese restaurant culture. If you don’t want to pay for the entrada, as the bread, butter, sardine paste and olives are called, send them away. Nobody will be offended if you do so. They will, however, consider you less of a tourist, so make sure to do it in Spanish (see tip 1), while making a selfie with your food.

Picture below by Roberta Sorge


3. Wear swim shorts to the museum

There’s not that much of a dress code in the Algarve actually. However, the Portuguese themselves tend to wear long trousers when it’s below 25˚C. Seriously, they get their coats out when it gets colder than 20˚C. They do wear swim shorts, but mostly when they’re, uh, swimming.

So, as a typical tourist, you make sure to wear your swim shorts to the post office, the supermarket and the museum. With flip flops on your feet. No swim shorts or flip flops? White socks in sandals, a fanny-pack and a t-shirt with the Portuguese flag are also accepted as unofficial tourist uniform.

Picture below by Jakob Owens


4. ‘Save’ a not-street dog

First of all, and this goes for everyone: do save street dogs. Do give them water when they’re thirsty and feed them when they’re hungry. Do adopt them. Do take them to the vet and get them castrated. Many thanks!

However, there are many dogs in Portugal that look like scruffy street dogs (yes, that includes Gustave the ‘I-don’t-like-to-be-washed’ Dog), but that actually have a home and loving owners. Some of them are even wandering on the streets by themselves. They’re just paying their doggie friend next door a visit or fancy a change of scenery for the day. Do not ‘adopt’ these dogs. Enjoy the Algarve knows of such a ‘street dog’ that has been ‘adopted’ (yes, by tourists) and went on a little holiday to Holland before its Portuguese family managed to track him down and get him back…


5. Get a henna tattoo/ride on a banana boat

Nothing wrong with henna tattoos. Enjoy the Algarve loves henna tattoos. Also nothing wrong with riding on a banana boat. Enjoy the Algarvehasn’t done this yet, but thinks it’ll be great fun.

These two things are, however, the two most quintessential touristy things you can possibly do on holiday. Fact. Score more tourist points by taking loads of selfies during these activities. And also when you’re in the hotel pool (+1 point), the water park (+3 points) and the restaurant on the strip that offers full English breakfast (+7 points). Post all of them immediately on social media. (Click here for more pics to boast post on Instagram).

Picture below by James Douglas


See the original article in Enjoy the Algarve – magazine August 2017

Posted in 5 algarvy things.