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Benafim Grande

Benafim Grande in central Algarve comes under the district of Loule. Located on the EN124 road, running  from Alcoutim on the Spanish border, towards  Silves in central Algarve. Being over 200 metres above sea level set in the Serra de Caldeirao hills. Benafim enjoys coastal views from the top at the church.

The church has a small clock tower and at the rear of the church is hand painted tiles of Christ on the cross, dating from the 18th century. The whole feel of Benafim is a true encounter how the Portuguese live. From the grander merchant houses to the humble stone built houses that are just six feet wide with a small doorway and one window. Built with pride with many having large fancy chimneys which the Algarve if famous. The bigger and fancier the chimney design. Was a sign of standing and wealth?

Benafim comes under the district of Loule one of the richest parishes in the Algarve. The town’s public places have been restored whilst keeping all its charm. Many narrow cobblestone street have not changed for decades the main street is wide with benches ever fifty metres along with old style street lamps.

Towards the rear of the town, is a local tiled water font now fully restored and boasts scenes of the past with hand painted blue/white tiles. The font now updated, fitted with brass taps that replaced the stone gully that used to flow continuously with spring water. The water is suitable for drinking and used by the locals. Just a short distance away is the fully restored and working public open air Laundry housing public toilets. The main wall has artistic hand painted scene of an Arab with a young girl painted in 1996.

Across the road is a picnic area with an old water Nora. With wooden tables and benches as well as a stone built barbeque. An information stand showing areas of interest within the town, also a small museum. The area is very popular with walking groups with routes that can be seen on Google earth. It runs through Rocha da Pena, signs kindly ask you not to make too much noise due to wildlife population that breed in the nature reserve. The walk is about 3 hours depending on your pace, and covers less than 5 km. You will often see Sheppard’s as the area is known for grazing of goats and sheep. The lime soil gives growing of Almonds and Figs one of the largest for the Algarve.

Benafim Grande has all you could want if staying nearby, a large supermarket on the entrance on the EN124, with a petrol station; chemist, medical centre, sports club.

Plenty of small bars and a few Restaurants that serve traditional Portuguese dishes, as well as the dish of the day (Prata da Dia).  Benafim Grande holds an annual event normally on the 3rd of October with runs until the 5th Republic day for Portugal. Locals pull out the stoppers, with family and friends meeting at the local picnic & barbeque area.

Elaborate chimney Tiled crucifix

Restored water font

Public open air laundry

18th century church