Tavira is a small town of about 26,000 along the southwestern coast of Portugal and was the first stop in the Algarve region for our travel-junky pair. There’s nothing especially zippy going on in Tavira and the that seems to suit the local residents just fine, thank you. It’s one of those places in the Iberian Peninsula that follow a similar pattern of history. The Phoenicians were here. So were the Romans. And the Moors. Then the Moors were pushed out by the Christians. We’ve seen the drill so many times.
But two things impacted the course of modern history for Tavira. First, was the great earthquake of 1755 that practically demolished the entire town. Second, was the change of migration patterns of the tuna, which had been so important to the town’s livelihood. The city was rebuilt but the tuna never returned. Fortunately for Tavira, tuna have been replace by tourists (but not that many) which keep the city alive. The food here is wonderful, the people friendly and for the traveler willing to take a little bit of time off the usual heavily touristed Algarve track, a rewarding experience.