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Thread: trip report -Portugal

  1. #1
    LindaP is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2003 Denver, Co Posts: 2,817

    trip report -Portugal

    Sept. 21, left Newark in eve, arr. Lisbon am. There were 4 women, myself, my daughter, my sister-in-law and her cousin. We got a set rate cab and were off to Cascais.
    It was normally a 30 min. trip, but 10 mins. into it, we were stuck in traffic because of an accident. Crawling along....3 hours later!!!!(and our cabbie spoke no English)....no water and tired we arrived at our Hotel Vila Gale
    Only to find out that they were overbooked, and we would have to get back into a cab for a short ride to Estoril, where they had another Hotel Villa Gale.
    Well, after getting some beers (Sagres the big name, pretty good)and water and a free lunch, we were off agin.
    We arrived at our hotel....they gave us 1st floor rooms, with balconies. Very nice, rooftop pool, and free breakfast. There is a large stone walkway along the ocean all the way to Cascais from Estoril...takes about 20mins walk. Beautiful area, and cute town....one highlite was our grilled squid, simply prepared with oil, delicious.
    We met a lot of people from England, Finland, Holland......no one believed we were American....they said no Americans ever go there!!!!! Maybe I should keep the secret.........Portugal is awesome!!!!!!
    Anyway....aftewr 2 days there it was off to Lagos, in the Algarve.We took the very comfortable, waitress service bus(16 euros) on a 3 hr. trip. We arrived at our hotel : Hotel Tivoli It was very big, our room was a walk from the lobby, past the pool. Nice room, with balcony, bright whites and blues.
    It included free(large selection) breakfast and happy hour! and a shutle bus to their beach club with a pool, beach bar and several chairs an a beautiful lg, white beach.
    We had gorgeous weather, hot and sunny the whole time. One highlight was, while on the beach on day.....we saw several fishermen, and anold woman, and young, all pulling for 2 hours, 2 ropes that contined a lg net.....we watched as they pulled in several fish....all types, sardines etc....it was awesome.
    The Algarve is beautiful...the rock formations, grottos, colors of the waters is dreamy. It makes me want to return as soon as possible. I wonder why no one goes now?
    We ended our trip(and this long report) in Lisboa ....stayed at Hotel Aviz. Beautiful place....they gave us a signature suite by mistake, so it was only 30 euros more a night, but my daughter and I had a bathrm all marble, bigger than my bedrm!!!!! It had 3 rooms, and was named because Calouste Gulbenkian had stayed there for 13 yrs.

    We had fun in Lisbon, especially one night in the Bairro Alto district, where it was like a party in the streets!!!!
    Lastly: Excellent food(the best grilled octopus ever)AND CHEAP
    Best wine, the most expensive in the grocery was 4 euros....and its ALL good, especially from the Allentajo region(just above Algarve)
    I hope you all will have a chance to explore a great country, LIndaP
    Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here we should dance !

  2. #2
    andynap is online now
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 Philadelphia Posts: 44,722

    Re: trip report -Portugal

    Nice report. I noticed you didn't rent a car. Are cabs and buses the way to go? Your report whetted my appetite and I will look into going next year. It certainly is off the radar. After going to Brazil 2x I remember the phrase; "Nao falo Portugase"- I don't speak Portugese. Used the phrase a lot.


    Andy

  3. #3
    LindaP is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2003 Denver, Co Posts: 2,817

    Re: trip report -Portugal

    Andy,
    Cabs are cheap, just have a map ready to show the driver! Buses are also cheap, and very nice inside. We actually did rent a car one day, for 70 euros, which we drove from Lagos to Sagres("the end of the world")....and that was an easy drive, good roads. I guess it depends on time and where you want to go.
    Wish I knew that phrase before!!!! Linda
    Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here we should dance !

  4. #4
    LHouchin is offline
    SBH Member Joined: May 2003 Tulsa, OK Posts: 112

    Re: trip report -Portugal

    You mentioned The Algarve. Flew into Faro in July 2005 and spent a week in the Algarve District. Spent most of our time in the San Lorenzo area, and really enjoyed everything about this area. The people were from all over Europe, very few Americans, and the Portugese people were terrific. Would love to go back.

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