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Aljezur



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From Aljezur, tourists can explore the wonderful beaches of the Algarve's west coast: bathed by the Atlantic, they are often wild and deserted, in contrast to the warmer ones of the south.

The beaches of Arrifana and Monte Clérigo, sandy and surrounded by cliffs, are easily reached from the road just south of Aljezur; further north, on the border with Alentejo, the beach of Odeceixe, near the village after which it was named, is sheltered, with the river Odeceixe entering the sea, and favoured by surfers.

Aljezur is small and tranquil, being overlooked by a Moorish castle from the 10th century. It is divided into two parts and lies in a fertile valley with a patchwork of fields where various crops are cultivated.

When the Moors built the castle, various streams flowed in the area, and the one around the base of the hill was so wide that boats could sail up to Alzejur. But the waters became infested with mosquitoes that spread malaria and so the population moved away, creating another centre. So the town is divided into two parts: the Old Town and the New Church.

Of the castle, only a cistern and towers remain, while the Mother Church, rebuilt after the great earthquake of 1755, exhibits a splendid Neo-classical altarpiece.

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