Portugal. Oh Protugal… Had I known how much I’d love you I would have planned so much more time!
Spain will always have a special spot in my heart, but Portugal has an even bigger one now!
We spent 2 days in Lisbon & 2 in Algarve… Not long enough.
We heard Chiado was the place to be in Lisob. It definitely was! Great foodie scene, Michelin Star chefs, and rooftop bars like nobody’s business.
We got in mid afternoon and headed to Time Out Market. Downed goat cheese bread, octopus, pork and local wine. Yep… That happened. Happy Happy Day!
There’s a big castle on the top of a hill in the heard of Lisbon Amazing views of the city. It was about a 1.5 mile walk each way (mostly uphill!) Definitely worked off that lunch!
From the top we heard some banging music down in the city. Obviously we had to find where it was coming from!
We followed it to the center of the city. The square was filled with students dressed like Harry Potter and throwing each other into the fountain.If you saw this on snapchat it was insane!
Day two Sintra...
When it’s architect was known as “The Artist King” you know it’s going to be a good castle! Sintra is like magical fairytale village. Thirty minutes outside of Lisbon and easy to get to. You can take a train, it’s cheap, but takes an hour. Plus, you still have to figure out some way to get to the top of the mountain (it’s a hike!)
We got an uber and for about $30 got from Lisbon to the entrance of the Palace. 100% worth it!
There is so much to see! It would take you all day to see it all. With limited time in Portugal, I didn’t want to waste a minute.
We visited Palåcio De Pena, roamed the gardens a bit and headed back. Just enough time there and plenty to spend back in Lisbon.
- Time Out Market: Trendy market with pop-up restaurants. You get the best of the best restaurants in Lisbon in one spot. Super affordable, plus you can try a little of everything.
- Bistro 100 Maneiras: The service and food were exceptional exceptional. Sit upstairs by a window and let them recommend some local wines.
- Take an uber to Sintra: Belive me….after seeing what a pain it is to get to the actual palace/castles, it’s so worth spending the extra bucks to get there and save some time.
If I had to describe what I think heaven will be like…. it’s Algarve. There are really no words. Hidden gem of Portugal.
Lush greenery as far as you can see. Incredible coastlines with cliffs, caves, beaches and crystal blue water. Then vineyards, olive and carob orchards and everything else good in the world. All in one little area of Portugal.
We rented a car and drove about 3 hours to Algar de Benagil. One of several beaches you can visit to get to the caves.
You feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere until you come upon a tiny GORGEOUS beach! There’s a great restaurant that overlooks where we got our first pasta of the trip. Salmon Pesto. YUM!
We took a boat tour and saw about 10 different caves. I know there were even more than that though. Incredible.
We stayed at Vila Monte Farmhouse. There could have been no better way to end this trip. It’s a new resort built on an old farm property. There are hundreds of trees and edible plants filling every inch of the grounds.
Everything they use at their restaurants is grown on the farm with the exception of meat and dairy. Those are locally sourced too though!
We got in around 5pm after leaving the caves, freshened up and went for a sunset walk through the gardens. Champagne in hand.
Woke up for breakfast and yoga. Laid by the pool, catching up on sun and work. Did a local food and wine tasting class with the farmhouse chef (We tried sardines for the first time and we both actually liked them!). We wrapped up the day with an incredible dinner and headed back to our little cottage oasis to get some sleep before flying home.
Absolute perfection. It could have only been better with a few more days in Portugal.