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Medieval Days And Knights In Portugal
During August Bank Holiday weekend, the castle at Castro Marim on the Algarve, Portugal, returns to the medieval ages, recreating all the pomp and circumstance of that era in a spectacular four-day festival.

Although it's only 40 miles from Faro airport, Castro Marim is considered off the beaten tourist track. Overlooked by the impressive historic Castle, the town of Castro Marim was originally founded by the Romans as a seaport. However, it is now some three miles from the coast and the land in between now largely features a salt marsh nature reserve. The historic castle, where most of the festival takes place, stands above the tranquil, whitewashed town and is a memorable place to visit - either to watch the festival or as part of a longer break in Portugal.

The Feira Medieval de Castro Marim starts with a fanciful parade through the streets led by the king and queen, who are accompanied by their colourful Court consisting of noblemen, ladies, musicians, stilt-walkers, jesters and a handful of knights in shining armour. Once the noisy procession is complete the fun starts, featuring jousting tournaments and street theatre performances based loosely on the medieval ages. You have to hand it to the locals: dressing up in full armour at the height of summer takes some resilience and pluck! The show that they put on is truly memorable and they like to include visitors in the proceedings; so if you attend watch out, you may well become part of the show!

As with most of the Algarve, there are plenty of quality fish restaurants in Castro Marim and many friendly bars, making it a great place to visit if you wish to chill out. The residents are very friendly and welcoming and you will revel in their hospitality. But, if you fancy combining your festival experience with a few days lazing on the beach, you'd be better off travelling to one of the Algarve's better-known resorts, such as Albufeira or Villanova further west. You may even wish to drive farther afield and take in the historic capital of Lisbon, further up the northern coast of Portugal.

Thankfully, cheap car hire in Portugal is plentiful and easy to organise; many car rental companies will let you pick up your car at Faro airport when you arrive, from where the Algarve is your oyster. Indeed, car rental in Portugal is even more essential if you are organising your own holiday break, as you won't want to rely on public transport. It can be hit or miss on the Algarve and the freedom to travel wherever you want if very important in a country that has so much to offer.
About the Author
Author of the article is Andrew Regan. For further information check: Car Hire in Portugal.
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