The world is different these days. The usually so lively Nazaré is quiet. Very quiet. Our new reality since a couple of weeks.
People are really following the rules seriously; outdoor activities limited to personal exercise or walking the dog, working from home whenever possible, schools closed, keeping social distance etc. Here, like in many countries around the world. This new way of living started for us on March 19 and the rules are now extended until April 17. So far there are no known cases of Covid-19 in Nazaré. When will we get the first?
Wherever we go there are posts on doors: “Closed due to Covid-19”. Restaurants, bars, shops, museums, churches. Hardly no people outside and very quiet. The town feels like an early Sunday morning every day, every hour.
But there are some places that are open. The food market is open as well as grocery stores and pharmacies. Our elderly neighbours have food and pharmaceuticals delivered to their doorstep. That is nice!
Restaurants are closed but there are some that offer take away and some even have home delivery. A friend of ours asked the municipality of Nazaré if they know if there are restaurants that have take-away service. Back came a full list of that – good service!
Our neighbour on the corner, Antonio, who has a car mechanic shop is working. Lucky us! We were going for the weekly food shopping but our old Sharan didn´t start – no battery. Antonio comes with his old car to start it up and brings the car to the shop to charge it. Later the same day we have a fully charged car again. Cost for that? 0 if you ask him – finally he accepted some money for the fantastic service!
The Senior university with Portuguese class is still ongoing. Our teacher Clara sends homework to us every week. Asks us how we are doing. Nice feeling.
We are used to having a lot of people visiting Nazaré all year around and now for Easter the town is usually full of people. That will not be the case this year. There will be more strict rules during Easter in Portugal. From Friday to Sunday we are not allowed to leave our town at all.
How long will the hotels and restaurants survive? We (Kari and Niklas at Portugal Agent) who are from Sweden, read about the big problems these type of businesses have in Sweden. The help from the government will not be enough – there will be bankruptcies. Maybe it is different in Portugal? There is probably a higher degree of restaurants owners who own the space and don´t have to pay rent. That will help in the short run. But for how long will they be able to keep the door closed with no revenue?
We talked to a person who works with short term rentals. He had a good outlook in Nazaré for 2020. The corona changed everything. 99% of the bookings have been cancelled. Airbnb gives a full refund to the guest – good for the guest but tough for the owners of the rentals as well as the rental service companies.
Most of the construction sites are still up and running in Nazaré – not with full capacity and with strict rules to keep distance. The different teams at a construction cannot meet. They need to have the lunch in the building where they are working, not together with the other teams. The drivers of the trucks with deliveries to the constructions are not allowed to leave the car etc.
The ones who are waiting for a new home that is under construction, should be prepared for delays. How long? We don´t know yet. As soon as we have more info we will inform our clients.
We at Portugal Agent are of course affected by the new times as well. We had a very good start of the year and we had many guests who had booked visits with us the whole spring. That has changed now. We had to close the office on March 19 and work from home instead. Almost all guests who planned to come have cancelled. As it looks now we will need to have the office closed until April 17th, maybe longer.
We are working on improving our new website, better descriptive texts on properties and updating content on different pages. We will post news that we hope could be of value for you as a visitor to our website. Do you have topics you would like us to write about? Are there things you don´t like? Please send us a mail – we like feedback!
And even though you can´t come here we can show properties and surroundings the digital way. If you are interested in a specific property we can live-stream it for you, right there at a time that we agree with you. We walk around the property with you watching. You can tell us exactly what to focus on and what to show you. Right there, right then. We will need to follow the restrictions we have of course. But construction sites and homes that are empty are not a problem.
In all of this, mother nature is exceptionally beautiful this year. Lots of sunshine, nice temperatures, colorful spring flowers, birds singing and the swallows building nests in the neighbor’s car mechanic shop. This spring in Nazaré is really nice! We are still able to leave home for personal exercise – we are so grateful for that!
The pictures below are from different exercise tours over the last week. We hope you will be able to come and experience it yourself soon!
Stay home, Stay safe. Or as we say in Portuguese: Fique em casa, fique em segurança.
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Why did we start Portugal Agent? And how did we end up with the team we have? Both the local expertise as well as the team from Sweden?Read more about our story