Working from home, across borders and time zones, it’s not often we get to hang out in real life. But this September, we swapped shoulders-up-socialising for four days of fun in the sun as part of our Series Eight team retreat.
The location was Ericeira — a Portuguese seaside town known for its colourful tiled streets, pastel de natas, and boutique bars and restaurants. It also happens to be Europe’s Surf Mecca (which may have had something to do with Mario…)
We kicked off the first night with dinner and drinks at our aparthotel, You & The Sea, then found ourselves a beach party, right across the street. The next day, after collecting our official trip merch (shout out to Fran for the amazing hats and t-shirts!) we blew away the cobwebs with a walk around the town with a local guide. We learned about the history of the fishing village, ate award-winning pastries, and discovered how to spot a good ATM from a bad one. Back at base, there were sauna sessions, beach swims, and time in the pool. And then it was back into town for cocktails and tacos at the Mexican restaurant, Calavera.
On Friday morning, some of us took to the beach for a few hours of surfing before joining the others for yoga in the outdoor pavilion. After an hour of stretching and meditating (and even a little snoring), it was time for lunch and drinks on the balcony. And before long, we were back on the water — this time, stand-up paddle boarding up a nearby river estuary.
Our last afternoon together was spent mountain biking along the Lizandro river. The tour took us across rope bridges, along bamboo-lined trails, and convinced Nate he should (and then shouldn’t) buy a bike. After two hours of cycling in the sunshine, we reached our final destination, Manz Winery, where we sampled six locally grown wines. And thanks to a delayed transfer back to town, we also got to try the best wine in the house: a 2016 Manz Douro Reserva.
On our final night, we put our new-found wine knowledge into practice and sampled small plates at Mar Das Latas — a local bistro famed for amazing sunset views and local Portuguese seafood. We finished the night with a few drinks, and before we knew it, we were each making our way back to Lisbon to begin our journeys home.
A special mention to the trip’s photographers, Bruno, Biel and Nate. And also to our newest teamie, Ellie, who joined us only two weeks before the trip but made the 10-hour journey via Edinburgh, Dublin and Lisbon to come and see us in person.
A few more from the trip.