For my subsequent journey, I’m sharing my Road Trip in Portugal: Óbidos and Aveiro.
Portugal is a rustic that I’ve talked about visiting for a long time. I have some fascinating family roots there. My Mother and Aunt visited Portugal about 20 years in the past, and did a variety of analysis on our prolonged family. That they had been encouraging me, my sister and cousins to plan a trip, and we finally did. We traveled to Portugal on the very end of March. It was a superb time of yr to do so– only a few tourists have been in a lot of the locations we visited, and the climate was good. Most of the pictures shared here have been taken by my cousin Paula, who shares her journey experiences on her Instagram account: Sweet Spot Travels.
Lisbon Portela Airport
We had about 10 days, and we needed to see as a lot of Portugal as we might. So we flew in to Lisbon, rented a automotive and traveled to every of the “red dot” cities that you simply see on the map above. I discovered the Lisbon airport to be pretty straightforward. Customs was a breeze, and I didn’t examine a bag so there was no ready for that. My cousin arrived on a Saturday morning though… and it took her two hours to get by means of customs. So perhaps weekend arrivals are usually not the perfect at the airport.
Renting a automotive at the Lisbon Portela Airport
The automotive rental state of affairs was equally pretty seamless. We selected to lease from Finances (an American company), considering that if something went improper that perhaps it might be simpler to resolve. There were four of us touring collectively, and we had fairly a bit of bags. It was the perfect worth to lease an enormous Mercedes van than it might have been to lease a smaller SUV. By “giant,” I mean that the van was a lot bigger than typical passenger vans, and it simply sat eight individuals and had loads of room in the again for luggage. It was undoubtedly onerous to maneuver though, and it was not straightforward to park.
Ideas for Travel in Portugal:
- Use Google Maps: The GPS on the van was difficult to understand, so I acted as the Navigator, and I used Google Maps on my telephone to assist us discover our method round Portugal. The roads are fairly straightforward to know when you have one individual doing the navigation who’s telling the driving force the place to go!
- Know What Sort of Fuel Your Automotive Wants: Ensure you know what sort of fuel you’ll have to put in your rental earlier than you allow the airport! Our van needed Diesel, nevertheless it took a long time to determine that out after a limited-English conversation with some individuals on the fuel station.
- Carry a (charged) Moveable Charger: An important tip is to be sure to are carrying a transportable charger. The rental automotive had a charger you can plug into to charge your dying telephone. However it was very useful having a transportable charger too when walking round towns. Google Maps eats up a LOT of your battery, and you don’t need to be left with a lifeless telephone once you’re unsure where you’re!
- Alternate strategies of transport: In the event you don’t have a rental automotive, you possibly can take the metro (instantly from the airport) into central Lisbon for 1.40 euros. Alternately, you’ll be able to take a taxi from the aiport– go to the departures space and flag down a taxi that has simply dropped somebody off, slightly than waiting to get a taxi from the queue. Uber can also be straightforward to make use of in Lisbon. Both Uber and taxi must be about 15 euro into downtown Lisbon.
My cousin Paula’s husband Jim is an avid traveler, and he helped create our itinerary for our trip to Portugal. He researched and stored several things in mind: fascinating historic websites to see, small towns that could be super cool to go to, and towns that we’d need to take a look at because we had family roots there.
My sister and I arrived in Lisbon early Sunday morning. Our two cousins have been already there, in order that they picked us up and we drove immediately to the 700-year previous medieval village of Óbidos, Portugal (an hour or so drive from Lisbon). You need a automotive to succeed in Óbidos since public transportation to this spot is sparse. This can be a photograph of the primary entrance to the town.
OUR TRAVEL GROUP! >> Pictured left to right: my cousin Kelly, me, my sister Susie and my cousin Paula
Our first mission was to find a place to have lunch. We randomly selected Ja!mon Ja!mon, and it was pretty. We feasted on cheeses, stuffed mushrooms, pork cheeks and a couple of other goods, together with a bottle of Rosé.
Something fascinating to notice about eating at eating places in Portugal:
- You’ll virtually all the time be served bread, butter and a bowl of olives as you sit down at your table. These are literally “optional” gadgets that you may be charged for (you’ll see them on the menu for a small worth). For those who don’t want these things, it’s essential tell them to take them away or you’ll be charged. We all the time opted to have them, but typically perhaps you don’t need them!
The Streets of Portugal:
That is what numerous the streets seem like in Portugal. The main roads are product of asphalt, but plenty of the streets and sidewalks you’ll be walking on are made from small (typically slippery) tiles like this. That is essential to note as a result of you have to be bringing the best footwear for walking around Portugal. Depart the high-heels and cute wedge sandals at house, and convey rubber-soled, snug footwear or sandals that don’t are typically slippery.
The Literary Man Óbidos Lodge is a well-liked spot. We tried to have lunch here, but they have been closed on the day we have been there (Sunday). That was a bummer since we heard it was a unbelievable place to eat. It’s situated proper in the middle of town.
This boutique lodge has over 45,000 books lining the partitions of the lodge. It’s a book-lovers dream!
In the cocktail lounge and restaurant, every cocktail is known as after a literary legend. Plop your self in one of the comfortable leather-based chairs, seize a ebook, order a cocktail and loosen up!
Subsequent it was time for exploring. Óbidos is filled with slender, hilly alleyways (and automobiles manage to drive up and down all of them!) It’s awfully enjoyable to look around as a result of every thing you’re taking a look at isn’t possible something you’ve seen before. There are craggly timber, branches growing on village partitions, colourful storefronts, tiled streets, plenty of small eating places and consuming establishments, a medieval fort, and views across the valley to vineyards under. It’s a village value exploring.
The Citadel in Óbidos:
One of the principal points of interest in Óbidos is the citadel. It’s one in every of Portugal’s biggest medieval castles. In 1148, Dom Afonso Henríques and his troops (legend has it they have been disguised as cherry timber) captured the fort from the Moors. The Moors have been pressured to go away, and Henríques went on to grow to be the founding father of Portugal. He was proclaimed its first king.
The citadel is a reasonably cool property to walk around. There are steep stone steps and not using a railing main up to the highest, so that you have to be careful! The views from the top of the fort are gorgeous- wanting down on the valley under.
Ginjinha (ginja) is a Portuguese liqueur that is made by infusing ginja (sour cherry) berries in alcohol and including sugar. It’s served in a shot glass with a bit of the fruit in the bottom of the cup. YES, I attempted it, in fact! I wouldn’t say that I beloved it or something, but I do take pleasure in making an attempt what’s common with the locals.
You’ll discover ceramics of ALL KINDS throughout Portugal. Please observe the cubby in the decrease left. Ha!
I really like all the colour that folks add to their houses.
The streets and steps in Óbidos are usually not really easy on your ft (you possibly can type of see that in this photograph). However walk with caution, and ensure you have on your most snug, non-slip footwear. The sights you’ll see are value it!
This can be a view from the top of the citadel (me and my journey workforce!)
Listed here are a couple of extra sights to see in Óbidos, Portugal:
- Igreja de Santa Maria: a Renaissance church with blue and white azulejos tiles lining the inside. It was closed on the time we have been visiting Óbidos. Admission is free when it’s open.
- Porta da Vila: the primary entrance to Óbidos (a much-photographed gate). Whenever you arrive in Óbidos, you’ll park in the parking tons outdoors of the village and stroll by way of the gate into town.
- Buddha’s Eden: (6 miles south of Óbidos): We didn’t see this, however it’s the most important Asian backyard in Europe– in the city of Bombarral.
The subsequent stop on our journey was in Aveiro (also called the Venice of Portugal). In the event you occur to be staying in Porto, you possibly can take a day journey to Aveiro (about 45 minutes drive from Porto). It’s a tiny city with a stunning metropolis sq., the place many festivals are held and the locals seem to collect.
Probably the most common things to do is take a ship journey on a moliceiro (a colourful flat boat). After an in a single day flight… and approaching the top of the day… we have been too drained to take the boat experience. A meals delicacy that’s native to Aveiro is Ovos Moles (pastries comprised of rice paper full of an egg yolk/sugar combination. I want I had a chance to attempt them, but we solely discovered about them after we had moved on. Subsequent time!
There are lots of tiled buildings in this city, as there are all over Portugal.
Whereas we have been visiting, there was a parade for the third Sunday of Lent. It seemed as though everyone in city was current for this celebration!
Painted wall art and graffiti is pretty widespread in alleyways all over Portugal. A few of it is pretty fascinating and lovely.
We had a really brief cease in Aveiro (perhaps 30 minutes) as we have been on our solution to Porto. There isn’t a ton of stuff to see right here, but we have been glad for the cease. Aveiro is far totally different than other cities in Portugal due to the waterfront space. And it’s all the time fun to see as many sights as potential!
My subsequent submit might be all about our subsequent stop: Porto, Portugal (with a day trip to Braga). There’s so much to share about this lovely country!