Côja river beach is our nearest river beach and less than a 10 min drive from our casa. It is located in Côja, Arganil on the river Alva. I love the fact that all river beaches are different. This river beach is very beautiful and I like the waterfall that separates one zone from the other and the alder trees which line the river bank and provide much needed shade. There is a great sandy area and a cafe on each side of the river. It’s also very close to the village of Côja, so you can pop and explore the delights of a little Portuguese village. The car park is small and was full when we arrived but we managed to park in the overflow car park which is a field.

The great benefit of this river beach is that it is so close to our home that we can visit after hubby finishes work which is exactly what we decided to do yesterday. It’s still really hot after 5pm so we can spend a relaxing couple of hours then head home for dinner. We briefly visited this river beach back in October 2019 when we visited Portugal on our property search. It is so much better in the summer. There are lifeguards and the cafe near the entrance/car park is open 11am-7.30pm. It is such a lovely tranquil little spot within nature. Although it was not full to capacity, for me personally it felt like there were a lot of people there. A mixture of families, couples and youths. There is a small diving board and it was fun watching people jump off. I didn’t take my bikini this time as I misjudged the weather. I knew it would be hot but I didn’t think it would be hot enough to enter the water after 5pm, I was so wrong. I had shorts on so took a little paddle with the fishes then sat on the river bank with my legs dangling in the water which was pleasantly warm. I really love the fact that the river beach water is so clear that you can see the bottom.

We had a lovely relaxing couple of hours watching and listening to the wildlife. It’s a stunning spot to unwind after a long day at work. Who am I kidding, I’m a lady of leisure now so have no job apart from official melon monitor but I’m sure hubby feels this way (ha ha). There was no picnic today as we returned home for dinner but we managed to squeeze in an ice cream! At one point an alarm was raised and I nearly pooped my shorts as it sounded like a shark alert from the Jaws movies. I forgot the river beach is situated right behind the fire station. Another forest fire which is not good. I have uploaded the alarm sound and a short video of the river beach to Casa Valhal Instagram, judge for yourself. I am not even sure we have sharks in Portugal but if we do I’m pretty sure they would be in the sea and not a river so panic over (ha ha).

Apologies for hubby’s hair. I gave him the Covid cut again! He couldn’t be bothered to go to the barbers and now he looks like he is considering enlisting in the army. I think he needs to wear a hat for 2 weeks (ha ha). I think I may have mentioned this before but after all these trips to river beaches I have come to the conclusion that ladies like to wear a bikini bottom that is not a brief or a thong but something in-between. It is always half way up their bottom but it appears to be the fashion here. I don’t need to buy one as mine has that effect every time I jump into the water as it’s 2 sizes too small!

I am already planning my next river beach trip, I think I’m addicted to river beaches (ha ha). I am really excited about the river beach set in a glacial valley. It’s going to be difficult choosing a favourite as they are all so different and have their own unique qualities. There are tons of wild lakes and lagoons, secret beaches, ancient forests and sea caves in Portugal and I quite fancy exploring these hidden gems which are off the beaten track. It’s so fantastic to eventually be able to explore these amazing places. This is exactly why we moved here to live a more peaceful life and enjoy all aspects of nature in glorious sunshine.