Tuesday, 30 November 2010
Monchique and Foia....04/10/2010
A mountain climbing day today...well by car! Monchique is a good place to visit if the weather is kind, today it was a sunny and slightly windy day so all should be well for views from Monchique!!!! After stopping off at the Spa 'resort' of Caldas de Monchique for a coffee it was time to head for the highest point in the Algarve, Foia! This was the first visit to Foia and on the next visit I will take my thermals...it was blowing a gale and feeling decidedly cold with the temperature being 16c compared to 24c at the start of the journey up the mountain! Nevertheless Rock Buntings were the target bird so onwards and upwards in search of them. A Wheatear was the first bird seen, also Whinchat, Goldfinch and superb views of Kestrels as they soared over the fields, it seemed strange being at almost eye level with the Kestrels! Finally a Rock Bunting.....just the one! A super little bird that could have passed for a House Sparrow at a distance. Hardy little birds nonetheless to breed at such high altitudes! I had read that they move to lower altitudes in Autumn/Winter and who can blame them, so I was pleased to have seen just this one! The ride back down the mountain was a little scary if you thought too much about it though there were several viewing points for parking up and taking in the wonderful views of part of the Algarve, even though it was little misty the views were spectacular!