Albergaria to Sao Joao de Madeira

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Interestingly while doing some research Madeira with a population of +- 25000 in an area of 7.94 km²,   is the smallest municipality in Portugal. In 2010, the city was distinguished in Portuguese Quality of Life studies as the “Best Municipality to Live In”.  São João da Madeira stood out also recently by introducing in 2011 the Industrial Tourism in Portugal and, in 2012, for becoming the first Portuguese municipality to offer almost integral wireless coverage on its municipal area.

We arrived fairly late in the day and I regret not making time to explore this beautiful city.  50 years, 1 day old and feeling the late night we had last night in Albergaria and it has nothing to do with age and everything to do with 14 days of back to back walking averaging 25 kilometers a day.

Todays walk was almost a continuous string of development and several very attractive towns along the way, including old Bemposta and Oliveira de Azemeis, mostly on asphalt roads, with some welcomed shady forest tracks.  The small towns and villages were a delight to walk through and offered some interesting cuppaccina stops.  It is incredible to see the amount of once grand buildings that abound here, the Portuguese were obviously once a very wealthy nation.  The homes are covered with these blue and white tiles, interesting style but not sure I am in love with the Portuguese home look.

I am definitely gaining leg strength and the walking is going a lot better.  Checked in with Sharon and Alan and their feet as well as mine are still taking a hammering.  Blisters keep blowing up (DAM)!! Koren is feeling it after one day, her second day today and it has been a long walk.  It takes a good week to 10 days to settle down on the camino.  Koren even though young and fit is battling to find her stride / pace.




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