Portugal is the westernmost country in Europe and home to 10.6 million people. Almost half of its population lives in the two cities of Lisbon and Porto. I recently flew to Portugal, where I was
Portugal is the westernmost country in Europe and home to 10.6 million people. Almost half of its population lives in the two cities of Lisbon and Porto. I recently flew to Portugal, where I was smitten by its rich history, stunning views, and innovative art.
Lisbon is best explored using the tram system. It has many hills easily reachable by elevators. To enjoy the authentic Portuguese foods, it is advisable to stay away from touristy Fado restaurants and eat in small hole-in-the-wall places.
Lisbon is artistic and architectural. Dally through the streets of the oldest neighborhoods, namely Alfam and Mouraria. You will be left dazed at the extraordinary houses with colorful tiles. Further, palaces, monasteries, churches, and an imposing fortress await you.
If you would rather spend some time on the beach, take the train from Lisbon to reach The Cascais beaches.
Your next stop is Sintra. Getting there requires you to take a train from Lisbon’s Rossio or Entrecampos stations. A trip to Sintra will transport you back in time. The historical palace: the Palácio da Pena, which dates from 1840, awaits you.
Cabo da Roca
Before setting off to the westernmost spot of the European continent, it is advisable to bring a windproof jacket. Cabo da Roca offers a jaw-dropping panorama of a rough cape, a boisterous Atlantic sea continually crashing on the rocky shores.
Coimbra, Portugal’s former capital, is famous for its baroque university library with elegantly decorated halls and ancient books.
I once thought gondolas and canals were unique to Venice in Italy until I visited the city of Aveiro. Gliding on a “moliceiro,” the traditional boat of this city, following the canals, brings you to admire the unique mosaic facades and colorful houses on the Costa Nova.
Despite being the second-most populous city in Portugal, Porto hasn’t lost its true identity. It still possesses the charm of a small city. The architect of the city dates from the 20th century and possesses ancient narrow streets, alleyways. Along with its cathedrals, historical monuments there is Port Wine. The Porto wine grapes are produced in the Alto Douro region in the north of Portugal. Unlike any other table wine, it is sweet and has this unique name as it is brewed and matured in Porto.
The sunny coasts of the Algarve make the perfect area for escapism, whether you are looking for a lively nightlife or dreaming of a peaceful and intimate stay in Sagres. Portugal’s southernmost region offers historical attractions in the former capital of Maure Silves and the fascinating Tavira, excellent golf courses, stunning beaches from Praia da Luz to Armacao de Pera, hot springs in Caldas de Monchique and kilometers of caves, cliffs and limestone bays along its wild coasts.
Portugal is the perfect holiday destination at any time of the year and ideal for those seeking history, nature, and pleasant climate.