Sunday, 25 June 2017
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alcoutimFor three days in March, the public will be able to cross the Guadiana River on foot from Portugal's Alcoutim to Spain's San Lúcar on the opposite bank.

The council is having the bridge installed as part of the Festival of Contraband - trafficking in the Arts of the Guadiana (Festival do Contrabando – Tráfico de Artes do Guadiana)  on March 24th to the 26th.

The bridge will have to be opened from time to time to let boats pass and the maritime authorities of both countries will be on hand to ensure everyone is safe.

The event is part of the Algarve 360 programme and aims to celebrate the area where smuggling was, some would say "still is," a way of life.

The flow of illicit goods has promoted cross border cooperation between the two countries for generations and this is the theme of the event which is being matched by the Spanish in a complimentary programme.

According to Osvaldo Gonçalves, the Alcoutim mayor, there has been intensive collaboration and he hopes the publicity on the Spanish side will attract Spaniards to cross over to Portugal to enjoy the town and the festival.

Alcoutim is spending €130,000 on the festival and the temporary bridge, "As part of our candidacy for 365 Algarve, we will have a contribution from the Region Tourist Board of around €87,000," commented Gonçalves to Sul Informação.

Comments  

0 #9 Vela 2000 2017-03-08 20:34
It's a great idea and will bring more colour and magic to an already lovely place so lets share with all. All those of you worried about the bridge or the cost just crawl back into your corners and watch other people living LIFE !
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0 #8 Margaridaana 2017-01-12 16:58
Quoting Jack Reacher:
What's wrong with the existing small boat service that nips back and forth. Has anyone done a safety assessment..incase some drunk tourist falls in and can't swim.

If some drunk tourist falls in and can't swim, then that is entirely their fault. No nanny state here!
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+3 #7 Margaridaana 2017-01-12 14:18
I would love to walk this bridge as I haven't the head for heights to risk the trip wire. A little bit of light relief is what we all need from time to time and €130.000 is really only a drop in the ocean when compared to so many other ventures. Carpe Diem!
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-6 #6 Jack Reacher 2017-01-12 13:40
What's wrong with the existing small boat service that nips back and forth. Has anyone done a safety assessment..incase some drunk tourist falls in and can't swim.
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+6 #5 Marjolein Massis 2017-01-12 01:54
What a sour comments! It is a great idea for and from the young at heart .
What is nicer then "walking over the water" towards foreign lands. Building a wall maybe??
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+6 #4 Real Noggin the Nog 2017-01-11 23:06
But this is brilliant! A bridge over the Guadiana without CARS!

And will the zip wire be operating so early in "the season' to bring us back?

Now we just need public transport to Alcoutim that's better than the existing one bus in each direction on a Monday and a Friday only from VRSA only.
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-1 #3 Nigel Anteney-Hoare 2017-01-11 22:15
Agreed! Another crackpot idea. If a private company came up with it the director would be removed.
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-3 #2 Nigel Anteney-Hoare 2017-01-11 22:13
Agreed! A crackpot harebrained idea.
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-4 #1 Peter Booker 2017-01-11 19:36
365 Algarve is a means for spending taxpayers money on crackpot ideas and on glamorous posters on major road roundabouts.

If the Tourist Board ever evaluates the expenditure, and accounts for the consequent increase in tourism, I should be pleased to see a positive. But I doubt that any evaluation will be made public, for the simple reason that much of the money is being wasted on schemes such as this one.
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