Portugal is the Worlds 3rd Safest Country

Portugal is becoming one of the most desirable countries in which to have a vacation, safety plays an important role in most holiday makers choice of destination.

The Global Peace Index ranking at the start of autumn 2017 rates Portugal as the third safest country in the world, climbing up from it’s position of 5th in 2016. The Global Peace Index ranks 163 countries according to their domestic and international conflicts, safety and security and degree of militarisation. The most peaceful country in the world is currently Iceland followed by New Zealand and then Portugal. General crime in Portugal has dropped by 21 percent during the last 10 years while serious crimes are down 32 percent. West coast 1

Portugal has meanwhile also been rated as one of the top three expat destinations in the world when it comes to the general living experience in the country. (Yougov HSBC Expat, The News)

Come and see for yourself, you will not be disappointed the Algarve has a perfect climate and if you are looking for the perfect place to stay then look no further our own villa rental in Monchique would give you a perfect base to explore the Western Algarve.

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Where is Home?

Living in both Canada and Portugal

Our villa in Monchique is available from mid March to end of November each year during which time we live in Canada. One of the most common questions we get asked is where do we consider our “Home” to be? And, it is a difficult question to answer. When we first started commuting between Canada and Portugal I would say that our boots were still in Portugal but lately Bev would certainly sway towards Canada as we spend the largest part of the year here. For me though, having been a nomad all my life I cannot say either way, apart from a week of jet lag at either end I soon settle into whichever home as if I had never been away.Float Plane over Nanaimo

We love both countries, and count our blessings every day. The only thing the two countries have in common is that the people are friendly and they are both very safe places to live, in both, if we go out and realise we forgot to lock the front door it is not an issue. Otherwise the two countries are about as diverse as you can get, everything from culture to food.

Getting into the Mode!

When in Portugal we have to get into “Portuguese mode”, that is: language, cars with clutches, (you should see our kangaroo stops), bureaucracy, bank and post office short opening times, cheap groceries and wine, wall to wall sunshine most days, awesome restaurant food,  and Portuguese drivers! In Canada mode, burgers, pot lucks, making our own wine, cheap gas (petrol), language, yes language, Canadians speak English but so many words are different that sometimes folks don’t have a clue what we are talking about!Our resident orphaned deer

Pets

One disadvantage of living in two countries is not being able to have pets. We would love to have a dog or two but what do you do with them when you are away for so long, to board them in kennels would not be fair so we have to content ourselves with “Bambi” our resident orphaned deer, here he is waiting for an apple!

Here is a proud mother with twins born in our garden this spring.Mom with twins

Stop overs

Traveling between the two countries creates opportunities as far as flights are concerned we have discovered that going via different places each time gives us an excuse to have a short stop over. This year we had a couple of weeks exploring Yorkshire, last year Southern and Northern Ireland and next year Southern Ireland again, you just have to taste those Irish breakfasts!

In conclusion we love both places, there are so many positive things about both and what few negatives may exist from time to time are insignificant.

 

Is British Columbia more British than Britain?

I have come to the conclusion, well nearly, that there are more Brits here in British Columbia Canada than in Britain! Just outside the provincial capital, Victoria, named after Queen Victoria, is Oak Bay, yes, named after English Oaks planted there over a century ago. it’s a suburb of rather Posh houses and is often referred to as being, “Behind the Tweed Curtain”. Plus fours, tweed jackets, Range Rovers and Jaguars abound!

Jaguar 420G
Nigel and Bev with their 1967 Jaguar 420G

We even have an annual Scottish Highland Games complete with hairy knees, cabers, wee drams, kilts and Bag Pipes! It doesn’t end there either, any excuse for a Scottish marching band and they are out in force often competing for Bag Pipe honors.

Our local pub is called the Lion Rampant, a Scottish pub and they serve Haggis and Cullen Skink. Just up the road we have the Crow and Gate, a replica of the original pub called the Crow and Gate in Crowborough, East Sussex, built by a local who was homesick for his beloved pub in Blighty. Even our local Fish n’ Chip shop has a photo on the wall of the cast of Coronation Street who dined there some years back! Yes, BC folks are hooked on Corrie too!

So not to be left out of all this Brit nostalgia stuff I bought a Jaaaag. It was a wreck but after some 1000 hours of solitary confinement in the garage (for buying it), it now resembles a luxurious Jaaaag! Or Jagwaaar as the Tweedies would pronounce it. DSC_2153  It’s a 1967 420G in Old English White. It is the largest car Jaguar ever built and one of only 1125 left hand drives made and one of only 67 imported into Canada, so it is quite rare and the Brits here can’t get enough of it! We entered it in several shows and concourse type competitions and have notched up 5 first prizes. DSC_2152  DSC_2154 The boot (trunk) is enormous, apparently the infamous Kray twins had one for moving “things” around! All in all it has turned out to be a most enjoyable and worthwhile project.

All offers considered………..I have my eye on a 59 Mark V. lol.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First blog post

This is the post excerpt.

I thought it high time to start a Villa Vida Nova Blog

There are plenty of subjects to chat about and I would like to encourage readers to join in. Owning a villa rental in Portugal leaves it open to talk about everything related to the location, the people, the culture, the geography, villa and property ownership, the owners themselves, vacationers and potential property owners too. Tourism in the Algarve but farther afield in the rest of Portugal and Spain.

These are just some of the subjects that will be covered if you have any others that should be included please let me know just shoot me an email.

  • About the owners, who we are, what we do, where we live when not at the villa, what interests keep us entertained…………..
  • Exploring the Algarve, Portugal and Spain. How to do this on different budgets, off the beaten path, away from tourist hotspots……….
  • About buying property in Portugal, about renting out your property, how successful it can be, how to go about it…………
  • Tips about getting the best value vacations, car rental, flights……………………….
  • Food and wine, the best restaurants and the different regional foods………………………
  • Why Portugal, why is it one of the most sought after vacation and retirement destinations……………….