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Nicest of walks you can imagine in the Algarve. That is, if you like the seafront. The first half of it starts in Cabanas and runs along the wetlands, situated between the inland and a huge, long and wide sandbank protecting the wetlands from the sea. The latter half of the walk leads back from Cacela Velha to Cabanas over the seabank. This means you will have to wade through the wetlands at low tide or wait for the tide to rise to take a watertaxi to bring you from the pier in Cacela Velha to the sandbank. Which brings me to 3 golden tips if you want to make the most of your hike. First, put on your most sturdiest shoes since you'll have to walk through mud flats and climb over rocky passages. Secondly, take a backpack with a towel, dry underpants and beach sandals if you'll want to wade through the water as described above. Best dress in shorts or in a skirt you can roll up high since the water can reach up to ones' hips at certain places (even when it's low tide). The problem is the fishermen know where you can wade through easily, but you can't see it. The beach sandals come in handy because you might hurt yourself on sharp things in the sand. And thirdly, check out the tide tables. if you start out from Cabanas 1,5 hour before it will be low tide, you will arrive in time and be able to make a tour of Cacela Velha and then wade to the sand bank at the right moment. Otherwise, you will have to wait until the boats can set out again. Once on the sandbank, you simply continue your walk to the right until you notice a place with parasols, beach chairs and a beach cafe. There you take the boardwalk that leads over the dune bank to the wetlands where a boat shuttle will bring you back to Cabanas (0,75 Euro). You never have to wait long. They watch from the other side if someone is waiting on the pier. And if you're lucky, you may find beautiful shells and corals on the beach. A few more tips: do not take pictures of the fishermen collecting clams unless you're planning on buying some. They can get pretty aggressive at times. And keep in mind that Cacela Velha consists of two parts, the first you encounter on your hike is the modern center and is also the place where you take a boat shuttle or wade through the water. The second part, a little bit further still, is the old village with the church where you will find a cobbled staircase from the beach leading up to it. Also note that if you want to visit the old place by car coming form Cabanas, it's the second sign to Cacela you need to take, not the first one. Otherwise you'ill end up in the parking lot at the boats. Have a nice hike! Ipomoea.
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