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Praia de Moledo: a beach with soul and sun at the north of Portugal

Praia de Moledo: a beach with soul and sun at the north of Portugal

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When I first heard about Moledo I just thought it would be “just another beautiful beach on the Portuguese coast”. The place is famous for windsurf and the beautiful scenery at the end of Minho River; but I guess that since I’m not a windsurfer and I don’t get tanned (I am more the vampire type), I didn’t have much reason to go.

I was so mistaken…

A short trip to Moledo beach, Caminha

If you’ve been following me lately, you already know that I’ve been visiting the north of Portugal: Braga, Caminha, Praia de Ancora, Monçao… Some of this places I already knew (they’re about an hour away – or less – from my hometown), but I’ve made some nice discoveries along the route. This is certainly one.

I must be honest, I didn’t go there on purpose. We just wanted to stop and decided to have ice-cream in a new place. Then we saw the sign to the beach, why not go?

Sun bathing Moledo beach

At first sight, Moledo is just a beach. From the Minho River estuary and Spain, on the right, to Praia de Ancora, on the left, the praia is a long beach where families and windsurfers share the space.

What we found was not a crowded beach like those of the Mediterranean; you could tell by the huts where people sit and the kids playing all around. It isn’t a calm beach either, you could tell by the few people actually swimming and the many kites up in the air.

So we decided to walk along the promenade, look for the tourist office and stop at any coffee place along the way.

Moledo town from the beach


Well… no tourist office (shame on me, couldn’t find it although I followed the signs :? ) so we couldn’t ask what was that fortified something in the middle of the estuary. Maybe some military post?

And then we found Fado

So, chatting and walking around we decided to stop at small hut (I wouldn’t call it a cafe, sitting on top of the beach and being made of wood) called Pé na Tabua. It was hot and we got thirsty, so we ordered something cold to drink.

And, suddenly, the man sitting behind me starts to tune a guitar. I was like, really? from all the quiet places where we could be sitting we had to sit at the noisy one? Was I soooooo mistaken.

These were no noisemakers, these were fadistas. An actual fado singer from Porto, who had come for the party happening at Lanhelas’ Festa da Solha, was singing next to me. Beside him, an actual fado guitar player, who had come from Caminha to visit his friend, was playing next to him. And all of a sudden we were enjoying the smallest concert in the world by the Atlantic ocean and for free.

No tips, no adverts, nobody selling CDs or handing out brochures for a show. This was improvised, anonymous and amazing. One, two, three classic fado songs (including famous A feiticeira) and they had to go.

We could have stayed there for hours listening to him. But  they left us with a smile on our faces and as we watched the sunset we knew this was like finding a golden pot at the end of the rainbow.

No, the barman didn’t know who they were, they never told us their names and the only proof I got is that picture I posted on Twitter and a recording I keep to myself. Just in case you ever find them, let me know who they are. If you feel like looking for them, this is the place:

Pe na Tabua snack bar in Moledo, where I met some fadistas singing just because

And this is the beach. Probably the reason why they were having some beers there. We waited until sunset, got back to the car and singing on our way back home.

Praia de Moledo beach North of PortugalPraia de Moledo towards Praia de Ancora

1 Comments and Questions

18 January, 2016 at 12:03 am

I have always wondered what the Northern part of the country was like. The fact that it is so much less touristy makes it such a much more authentic experience.

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