28-Aug-2004 -- The idea started two months ago after reading an article about confluence fever, and we got infected right away as there was a confluence still unvisited in our region but it lies off the Algarve coast in the Atlantic Ocean ...
First we had to buy a GPS, and then find an affordable boat to hire for the purpose. The GPS came by post in no time, but finding someone who drives you just to a point without tourist interest wasn’t so easy at all. Since we live in Aljezur (120 km away from Faro), we started to ask for boat trips in Portimão (only fishing trips or sight seeing!) and Vilamoura (way too expensive for our budget).
But we were lucky at the Marina in Faro finding just the right man, boat, price and everything to our convenience. Augusto’s boat “Espadim Branco” looked trustworthy enough to take us out to 37N - 008W, which is only a bit off the beautiful beaches on the Faro Islands.
09:00 a.m. UTC we met in the café in front of the Marina entrance. We had a quick coffee and bought a cool bottle of water to take with us. It was getting hot already…
Augusto, owner and skipper, mounted the shades for Michael, our dog Lucy and me. Sitting in the back of the boat we watched Faro getting out of sight. Passing lots of fishermen in there usual expecting position and some sun seekers on their way to empty beaches we headed west through the sand banks and out on the open sea. The wind got stronger but Augusto considered the sea calm and easy. Well, obviously, I am a little anxious when it comes to boat trips, but I felt really safe. To reach 37N - 008W took us 56 minutes for the 10,9 km, with an average speed of 11,4 km/h according to our GPS.
Also this amazing little satellite communicator indicates us 2 meters above sea level, well, that’s exactly how I felt: almost flying like one of the numerous seagulls around us. On the spot we took the pictures, leaving out the south direction with only water to be seen. Getting an all zero indication was also not possible, being on the floating boat. We decided that we got close enough and told the skipper to turn around.
Off we went, this time 20 km to the east to Cape Santa Maria on Barreta Island, the most southern point of the Portuguese mainland. Taking the passage back to Faro turning north-west at the lighthouse and driving for another 40 minutes brought us back on solid ground and completed this visit to the 37N - 008W.
We feel, we added one more piece to the Portuguese puzzle, who knows if we are going to visit the other missing links.