Portugal: an unexpected invitation to Lisbon

After exploring Spain, my initial plan was to continue my journey to Italy. But my friend Paulo invited me on my Facebook page to visit Lisbon, so I decided to have a stopover in Portugal. It was surely worth the effort! Portugal has a breath-taking landscape and some great cultural artifacts. Here are my favourite places.

Blog Holland Holiday Portugal Boca Do Inferno

Into the mouth of hell

Paulo picked me up in the early morning with his car. I’m not quite awake but Paulo says that he has to show me something really great. We drive to Cascais, a place at the west coast close to Lisbon. Paulo parked the car close to a path that led up some very high rocks “We walk from here”, he says. The hard walk  to the top of the rocks wakes me up and when we reached it I was sweating for two. But I quickly forget that when I get aware of the view. I look down the cliffy seashore to the roaring waves that crash against the rocks. Paulo tells me, that they call this place Boca do Inferno, which means ‘The Mouth of Hell’.  I’m fascinated by this place. While we continue our walk we find a beautiful cafe inside a little rocky cave. We enjoy the view from here, together with a hot cup of coffee.

Blog Holland Holiday Portugal Bairro Alto

Bairro Alto

Later this day, Paulo takes me back to Lisbon. He wants to show me Bairro Alto, the cultural and bohemian heart of the city. I quickly realize that Bairro Alto is a mecca for shopping chicks and night owls. It has numerous sleek bars, shops for all types of fashion, cosmetics, purses amd whatever a woman can buy. The facades a sprayed with a multitude of graffitis that express the different music subcultures of Lisbon. Suddenly my morning fatigue is forgotten and I only want to get into the clubs tonight.

MrHolland_Vakantie_Portugal

Wine from Porto

The next morning I leave Paulo’s house with a rest of hangover and Lisbon music in my head. But I absolutely want to see Porto before I travel further because it is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Well, and because I want to try the famous port wine. Therefore my first station are the port wine caves in Vila Nova de Gaia . During a guided tour I learn everything about port wine and the guide pours more than one generous glass. I have to get out of here! For the rest of the day I stay away from spirits and just walk through the historical city centre. The streets are a continuous up and down but it fits the old, rusty charms of the buildings. You can see that the original design of the city has been conserved very carefully.

Plan your visit to my country

Though my trip was unexpected, I had a nice time in Portugal. Now I will definitely head to Italy. Furthermore I will travel to Germany, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and the UK. Can you recommend any great places in these countries I should definitely visit? Please share your secret tip with me!

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